Marketing can be a tough thing to do, and let’s face it – nobody enjoys it. Unfortunately, when you’re trying to get your name out to the masses and let them know about your music, marketing is essential. Most producers and beat makers will make many mistakes when trying to market themselves and it’s not necessarily their fault because that’s all they see everyone else doing. Let’s change this, shall we?
I’m focusing my attention on Twitter because I find it to be the best way to market yourself. If you’re not familiar with Twitter and haven’t used it much (or at all), then listen up – use it! I know that it gets a bad reputation of being a mind numbing experience because of everyone talking about themselves, with tweets like “just had a coffee!”, but it can be much more than that. It’s all about how you use it.
First, if you’re not registred with Twitter, it’s dead simple. Go to http://www.twitter.com and you will see the option to sign up. Enter your information and you’re done, it’s that easy. What’s really good about their system is that they ask you a few questions to see what areas interest you, whether it’s music, entertainment, computers, etc. Based on this, Twitter will then recommend following certain members, mostly ones that have a huge following. You don’t have to follow them, but it’s a good way to get started.
Once you’ve followed a few people, then it’s time to set up your page. You can add a background and change the colors of where your tweets will show, so be creative. You want to have something that will catch the attention of someone that is visiting your page because this is the first step in marketing yourself on Twitter, so take the time to do it right.
I have seen many pages where the background was really interesting and unique and it made that person stand out a lot. The colors are also very important because it makes a big difference if you have a black background with white text, versus a soft background and black text. The one with the soft background is going to be much easier on the eyes, and why is that important? Because you want people to read your tweets!
Make your page look attractive and unique
Get peoples’ attention with your page background and color scheme
Following others is a great way to get started, however, getting people to follow you is tough. Really tough. There are various ways you can do this, such as posting a link to your Twitter page on other websites, like Facebook, SoundCloud, YouTube, Google+, or on a community forum. This is probably the best way to promote your page, but it can be a slow process. Fortunately, Twitter allows you to add hashtags, which are keywords that start with a # sign. It’s very simple: let’s say you’re posting about a beat you just made, then you could add #beats #hiphopbeats #hiphopmusic to your tweet. What does this do? It means that when people search for, let’s say, #hiphopmusic, your tweet will show up! If you do it right, your tweet can get a lot of attention and possibly go viral. There is much more to mention about this subject, so I will cover the rest in the second part of this series.
This is the most important part of this article and this is the main thing that is overlooked when people try to promote themselves on Twitter. If you haven’t realized yet, I keep mentioning that you need to promote YOU, not your beats. I strongly believe that it’s more important to network with others by way of self promotion, rather than promotion of your production (beats).
The reason why I’m saying this is because every day I see people post all about their beats. They will tweet, “Yo listen to this new track I just did”, which to me is a huge turnoff. When I follow someone on Twitter, I want to follow someone that will add substance to my feed, I don’t want someone who is just going to throw their beat promotions down my throat. When you have someone tweeting like that daily, multiply that by thousands, and that’s why it gets annoying.
The best way to promote yourself is to do just that – self promotion! Instead of telling your followers that you just finished a beat and then give them a link to listen to it, why not just casually mention it instead? Something like, “Just got out of the lab, hopefully this final mix is good enough”, and then link to it with your SoundCloud, YouTube, or whatever other link you have.
Do you see how that simple combination of words has a much kinder affect? It doesn’t look like spam, and it certainly doesn’t look like self promotion. Instead, it looks more like you’re just telling everyone:
You’re in the studio
You’re working hard
You’re hoping your beat is good enough
By doing it like this, you’re showing them that you’re actively in the recording studio (whether it’s professional or your bedroom), and that you’re working your ass off. Then you’re following it up by saying that you’re hoping it’s good enough, which to me comes across as your ego hasn’t exploded, and it’s basically a question to the reader. Since you then put a link to your beat, people might answer and tell you that your beat is good enough and it sounded great. In other words, you’re being humble and asking for their feedback, but they don’t even know you’re asking them something.
Let Them Know About You
When you’re telling people about your beats, they will probably listen to them, but maybe not. Why? Because they might not know anything about you! It’s important to promote your music, but it’s much more important that they know about YOU. Remember, there are thousands of other producers and beat makers that are pushing their beats out there every single day and posting that all over Twitter, so you have make sure that people know who you are and what you do.
In your profile, it gives you the option to put a short biography about yourself, to which you should definitely fill out, but you need to also tell them in your tweets. It’s a very fine line though because the other mistakes I see many make is they use their Twitter account to post anything. Posting personal tweets and then posting professional tweets with the same account is what you should not do. If you really want to go nuts with regular tweets all day long about whatever you just ate, or how you feel about the officiating of last night’s game, then you should create another Twitter account, and use that one regularly. This way you’ll have your personal and professional tweets totally separate and you will come across as professional when using your professional account! After all, this is what you want to accomplish when trying to promote yourself.
How To Manage Multiple Accounts
If you do decide to have multiple accounts then you can post back and forth between them by using TweetDeck: http://tweetdeck.com/ You can either download it as an app for your mobile device, or for your desktop computer. TweetDeck is also available as an add-on for the Google Chrome browser (that’s what I use) and it works beautifully.
It works just like the regular Twitter website or app but instead, when you want to tweet something, you choose which account you want to post it from. It could be from one account, or all of them!
What I’ve offered here is advice on how you should get your name out there and to let everyone know who you are and what you do. It’s very important to promote your beats but you must take the time to craft good tweets, rather than just spewing quick ones that rarely gets peoples’ attention. It takes time, but after a while you will get used to tweeting a certain way.
In the second part of this series (coming soon), I will cover other aspects of Twitter such as retweeting, replying to others’ tweets, posting pictures, and having lots of followers versus small but loyal followers.