Social Media and Music: Basics of Online Music Promotion part 4

by Matt @ Kurb on June 29, 2008

Alright it’s time to get on with our “getting your head around the online promotion” series.

In the first three parts we looked at the basics and getting prepared. We talked about being ready to be patient and work steadily, we talked about getting your stuff ready, and we talked about the importance of words.

Part 1 is here:

And part 2 is here

And part 3:


Today we’re really kicking this thing off.

So we’ve got all our digital cotent ready – it’s time to get to some uploadin and some profile makin’.

Now you know I ALWAYS say your website is most important but that’s going to need some proper attention in a whole other post coming up, because you must dedicate serious attention to your website as a place for doing business in the future, so you have to go about it sensibly.

But kicking off your social media promotions and building your network is easy and something you can and should get started with straight away.

Now there are many different types of social network sites so what I am identifying are all those sites where you can create an online profile for you or your music outside of your own website – on somebody else’s website.

The sites I’m talking about today – and yes I mean myspace, facebook, youtube, etc. are social sites where large numbers of people are coming everyday to interact with content and each other, so it makes sense that you should give yourself the best opportunity you can to make this new media phenomenon work for you!

In one way you can think of these websites as channels – entertainment channels that you can participate in, just like your website is your own little channel, but when I’m talking about using these sites for promotion I often suggest these sites as “doorways” which lead back to your website where you’re much better placed to create more valuable interactions based on the attention and connection you can create amongst your audience there.

So what you’re doing here by joining and participating in these social media sites is opening up these channels, opening up these doorways back to your website by giving people are little taste and then gently guiding them towards a positive outcome – at first that will just simply be listening to the song and hearing the story of the musicians behind it, but then you will advance to providing value to a point that you can get an email address or you can succeed in encouraging visitors to download a song so they are at least taking something away from the interaction they’ve had with you.

Okay so setting up your profiles should be pretty straightforward because you’ve got everything ready:

Your mp3, your jpg, your video, your bio, so y’all just go ahead and upload them!

Myspace – artist sign up in the top right corner of the music section

Facebook – register as an individual, or a persona, then create a “facebook page”.

Twitter – generating heat. Do as I say.

Now you see this is why I’m so excited about the artist community is because inside the community I can have a full and fully updated exhaustive list of all the social sites that are worth using and what to consider when doing so.

You see some sites are only worth doing – or particularly worth doing – if there’s a certain vibe on the site for the style of music you do.

But all the big main ones should be covered, and I will also have plenty resources going into what to consider at each stage of developing each profile in relation to what platform you’re using.

Here’s my latest list of all the ones you should sign up for even if its just to make sure you get dibs on your user name or personalised URL.

Video: Youtube

Social Networking: Myspace, Facebook, Bebo,

Microblogging/Micronetworking: Twitter

Social Music sites:, Reverbnation,,

Social Bookmarking: Stumbleupon

Socially organised information: Wikipedia, Squidoo

Blogs: WordPress, Blogger

So signing up for all these sites will probably take a night or two, what’s it supposed to do?

Well it’s like this. You know that you have a website or at least that you should. It will most likely take a lot of hard work to build your website up . . . let me be straight up with you – like a year or something!

So let me mention it now unless it’s not obvious – make sure your profile links back to your site!

But jumping on a social network site is you going to where there are already people hanging out cruising round looking to check something out and they’re probably not going to come across your music otherwise unless you are where they are.

But it’s just like any party, and the social web 2.0 is one big party. If you just stand there, no ones going to talk to you.

So first it’s going to help if you look the part. You did upload all that stuff didn’t you? The songs, the bio, the video, the pictures? It doesn’t matter if your profile isn’t all fancy because you’re going to look like a half ass if you don’t have everything looking like you’ve at least made an effort.

I’m going to have to keep the intricacies of profile presentation and specific techniques that we would use when working with clients on social accounts under wraps but I will stress –

This is web 2.0. And a social network is just like any party or gig, you can’t just stand there, you’ve got to get involved, you’ve got to participate alongside those that you naturally affiliate with.

Facebook is a classic example because it’s not as easy to engage as on myspace so you’re best just to jump into the groups, jump into the forums, find where your communities are gathering on these sites.

Are they gathering around the profile of a similar higher profile artist?

Get in there! But you don’t just walk up and say “I’m in a band!!! Check us out!!!”

Come on! At least try and be cool about it. You know how to be cool don’t you?

Don’t say “please check out our music.”

If you don’t know anything about profiting from interactions then you’ve got to realise that on social networks it’s not about you.

Honestly. You’ve been to the parties, you don’t want to be that guy going

“Yeah new album, new video, got a tour coming up, yeah working on (me), doing (me) it’s a really amazing time (for me, me, me)

Web 2.0 is about them. It’s about the user. Whether they want to participate in what you’ve got to offer is up to them.

And this is the whole thing, the whole chain you begin when you use social networks as a way to interact with new fans, in order to draw them in you’ve got to engage with them on their level. You’ve got to make it valuable for them – or why should they care?

A lot of bands give their music away free now, it’s a reality. Just it being free is not remarkable in itself.

But the social network is often still the beginning of the mission, to draw them in from first contact, to get them to buy in enough to want to visit the website, sign up for the email, download the free song – that is everything because that is the beginning of the relationship between an artist and a fan.

Notice how I described visiting your site as a “buy in”. That’s because in digital entertainment attention is now the new economy, the relationship is the sale.

We can talk about social networking until the cows come how and surely in the forum we will.

But next in the series is your website and building the artist-fan relationship into revenue there so lets get on to that!


Kurb is an online promotion company specializing in digital music marketing and artist management.

Follow our blog at for cutting edge web promotion as we launch – the exclusive artist community putting artists in control of their online promotion and revenue management.  

Within New Zealand we also provide low cost and hassle free CD DVD duplication and printing as well as poster design print and placement in Auckland.


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