Guide: How to Promote a Mixtape
One of the most common questions we get asked here by artists is how to promote their mixtape. There are a few posts that touch on this subject we have previously published, but we will take the time here to break it down all over again. There are many elements to a successful campaign for any form of music, whether it is a mixtape, video, or single, which must be addressed. The artist who does the best in all areas of marketing and promotions is likely to fare best in the new music industry where hundreds of mixtapes are released daily. The question to ask yourself is: How will can my mixtape stand apart from the other 200 mixtapes released today?
The answer to that question for artists is usually “The music will set me apart”, however I am here to tell you that is the wrong answer. The music is obviously important to convert new fans, however when planning a promotion you need to take into account all the steps that a fan must get through to actually start listening to the music. Before a new fan can discover an artist they must first be presented with an proposition to reach the mixtape, meaning you have to put the project in front of them, whether email marketing, website advertising, social media, etc. the first step is for them to see your offering, typically in the form of an advertisement. Once the fan sees the ad, they will first decide whether the text or image of the promotion is worth clicking, this factor takes into account the buzz an artist has and the actual visual that accompanies the mixtape project. Then once the fan clicks the ad they will again have to be impressed by the landing page presentation before they will actually engage with the music. Once we have them here then we hope the music can speak for itself, that is up to the artist!
So to break down the first few steps further here are all the key elements of a successful mixtape promotion
- Create the Music (Creating the best possible product is the first step, and this blog is not about telling you how to create, so that is up to you as an artist!)
- Create the Visuals
- Mixtape Cover – The mixtape cover is THE MOST IMPORTANT aspect of the promotion. The mixtape cover will make up most of the other ads, email blasts, and of course on sites like Datpiff.com it is the only graphic present with the artists’ name and the only visual to rely on.
- Site Skin – This is a feature of key mixtape sites like Datpiff.com and Coast2CoastMixtapes.com, where most in depth promotions include a skin of the entire site. If you want to create a successful campaign this is a key ad unit to include in your plan.
- Advertisements – The most common sizes of ads are 728×90, 300×250 and 160×600 so create these sizes and implement with whatever marketing and promotion company you are working with, or do it yourself by creating an ad campaign in Google Adwords to display your ads on relevant sites across the internet.
- Plan The Promotion
- Create Project Outline – At this step once you have you have the creative items completed it is time to develop the promotion. The first step is to pick a release date and work backwards from there to create a timeline for each step of the promotion. Typically you would want to pick a date at least 2 weeks into the future so you have time to partner with key promotion companies and have time to schedule your promotion with them. Email blasts typically have a schedule a few weeks out, so don’t expect them to send the minute you contact them.
- Find Strategic Partners – Most successful promotions will have a team behind them, so seek out a publicist, marketing company or a specific mixtape promotion company such as Coast 2 Coast Mixtapes Promotion to get all of the promotion items set up for you. If not pay attention to the next steps to be sure you are getting the most from your promotion!
- Execute PR Campaign
- Email Blasts
- Website Advertising
- Social Media Promotions
- Facebook – Facebook ads are a great way to get some more engagement with your project, they even help you create an ad once you upload a post about your project. This self service solution can be used by anyone, so once the project is out be sure to check out the Facebook Ads!
- Twitter Ads – Again their self serve solution can do wonders for your project. Get out there and experiment!
- Instagram – With a possible 1 to 1 share ratio Instagram shows the most promising return, however you cannot link to your project in with your picture post. So best would be to create engaging pictures and then link to the project in your bio of your instagram so users can go there to quickly access the project. Use sites such as TrackClipper.com to make short videos for each song of your mixtape to share with fans.
- Automation – It is always best to schedule regular promotions for your project, using tools such as Hootsuite makes this easy to execute promotions across multiple platforms and accounts. Create an educated campaign to send tweets at the best times of day to get the best results!
- All Other Social Networks – Get on as many as possible!
- Analyze Results
- Be sure you have systems in place to track results and links. Use tracking links such as bit.ly so you can see the amount of clicks each type of social media is sending you. Also compare results across all mixtape platforms for plays, shares, comments, downloads, etc.
- Use the data to make a better plan for next time!!
Even using all of these methods can garner less than spectacular results, the important thing is to keep grinding it out and releasing music using an educated plan until the plan, music and fans come together to make the perfect storm and get your mixtape out virally to millions of fans!
Courtesy of New Industry Tips