Linking Out From Your Artist Blog – Showing Love in Music Blogging

by Matt @ Kurb on December 11, 2008

Alright we all should know how important getting links is. Links help tell Google that you matter and need to come up in search results. especially high quality links.

Now I’m going to use examples today of how you should be structuring your links.

This may sound like details but it’s actually the building block foundations of online marketing.

If I’m linking out to a band called Fear Zero I don’t do what I just did. If I really wanted to help them I’d link out to Free Modern Pop Rock Mp3 because this is a term they’re trying to rank for.

What are you trying to rank for? I’m not trying to rank for “kurb”, what the hell is a kurb anyway?

I’m trying to rank for “music marketing” and “music management” and “marketing management“.

But obviously you and your fans don’t want your blog to be filled with SEO stodge because you’re an enigmatic rock star, not some geek, and so you’re probably likely to describe them as . . . “pop rock band Fear Zero . . . ”

That way, readers know it’s the link, and it doesn’t seem too cheesy. But you get your keywords in there. Nobody is going to be searching for Fear Zero or the name of your band. What they’re searching for is what they already know they want.

A free modern pop rock mp3.

So when you’re a blogging artist, you might think it’s easy to run out of things to talk about. Possibly, but you’ve got to play the social media web 2.0 game.

Eric over at Evolvor.com – which is a Music Marketing blog and also provides online music services – asked me to shout out on his new artist project, and given that he’s accepted many links back to my site when I’ve commented on his blogs and that’s brought me visitors and subscribers, I felt it was the right thing to do.

Check out Evolvor.com because they do a lot more news than I do . . . do I even do news? And I know Eric over there is solid on his SEO, Social Media and ad supported models. I particularly urge you to go over there if you’re a musician who is heavily influenced by um how would I say . . . Grunge? Modern Rock?

I have love for all forms of music. I do. But let me tell you quietly that if you’re in a grunge band you’re probably better off going to see Eric. I have absolutely nothing against Grunge musicians, well not much. But over at Evolvor, this is their speciality. They know that tribe, because they’re immersed in the music.

I don’t even listen to music because it distracts me from thinking of ways to make money from music. Having to sleep is a real irritation also.

Another blogger you might get into is Greg Rollett who I found through Eric. He’s a passionate entrepreneur and also a social entrepreneur, that is he’s trying to actually mobilize support for social causes, that is – gasp – help people in need. He’s bridging his knowledge of internet marketing and music under a gen-y marketing focused brand. You see how he’s identifying a niche and locking onto it.

When you bring someone onboard for music marketing service, you better make sure they have solid internet marketing skills, not just read a lot of stupid social media blogs.

But the point I was making is that you can talk about other people on your blog, and you should. It’s called “Blog Karma” and I know it works because all the most powerful bloggers are adept at networking and have the nice guy thing nailed.

Outbound links to authoritative sites also improve the authority of your site, and when I’m talking about quality links, keyword rich, one way links from an authoritative blog – that is one with original content like this one, not the 40 other splogs I keep ahem – those are the very best links.

So I’m talking about Fear Zero and what I think of their site. See you don’t have to do all that explaining just to say, here’s a band, here’s their music, here’s what I like about them, and here’s what I think.

It’s not that hard.

With Fear Zero you really see wordpress being knocked up a notch for a more professional look, but what’s important is that it’s customized, the design is unique to the band and I can pick up that this is obviously some kind of rock band’s website.

WordPress gives you lots of options and it’s not too much of a headache to add lots of widgets and plug ins that give you a lot of options, and Fear Zero look like they’re fully utilized. Photos, Videos and buttons to connect you through to the big music and big social sites are all accounted to and accessible right there.

So if I’m a myspace or facebook person, or a twitter person, or a youtube type personit’s going to be easy to get that connection where I’m active. If I’m a music consumer, there’s links there to all the big sites where I make my music purchases. Not ALL of the social and music sites. Just all the ones that matter.

Also the video is right there above the fold. For those attention deficit riddled kids out there, we need to get video and music content into them immediately! if you don’t have a big play button somewhere so something can start playing right there where the visitors are landing then you’re going to have a really hard time getting them hooked. Also, in that first blurb they’re dropping names like AC/DC, Metallica, Hinder, Third Eye Blind so you know it’s a rock band you’re dealing with.

Now the free download and reverbnation email list are in full swing, but this is where I would make the point of saying that artists need to go even further.

This is a great site and it’s an awesome music site. But when I think about internet marketing, sure, you don’t want to turn people off, but you’ve got to really frame the proposition, and ramp it up!

That’s how I do business!

Email me now get a crazy deal on online marketing – I’m in NZ it’ll cost you peanuts! kurbpromo@gmail.com

You want new visitors to leave the site with  your music and you want to get their email. Those are your two main goals. If I was working on this site I would say awesome, great, things are running, how are we going to optimize conversions to email sign ups and free downloads?

I think those two propositions need to be tweaked, so they’re really engaging the visitor to get those songs and download the free tune.

Framing is my new favourite word. I’m still going to say “leveraging” a lot though. Framing is all about how you approach the mindset of the visitor.

Downloading the song and signing up for email isn’t an option here. You’d be crazy not to. That’s the frame you’re creating. It’s not used car salesman stuff; it’s approaching the outcome as the focus.

The download album panel is sitting there above the video, and the email sign up is below it, but I think these two items, as essential outcomes, need to be given more “shelf space”, and maybe need a little more hustle.

Now I was going to at this point start talking about my OWN clients but decided that this post is long enough, so we’re going to be doing some more linking out another time.

As I say, linking out and talking about other people is the right way to blog. What you’re doing is providing value to your readers by putting them onto valuable sources, and those sources are going to recognise the value you provide them when you send juicy links, and this always works when those bloggers check their stats and see visits coming through from your sites.

Also if you’re a kiwi check out another local blogger Chris Yong blogging in Music websites and marketing.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Greg Rollett 12.11.08 at 4:47 pm

Hey Matt thanks for the mention! Another thing to mention when linking out is that most people Listen! I know when someone says my name, my clients’ names or bands that I work with, etc. So its a great chance to get someone’s attention.

Great work as usual!

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