It may sound corporate, but brand awareness and building an online presence are essential for musicians wanting to grow their audience. Learn some simple but highly effective ways you can do just that, right here!

In today’s digital age, having a strong online presence is crucial for building your audience and increasing digital music streaming royalties. If you’re unsure of how to do that, you won’t be for long.

In this blog, we will explore essential tips and strategies to help you make the most of your online platforms. From social media to streaming platforms, let’s dive in and discover how to captivate your audience and enhance your music career.

What Does It Mean to Build an Online Presence?

Before you do something, you need to understand what it is and why you would actually want to do it. So, first things first, what does it actually mean to build an online presence?

Building an online presence refers to establishing and maintaining a digital footprint that showcases your music, personality, and brand to a wide audience. It involves creating a cohesive and engaging online representation of your music career. In essence, if you’ve done this right then people will have a crystal clear idea about you when they think of you.

Here are a few key aspects:

Connecting with Your Audience

Building a strong online presence means fostering a direct line of communication with your fans. You engage in conversations, be it responding to comments on social media or acknowledging and appreciating fan support in newsletters or social media updates.

Showcasing Your Music

There’s zero point in crafting a brand and online presence as a musician if you’re not going to showcase your music. Sharing your music through streaming platforms, videos, and audio clips allows your audience to understand what you’re all about, and enjoy your creative output.

This is your opportunity to highlight your talent, creativity and unique style.

Establishing Your Brand Identity

In order to create a solidified online presence you need to think about your brand identity. Whilst you may not have gotten into music in order to also become a savvy marketer, it’s kind of par for the course.

To create a recognisable and congruous brand identity you should come up with a consistent visual style. This way, your audience will know whatever their looking at is to do with you in seconds. Branding is also hugely about storytelling. Craft an engaging and relatable story that reflects both your music and persona, allowing audiences to connect with you on a personal level.

Expanding Your Network

Building an online presence also means expanding your network. You connect with fellow musicians, industry professionals, and potential collaborators. This can be done by hopping on social media and networking platforms.

Maximising Opportunities

By having thought about your presence in the digital sphere, you maximise your opportunities as an artist. You can use your carefully crafted online visibility to secure gigs, collaborations and even licensing deals.

Additionally, you can sell your music, merch, and gig tickets much more easily. All this takes you from being a faceless musician in a hugely crowded space to a recognisable and legitimised character that people feel closer to.

How to Define Your Brand Identity

Now you understand what it means to build your online presence, let’s take a closer look at how you can do it.

A substantial aspect of this process is defining your brand identity. We understand that the word “brand” sounds very commercial. We’re not asking you to sell out. Music is a business, and treating it as such will enable more people to hear your music and enjoy your art.

You can absolutely treat your music career professionally and maintain your creative spirit and organic personality. Here are a few key pointers that go into defining your brand identity:

  • Discover your Unique Selling Point (USP): Identify what sets you apart from other musicians, emphasise your strengths, and highlight your authentic personality.
  • Develop a Visual Style: Already touched upon previously, you should develop a consistent visual style. This involves creating a logo and picking a go-to colour palette. You should also have signature fonts and graphics that can be used across websites and social channels.
  • Find your Authentic Language: Brand voice is vastly important. Figure out how you want to communicate with your audience and what feels natural to you. Are you gentle, bold, or do you swear, are you aiming at a family audience?

Mastering Social Media

If a friend tells you about an exciting new rapper, odds are on you heading straight to Instagram to check them out. That is exactly why it’s crucial for you to use the social media tools available to you in order to build an online presence.

You’ll need to do some research into your target audience. Once you’ve found out where they prefer to hang out online, set up your social media profiles there. There’s no point putting all your efforts into Facebook if your potential fans are all using Twitter.

Choose Wisely & Engage with Others

Don’t spread yourself too thin and create profiles on every social media platform. Whilst casting a wide net might seem like a smart idea, it’ll just water down your content efforts.

It’s not enough to simply sign up on social media. You need to be active. Engage with the people you follow and those who follow you. Have conversations, comment on posts, and reply to comments. Besides pleasing the various algorithms, it gets your name out there and allows people to get to know you.

Create Quality Content

You may not be a photographer or videographer, but you’re going to need to give this some thought regardless. There are loads of moments you can capture that will engage your audience and grab their attention.

You could provide glimpses into your creative process, rehearsals, or studio sessions. Equally, you could share stories and anecdotes that give fans a deeper connection to your music.

Alongside these behind-the-scenes glimpses, you could create lyric videos to share on YouTube. Get familiar with video editing and learn some techniques that will help you to express your creativity visually. Content marketing is an unavoidable aspect of being an independent artist in today’s music industry landscape. Have fun with it!

Optimise Streaming Platforms

If you’re distributing your music to digital service providers (DSPs) like Spotify or Apple Music, you will have an artist profile on each. You can contribute to your online presence by optimising these profiles to better represent you as an artist.

Firstly, you can claim your artist profiles. Doing this enables you to choose your profile picture, include a descriptive artist bio, and add social media links.

Secondly, you can create and curate playlists. Feature your own tracks alongside similar artists you admire or are inspired by. There’s real power in playlists in terms of new people stumbling across your music. Here is also a great opportunity to collaborate with other contributors in order to gain visibility.

Analyse Your Efforts

To build a brilliant online presence, it must be authentic and consistent. If you try to be someone you’re not, you’ll get fed up pretty fast. Plus, audiences can smell it a mile off.

That said, it is important to tweak and adjust things if they’re not working. For instance, if you’re struggling to gain followers on social media, check the analytics to identify the blockers. It could be that your video content is flopping, which means maybe trying a different approach. Or, it could be that you realise you’re on the wrong social media platform altogether.

Using these same analytics to identify trends and patterns will help boost your online presence too. Work out listening patterns in your audience, or see when they’re most likely to interact with content. Once you’ve figured this out, you can formulate a successful strategy for sharing music or uploading to social media.

Don’t be afraid of just asking your audience what they think. You can use polls or questionnaires, or simply invite people to comment or message you. Find out directly if they’re enjoying your output, and see if there’s anything else they’d appreciate from you.

Summing Up

Crafting a compelling online presence is an ongoing process that requires consistency and creativity. By defining your brand identity, engaging with your audience on social media, creating captivating content, optimising your streaming platforms, and collecting valuable data, you’ll be well on your way to building a dedicated fan base.

Remember, authenticity and passion are the driving forces behind a successful online presence.

Hopefully, this guide has given you some helpful ideas on how to boost your online presence and further your career as an independent musician. If increasing your monthly music streams is a key objective for you, check out how Fractis will definitely be of interest to you!