In this weeks article we’ll be going over sharing your music on Instagram.
Instagram is a refreshing twist to producers who don’t understand the marketing side to their music because it’s image and video based. Sharing your music on Instagram is more about establishing a cohesive brand for yourself. So how can you get your music noticed? Link everything you have as much as you can. You want people to be able to delve into your journey at the click of a mouse, or tap of a finger. The age of research is upon us. People can Google you, search for you, as well as listen to you at work during a break. Give yourself every chance to be seen that you can. With that said…
1. Have a plan
- Know the audience you are attracting
The follower and subscriber is what will drive your art and business forward. Practical and realistic thinking is needed for this next step though. Understand your audience, know your target demographic, embed yourself in the community that you want to reach.
- Research other producers posts doing what you are trying to do.
Instagram is a fickle beast, in order to play in the jungle you’ll want to make sure that you do all the research possible. Check out big name artists in your field that you’re fond of. What hashtags are they using? Why are they using them? What are they doing that you like? The paramount question that you should be asking though, is what are they doing that attracted you to them? It’s time to bring these concepts to your brand and delve into the answers.
- Plan out your posts for a week or month
Pick a theme for the week or month (Example: This month is about perseverance, next month is about following passions, etc)
If you’re smart you’ll plan posts ahead of time, work with trending topics, and leave a paper trail that people are keen to pursue. Consistently push smart hashtags. Minimal likes will eventually turn into the double digits and maybe even triple digits.
- Connect it all
Have a plan for what you want users to do with you, setup your bio with a link to your website if you want them to download your album, send them to your soundcloud to listen to the rest of the beat you just posted on Instagram.
Shlohmo makes good here. He is driving people to visit his site (which he also links to in his bio). It is very clear what he is doing and he even built anticipation with his fans with a few cryptic posts about his new release.
2. Use Hashtags Properly
- Research the hashtags you want by the follower you want to attract.
Example: #Chillwave would be a good hashtag for relaxed musical compositions. Research other artist brands to see their marketing tactics and branding to see how you can apply it to sharing your music on Instagram. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and it will eventually give you the chance to carve your personal brand identity.
- Try and use targeted hashtags of 10 to 15 types.
There are atypical tags to investigate like #music, #musicproducer #insabeats but find different ones to dominate, There’s tons of interaction I’ve had with abstract additions to my hashtags. Music is a fluid ever changing sea, you’ll have to invest in the ebb and tides of the industry.
- Dominate niche tags as well as cliche tags.
Sure #producerlife is important when posting funny things but try and find 5 unique hashtags other producers aren’t using that could also attract an audience you are trying to reach (#moodymusic #bigbass both aren’t anything genre or producer related but paint a nice picture when you read them).
- Research Tags
Research is a part of the game nowadays. There’s such thing as an over abundance of hashtags. Dominate a particular set of 5 to 10 than just spamming 30 hashtags. You look thirsty, your brand should never reek of desperation. Let your work bring them to the well of success.
Top-Hashtags.com gave me some great ideas for tags involving beats. They also work for Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr.
A great way to research is to search the Tag section before you post. Look for a tag group that is active (getting a couple thousands of posts) but isn’t over dominated (#music probably has hundreds of thousands of uses in posts a day).
A quick search I ran on a few phrases involving a certain style of music. Chill definitely had a bigger group to work with, darkbeat fell in the middle with no as much activity and ambientbeats had almost nothing.
3. Planned Out Posts
- Post your Music Clips
As an artist you’ll want to post clips of your music to the world, and a small Instagram clip is the perfect way to give the people an appetizer portion of your art. Plan a clip that is embraces their auditory and visual senses. Don’t just post a clip of your music with your cellphone, considering investing in a video editing program such as Sony Vegas Pro to add a video element besides your speakers. Remember our 2nd Tip, Research Hashtags? Make sure that you match your tags, art, and music to your target audience. As an artist you’ll need to know your audience, it’s not as simple as doing it for love of the music anymore. Research other producers who have attained success, there’s nothing wrong with emulating success. Roles were reversed at a point in time. It wasn’t long ago when you were browsing Instagram, Soundcloud, or Youtube looking for the next big thing.
- Post your Lifestyle
The content that you post is obviously key to your social media success. You want to build a digital footprint of your journey and work. What screams your brand? Inspirational quotes? Clips of you at work? What about posting artwork and photography that captures the eyes of your audience? Make your instagram page the go-to place for your fans as well as your future followers to find out about your art and what inspires you. Correlate your posts with logical hashtags, don’t be obscure, be direct and to the point with your following.
