For many people, the 1990s doesn’t seem all that long ago yet it was an entirely different era for bands. Social media was basically non-existent and the go-to advertising option for new bands was posting about gigs on telephone poles and a few select music stores around town. Technology has changed all of that, and now you need to mix modern advertising with traditional approaches. How can your band possibly stand out?
You don’t need a lot of tech savviness or a fat bank account to make it work. You might have more competition than ever and pirating has made earning a living from being a musician tougher than ever, but you’re up for the challenge. Here’s how to do it:
- Get buttoned up
Buttons remain a staple in band advertising for a reason: People love that kind of swag. It’s a natural ice breaker, way to start conversations, and it’s a cheap DIY marketing piece you can drum up yourself. Have buttons available at all your gigs and to order online at a site like Etsy.
No matter how you feel about social media, you need to be on the biggest music-centric platform of all. It’s where fans go to seek out new music, so your natural demographic is already there. Appoint just one person in the band to be the social media “voice” for all and ensure that posts happen at least three times per week. Stay on top of analytics with one of the free tools mentioned on TechRepublic’s hot list.
- Build a blog
This should only be done if someone in the group is a phenomenal writer or videographer. Like social media, you need to blog regularly and be committed to building a following (it takes time). You can get blogging tips at Moz, and don’t get frustrated if it takes months for your first comment to roll in. That’s normal.
- Seek out brick and mortar establishments
As a local band, you want to tap into the demographics that are actually out and about in music stores, instrument shops and at diners or bars that appeal to “your” crowd. These people have already proven they’re happy to get up and out of the house, which means they just might for your next gig, too. You might even be able to strike a deal with a local (non-chain) print shop for regularly printing gig posters.