How To Grow On Digital Platforms | For Music Artists
Now as of July 2020, we all are aware about the boom of digital platforms and the future opportunities this transformation will be providing for us. So as an artist, everyone of us (especially in India) need to educate ourselves about all this and make optimum use in the sense of monetary gains and self-branding.
Let's have a look on some baby steps towards growing digitally.
1. Don't Wait Too Much For Perfection
The first and the most important step is to start. People take too much time to initiate only. It was pretty much easier to create your own audience on digital platforms some years ago, but now there is a huge competition out there and it has got very difficult to create your own audience and the digital space for yourself. Today you need to take a lot of efforts for the same. Don't let your important years and time to go in the process of being perfect. Once you acquire a decent quality in your work just start putting it in the front of public. Don't be afraid of criticism and different opinions. Even every successful and star artist has to face criticism at some point or the other.
2. Make A Goal For Yourself
Whenever we start from home, we have a certain destination in our mind. We never roam with random aimlessness. Even if it is about buying just some milk from a nearby shop, we decide where to go, how to go, how much to buy, we carry the money accordingly. And in the case of stepping on to Digital Platforms, it is much more serious than buying the milk!
You need to create a brand of yourself or your venture/company/business, in order to make a space on the web. Create a certain goal and divide it into short term small goals. So your big dream will be divided and simplified with small doable steps. This will help you see a pathway towards your dream goal!
Just to give an example, if you are aiming at gaining 10,000 YouTube subscribers in one year, you need to divide them in monthly subscriptions. This will make it clear how to work for completing your monthly goal. Achieving each month's goal will ultimately complete your yearly goal, with a proper strategy. Every social platform has its own set of steps to be followed. Do study and plan different strategy for each platform.
3. Key-points For Selecting The Platforms
Free & Direct Access For Artists & Listeners - A very important factor to think about. An artist should have an easy access and direct access to the platform and should not be needing any subscription or membership of a third party. Also, uploading content on the platform should be easy like we do it on email. Just an account creation on the platform should make an artist enable of making a profile on the same, and upload the content and edit whenever need arises. Similarly for listeners, they should be able to listen/watch the work simply by clicking on a URL/link, without login in to anything.
Simple Interface - It should be very simple and easy to navigate on the digital platform, both for artists and listeners. If one has to search for things just to listen to the song or watch video, eventually he/she starts loosing the interest. Same goes for artists. They put in a lot of efforts to create the content. So putting it in front of the public should be very easy with a simple interface.
Shareable & Searchable - To build an audience, it is necessary that the content gets shared in various groups, circles, with thousands of people, ultimately on social media.. And to share the same, link sharing should be easy and clear. It should be as easy as we share the messages on WhatsApp. Same with the searchability. One should be able to search for the content simply on Google. Obviously that is a little technical part of SEO (Search Engine Optimization), but in today's digital era, one should be sound with all this stuff, at least in basics. And the digital platform which we are selecting, should facilitate us with all the basic support for optimising the content.
4. Digital Platforms For Beginners As Well As Pros
(We are going to read about the free and easily accessible platforms only right now. There are many more than these out there)
YouTube - It is the most popular search engine after Google. People actually come to search things on YouTube. Millions of people visit there daily. One should never miss such an opportunity to publish own content on this free platform which has the potential to bring huge audience for us. Just we need to learn the basic techniques of optimizing our YouTube channel and our videos. And once you get settled on YouTube, it is one of the best happenings to your digital presence! You need your music ready before you think of YouTube. Because from there it is a video oriented process. You need to club your music with visuals for uploading it to YouTube. Even an image is okay, but something has to be there in the video format. And only uploading a video is nor enough. You have to fulfill all the technical requirements for your video to be friends with Google's search algorithm.
You can find out more about YouTube in the below links -
How To Create And Upload Your Own Song On YouTube -
YouTube Tips For Beginners -
SoundCloud - An effective medium. Profile can be created easily here as well. Tracks can be uploaded. A specialty of Soundcloud is, you don't have any MB limit for uploading the track. Also you can attach a nice image with the track connecting its musical feel. Soundcloud tracks also can be shared everywhere. And Soundcloud mobile application is available easily.
ReverbNation - A web portal hosting the profiles of millions of musicians, song-writers, composers, production houses, record labels, etc. You can create your page by signing up here. A full packaged profile can be created by adding own music tracks, concerts info, press coverage, photos, lyrics, etc. Its Facebook integration app, mobile app help us grow our reach on social sites. Also the profile page can be shared by copying URL. Songs can be kept only for streaming, for free downloading or for sale.
Facebook - A super popular social networking site. Having the potential to make a post viral in a very short span of time. Almost everyone has a Facebook profile. But it is recommended for artists that they should create a fan page for their own or for their company/production house/venture. Because the posts shared by pages are made more viral by Facebook algorithms. Also pages do not have members limit. The page should be recommended to friends and family. Once they like and share it, a basic fan base would be created. Then one can post the links towards own musical work through page. Also share others' links. Keep it in mind that Facebook works on give and take formula! So if how you connect with others matters a lot. Keep posting, sharing regularly. Gradually fan base grows. Also it is very important to reply, converse personally with your fans those are engaged with your content in any way.
Instagram - It's basically a website for photo and video sharing. But musicians can use it for posting their photos/videos while working, rehearsals, jamming sessions etc. Videos uploaded on IGTV here have a solid potential (at times more than YouTube) and can make you reach millions.
For YouTube, Facebook and Instagram need videos, but now technology is such easy that we can create basic content on our mobiles also, to start with. Once we get to use with these platforms, we can move ahead to a higher and professional quality content.
To conclude with, we strongly recommend making use of the digital platforms and the technology that we have right at our fingertips, we should start building an audience and a brand of our own. In the long run this is going help a lot to music artists.
- Team ShubhaSurPedia