- Post things that attract the follower you are trying to gain
There is more to just sharing your music on instagram. Your page should have a bigger balance on content based towards your audience than actual music clips. You will gain more attraction posting about already established people, items and past times in your field than your own unknown music.
- Picture Reposts
Repost pictures of people or things that inspire you & your audience. Pictures of a famous Sax musician with proper hashtags, will attract that listener or person. Bonus if he or she is an influence in your work. Guess what, that established figure is inspiration to others as well.
You need to post content which will make that particular audiences turn their head or at least capture their attention. Looking to make relaxed beats that are ideal to study or work to? Make sure that you’re advertising to the right people. Don’t expect someone who loves Gangsta Hip-Hop to be even remotely interested in your music or invest time in your brand if you’re making Katy Perry pop beats. Be conscious, attract the audience that you want, and craft art for the people who will actually listen.
4. Use Good Imagery
- Learn how to edit a video for Instagram
Chances are if you learned how to make music on your DAW, learning how to edit a video is in reach. Sony Vegas was quick and easy for me to grasp. This will look better than a cellphone on your speaker inside your bedroom (even though that is raw AF) and sound better for audio. You can place effects, edit the video imagery and create a more profound effect on your followers with quality posts.
Recommended Free Video Editing Software
- No Crop Video Editor for Android adds some flare to your videos
- I’ve heard wonderful things about Lightworks – Free download
Recommended Paid Video Editing Software
- I vouch for Sony Vegas as my top choice since I do a lot of videos
- Movie Studio 13 – Sony
- 11 Best Video Editing Software from Mashable.com
- Replay – Video Editor App for iPhones =X
Even just an image combined with sound can create a profound effect. I want you to take 2 seconds and visit Calm.com. The combination of their images and use of sound effect, ambiance, and music create a different world. Can you accomplish something like this this with your Instagram page?
- Plan your imagery
Whenever I browse a vinyl record shop I find myself drawn to the music with the most interesting covers. Instagram provides an effect like this if you can choose the right images for your monthly posts. Think of your non-music posts as an opportunity to connect with someone who would be interested in listening to your music. Take some time and gather images, quotes, and people/things that are lined up with the music you make.
Tycho’s Instagram displays one of the better instances of this. Notice the color choices, filters, and style of imagery associated.
- Use the same hashtags
Just because you aren’t posting music doesn’t mean to stop using hashtags. The point is to post this imagery in concert with your music dawning hashtags that match the content and help people who would be interested in your art find you. It all works hand in hand, a follower may just like you for your image and quote posts but be pleasantly surprised to stumble across your music that matches the message you put out.
5. Don’t Stop and Plug in IG on other networks
- Connect your social media together
It’s of vital significance to your success that you leave a noteworthy paper-trail. With Instagram you’re able to link up your Facebook and your Twitter. Your every move can posted to multiple social networks at once which is fantastic for letting your fans know what you’re sharing as soon as its ready.
- Don’t ever be discouraged
It will be slow to start but keep true to your message, images and music. Use hashtags over and over and don’t stop posting. Soon 3 or 4 likes and a follow here or there will turn into more. I’ve seen the worst IG images, beats, words and pictures attain success in following simply by barraging their IG even with horrible content. Imagine good, planned content aimed and targeted at the people you want to follow and listen to you.
- Stick to the plan
Having a plan to post for a week or month will be better so you don’t have to keep coming up with something new everyday. You already will have planned out the week or month with 3 to 4 posts a day.
Success will most likely be slow, but don’t fret. The tortoise and hare is an apt comparison that you should consider in your journey. When you post your work up for the musical community to critique, you want to make sure that you’re giving it your best swing. Don’t think that home runs are necessary all at once. Singles and doubles will eventually lead to a thunderous home run that will rack in the viewers and subscribers. Remember that slow and steady wins the race of success.
Starting your brand from the bottom is a strife, but one like or follow will slowly generate future recognition if you’re promoting your work to the target demographic properly.
Have Any Tips for Sharing Your Music on Instagram?
Other music producers need your help too! Comment below and share your experience.
Look forward to our next article in the coming week! Share your stories, successes, failures, questions, or your general knowledge with us if you’d like.