"There are many facets of a successful music publicity campaign, but among the most common questions I hear from newer artists are about how they canpromote their music independently and get it covered on music blogs."
Guest Post by Nicholas David, Founder of Sunshine Promotion
Since many new artists often don’t have the money to embark on national tours, advertise on major music outlets, or sometimes even print physical copies of their own album, getting coverage on music blogs (both local and national) is the best way for them to spread the word about the music they’re creating.
This post was difficult to organize because of how many different ways there are to approach promoting music. I’ve done my best to explain the psychology of why music blogs write about the music they do, how to prepare your own music for publicity efforts, where to find music blogs to email, and what your emails should look like for best results.
Before we can talk about how to achieve successful music blog placements for your music, we first have to have a quick conversation about the type of content that blogs like to cover.
Media is driven by advertising revenues – plain and simple. Blogs make their money and keep writers employed by generating advertisement impressions from visitors. The more visitors a blog can get, the more money they can make from advertisements. Understanding this business model will help you make better pitches when trying to get press coverage.
With advertisement-driven blog content in mind, next it’s important to know how blogs and news outlets generate more pageviews – exclusive content.
It’s only “news” once. The first blog to debut a song is most likely going to be the one that generates the most traffic for that story until the rest of the blog community catches up. Giving a new piece of content (new single, new music video, tour announcement, etc.) to one blog to debut exclusively is the best way to get coverage.
Remember, the media wants to know what you can do for THEM, not what they can do for you. Debuting a single from an artist means that that artist’s fan base is going to come to that particular blog to listen to the new song or read the new interview, not a competitor’s blog.
Exclusive content leads to more pageviews and more pageviews means more money. Simple.
As part of a national digital publicity campaign, tastemaker blogs are often the foundation a publicist will use to build the rest of their promotional efforts on.
Tastemaker blogs are characterized by their high-readership and the frequency with which they debut new content from (typically) major-label artists.
Tastemaker blogs influence the entire music-blog community when they write about new bands. Because of their professionalism and industry experience, tastemaking blogs are usually able to predict the successful growth of a band and subsequently, are able to influence the conversation across multiple blogs.. A high-profile placement on a tastemaker blog has much more influence than multiple mentions from smaller, local music blogs.
As a new band, you’re probably not going to get on Pitchfork. Criticisms of Pitchfork’s music tastes aside, Pitchfork generates traffic by covering content they know will bring pageviews both in the short term, and more importantly, the long term.