Why Musicians Need To Focus More Attention On Advertising
Let's face it, blogs aren't boosting your numbers like they use to.
You're getting placements on websites like The FADER, Billboard, etc. but the numbers aren't really trickling in. You might see a couple hundred new plays, maybe a handful of new fans, but does that equate to the money you spent on your PR campaign? Where is your ROI?
For example, as a musician, you can expect to pay $1,500-$3,000 a month for PR. This money goes directly into securing premieres, sending email blasts, locking down interviews, press runs, etc. The only catch is, nothing is guaranteed. Most of the time the PR person can lock you in for a few interviews and premieres, but there is no guarantee on how many new fans you'll acquire, what outlets will cover you, and so on.
Facebook and Instagram ads are one of the most under-utilized avenues when it comes to the music promotion budget. Artists and labels want to focus the majority of the budget on PR and premieres, but don't focus enough of it for ads. While PR is certainly important to focus on during the release, in my opinion, advertising also needs to be heavily prioritized.
The Benefits Of Advertising
I deal with a lot of artists who aren't funded by labels and don't have the $1,500-$3,000 a month to pay for PR, but they still want a ton of streams and downloads of their song, so how do they do that?
This is where Facebook/Instagram/Google advertising comes into play. Facebook/Instagram advertising is one of the cheapest ways to advertise your music when done the correct way. For example, I am working with this singer out of LA and we ran a campaign for her latest single directing traffic to her Spotify page. We had a very limited budget but were still able to drive over 5,000 clicks to her Spotify page with over 100,000 impressions for $100. I will say in advertising, the bigger budget you have, the more traffic you will see, but even with a small budget, you can still see great results.
The problem with blogs posts is that as an artist it is sometimes hard to quantify the ROI. Even if you get posted on a major blog, it is hard to determine where your new plays/fans came from, and how many of them came from the money spent on the PR campaign. However, with advertising, it is a lot easier to see your ROI and track exactly where your traffic came from.
Facebook makes it easier to "do it yourself" when it comes to advertising but to really understand the nitty gritty of it all, definitely hire someone to help run your campaigns. The more detailed you get in your campaign when it comes to targeting and placements, the better. In order to run a very successful campaign, it is important to do your research on your fanbase first. Find out the age range of your fans, similar artists that your fans also listen to, and the key cities in which you already have a solid fanbase or are looking to grow one. It's also important to have the right imagery and copy for the advertisement. If you're going with album artwork you want it to appeal to your audience and with the copy, you don't want it to come off as too salesy, don't lose your true voice.
Weigh Your Options
I'm not saying to completely quit PR because, in fact, it does help. When fans search your name and it pops up on the most recent search from prominent blogs, that does mean something. However, I am reminding you that there are more non-traditional ways to go about spending your money to grow your audience that sometimes is overlooked.
If you are interested in running your next release through advertising, please get in touch.