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How to run a music campaign as an independent artist?

How to run a music campaign as an independent artist?
As an artist, you can’t simply release your product and wait for it to blow up. You need to prepare a music campaign weeks before the release date to ensure that your music gets heard. With running a music campaign, there’s no exact formula for success as every campaign can be different based on your target audience and your goal. However, there are some questions to ask yourself before launching your music marketing campaign. 

Who is your target audience?

Nothing is more important than targeting the right audience when it comes to implementing a music campaign. Before you do anything for your campaign, you need to brainstorm what kinds of the audience would listen to your tracks. From their age to the habit, the more details the better as this would help you to envision what kinds of platforms or ads would maximize your audience’s engagement. Targeting the right audience would set a solid foundation for your campaign.

What is your goal?

After pinpointing your target audience, the next step is to determine what is your goal for this music campaign. Without a goal, your music campaign lacks direction and a unit of measurement to evaluate whether your campaign is effective or not. A great start is to set a SMART goal for your campaign. 

A SMART goal is an acronym for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based. A quick example of a SMART goal can be you want to gain 2,000 listeners on Spotify after a month your campaign gets launched. With a specific goal in mind, you can direct your music campaign in the most effective way possible. 

What materials to prepare for a media outreach? 

With every campaign, media exposure plays a key part in the campaign’s success rate. According to Daniel Ek, Spotify’s founder, there are roughly 40,000 tracks uploaded every day on Spotify. Thus, without media exposure, your release can’t break through the loud noise of the music industry

To gain media exposure, you have to buckle up and be ready to do a lot of networking and media outreach. For an extensive guide on networking, you can learn more through our article on how to network in the music industry. However, for this article, here are the main three materials that you prepare for a media outreach.

     1. Potential press contacts 

As straightforward as it sounds, you need contact information to reach out and ask for media exposure. However, not everyone is willing to give you media exposure and not everyone is the right match for your media exposure. This is where your target audience and goal come in handy. With these two values in mind, you can narrow down your potential press contacts. 

For instance, if you’re an R&B artist and your target audience enjoys reading articles on this particular music blog on R8B, that blog can be your potential press contact. Moreover, you need to keep in mind that press contacts don’t necessarily need to come from established publications. If your audience is mainly college students, you can also reach out to the college's radio station. The key to success in collecting press contacts is you need to make a relevant and attainable list of press contacts. 

     2. Electronic Press Kit (EPK)

After you shortlist your press contacts, it is time to send them your electronic press kit. An EPK is a pitch about yourself but in the form of a PDF file. In an EPK, you typically include your biography, photos, recent releases, past shows, and contact information. Don’t worries if you don’t have an EPK yet, you can learn more through our guide on how to make an EPK.

By reading your EPK, the contacts can decide whether you’re the right match for their platform. Hence, it is vital for you to clearly express your brand identity and music artist so that the contacts can have the best understanding of who you are.

     3. Track/album’s pitch

After you finish introducing yourself, you will need to introduce your release. A track/album’s pitch works in a similar way to an electronic press kit. The main goal here is to generate interest in your music release. Thus, in a track/album’s pitch, you would include a demo and the message behind it. 

The key here is to make it professional and short. You don’t want to bore people by dragging the pitch longer than needed. The more concise your pitch is, the better impression it will have toward your contact. 

What marketing channels will you use to reach your target audience?

Following with the potential press contacts, you have come to the main part of the show - marketing channels. The only way you can amplify your reach toward new audiences is by using effective marketing strategies and channels that are relevant to your music campaign. It is easier to say than do since there are numerous marketing channels for you to choose from.

However, we’ve shortlisted the three main ones that are relevant to musicians. For a completed guide on choosing your channels, you can read our article on music promotion and music marketing channels.


     1. Press coverage 

As we’ve mentioned briefly before, press coverage is one of the traditional ways musicians use to promote their releases. Despite being a traditional method, it’s still relevant to today’s context as people still absorb media daily. 

Press coverage can take on many different forms. You can get press coverage from your local radio station to a university's magazine. You can also reach out to Spotify playlist curators for song placement. The options are endless so it’s important to narrow them down using your target audience and campaign’s goal. 

     2. Social media 

Another way to promote your music campaign is to communicate with your followers through social media platforms. Many artists begin the musician journey by promoting their music on social media such as Doja Cat and Billie Eilish. Through this method, you can connect with your audience with a personal approach that eventually amplifies your campaign’s message and result.

This is an organic and free way to promote your campaign; however, it is not exactly applicable to everyone. To effectively promote through social media platforms, you need a solid following, to begin with. Contrary to the idea of “blow up” as long as you’re active on social media, you need a proper strategy when it comes to building your social media presence and promoting your music using it. Learn more about how to promote your music on social media

     3. Social ads 

Compared to the other two methods, social ads are applicable for everyone as long as you have the budget for them. There are many platforms that you can advertise on such as Facebook, Spotify, Youtube, TikTok, etc. You can learn more about social ads through our review of Spotify Ads. The result from advertising on social media is straightforward - you gain more brand awareness and streams. 

Social ads allow you to reach out to a new set audience and engage with them using your music. Therefore, if you do it right, you can even build your fanbase through social ads. However, the process of setting up an ad account for each platform can be tiring and complicated to keep track of all of them. 

At Base for Music, we simplify the process of running social ads for musicians. Thus, to accelerate your musical career, you can use Base for Music to amplify your music campaign’s reach and result. 

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