YouTube for Musicians - Still relevant?

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« on: August 10, 2021, 08:14:44 PM »
Hi everyone! Hope you are all doing fine :-)

I am always on the lookout to hear from musicians how they currently use YouTube, and what their goals are with their music/artist channel.
Full disclosure, I love to help musicians with tips and tricks on growing a fan base on YouTube.
But, I also notice that some tips that I think are needed are not the tips that musicians actually want.

So, I want to offer my help here (no strings attached, not a sleezy sales call or anything, just to make that clear :-) and share YouTube growth information with YouTube musicians from around the world.

Here are some tips in advance to help your channel grow and get more fans:
(This is also an excerpt from a recent blogpost, but it was very fitting for this post :-)

-YouTube Channel design
Having a great Banner and thumbnail design makes a huge difference for your future fans.
It will show how serious you are with your music, and also gives a "feel" of the music style you are going for.
Setting this up is not to difficult with free software like Canva, and is pretty much a 'set it and forget it' type of thing.

-Optimize for search as much as possible.
This one can be tricky, especially if you only upload your own songs.
YouTube is a search enginge, and for your music to be found, it can help to have a searchable title and description.
So, one way is to add some more "weight" to your titles in terms of searchable words.

A good example can be, to use longer sentences when you upload a quick video. Instead of "Me playing guitar in the yard" it can be better to use "Acoustic version of This and That song, performed by The Artist" or "Trying out my new Ibanez abc-123 guitar to play This and That song".
It is a bit more difficult if you only upload songs from your band or music project. You then only want to use titles that include the name of the band/project, and the title. In that case, you actually don't want to make them too long. No need to add any dates or locations, unless it is a liveshow in a specific place and time.
Note that a channel with only your music will not grow as quickly because you need to become a known artist first :-)
This style of YouTube channel is usually more of a Digital Portfolio, that showcases your music.

-Upload frequently, with a main focus!
Yes, you are an artist and yes, you might have tons of ideas to create content around. Or, maybe even the opposite, you have absolutly no idea what your next video should be.
In both cases, the trick is to find just one (no more than two) topics to create content around. Want to do guitar lesson videos? Vocal tips? Songwriting skills?
ONLY do that, for at least 90 days.
This will give you the chance of testing out what works for you, and it gives YouTube a chance to help your channel rank.
Both of you need to know if this is something that people actually want :-)
And, the good thing is, that this will not take up as much time as you might think. 90 days is around 12 weeks, so 12 videos if you do one a week.
Record multiple videos at once, and you are already weeks ahead!
(Batch recording also helps to stay on topic :-)

-Share, share, share.
Needless to say, if you are just starting out on YouTube, people might not know who you are and what your channel is all about.
That is why you want to share your content whenever it is fresh. (Yes, you can also share older content, but for the sake of this post, we go with new videos :-)
If you only share your own content once or twice a week, it will not be too spammy for your followers.
Combine it with other, similar content that your fans will love.
To make it easier, you can use free software that helps you to schedule your posts with easy.
Buffer and Later are great tools for that, and together they pretty much cover all main social profiles!

Bonus tip: Collaboration!
One of the more powerful ways to grow a YouTube channel is collaboration.
Find a similar YouTube musician in terms of style, audience size and artform, and do a collab!
Play a song together, do an interview or create a fun skit about a trending topic that matches your art style.

There are many more tips to share, and the journey and goal are different for every artist.
With the above tips, you can start your basic YouTube strategy and work on a solid foundation for your online music promotion.

I have more tips on the shelf, so let me know if you want to know something specific :-)

Greetings Maurice from music-mindset.com


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« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2021, 08:21:38 PM »
Thank you for sharing those tips. These are very actual points must admit, however once again goes down to algorithms 😁


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« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2021, 08:17:43 AM »
These are great tips - however, like so many “social media” guides and other guides aimed at musicians who want to release music it missies out the most important bit - HOW to get follows that you can share content to

I still urge people to go right back to the very basics of marketing - and I would argue that the traditional marketing methods are still the best, they just need a tweak for the digital/social media age

If we take something as simple as the “4 Ps” of the Marketing Mix: Product, Price, Place, Promotion

Product - It should go without saying that before you even think about releasing music or starting a YouTube channel you need a good PRODUCT - ie good songs, entertaining content etc.

This forum is the perfect place to test your “product” if you want to release a song

Price - this is an interesting one as the vast majority of your content will now be free :-( If you want to sell tracks you need to set a price point and balance being “too cheap” as it could de-value the product or too expensive people won’t purchase

Place - In the digital age this is more about the platform and presentation, which I think the article above covers fantastically well for YouTube

Promotion - THIS is the missing step in most “guides” - HOW do you get people to visit your fantastic YouTube channel, Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud etc. Etc (the PLACE) to see your wonderful PRODUCT, which is at the perfect PRICE

Again, the traditional Marketing Promotion techniques are still valid - and are especially powerful when combined with social media analytics and insights

There are also loads of sales tools (paid advertising, free samples, direct marketing etc.) than can be used to target users most likely to buy, follow or share your content - but the real power comes when you clearly define EXACTLY what your target market to do and THEN use the most appropriate tool for this purpose - which are the bones of a marketing strategy

Eg there are different approaches you can take to get her leads, followers and shares as opposed to trying to sell a song or album

Social media has made “marketing” soooooo easy that I think people just “dive in” without researching the tools available to be successful

Google is your friend and a “boring” textbook on marketing may contain more golden nuggets than a jazzy “click bait” how to get a gazillion followers on Facebook video

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