It’s an exciting time to be a musician. Aside from all the hardcore gear and software at your disposal, there are plenty of social media platforms to market yourself. And Instagram happens to be my favorite. I mean, why wouldn’t it be? It’s easy to use and requires minimal investment but the results are great. Plus, you probably spend a lot of time on your personal account, so why not make a new account that’s only dedicated to your music?
In this article, I’ll be providing you a comprehensive guide on music marketing tips for Instagram.
1. Identify Your Audience
So just like any other marketing avenue, you’ll have to go ahead and identify your target audience first. Keep in mind that a large majority of folks that use Instagram are aged 18 to 29 so if that’s the age group you’re targeting, Instagram is the perfect fit. If not, you’re better off exploring other social media platforms, perhaps social media or handing out flyers at your neighborhood pub. That might be a better fit for you at this point.
2. Get Yourself a Business Account
First things first, get yourself a business account. On the outside, this pretty much looks like your regular Instagram account, but at the backend, you get access to amazing analytics tools. Up until a few years ago, Insta users could only monitor analytics via third-party tools, but all that has changed thanks to Instagram’s business account. Once you switch to a business account, you’ll be able to gain insight on how your campaign is performing.
You’ll also gain crucial insight about your audience including the number of impressions, follower information and reach. In turn, all this information can be used to formulate targeted campaigns.
3. Go Visual
Needless to say, Instagram is all about great visuals which means, you’ll really have to up your game with stellar images and videos. Whether you’re posting images from your live gigs or backstage shots, you’ll likely gain a good fan following if your pictures are all high-quality. You don’t necessarily have to stage all of your shots – try to be as natural as possible but be sure to maintain brand consistency.
Alternatively, if you’re not so good high-end software, you can use Canva to create your post. This is a free online graphic-design tool that offers drag and drop functionality. Almost anybody can use it after a few tutorials.
4. It’s All In The Hashtags
Similar to Twitter, Instagram is pretty big on hashtags. It’s one of the most organic ways folks connect to people and accounts that match their interests, and it’s also a great way to market your music. People like to browse through different hashtags to find new accounts to follow. Potential followers also use the explore tab that connects folks to relevant posts based on their interests.
So how do you decide on the best hashtags based ? Well, for starters, create one for your own music. Keep in mind that your hashtag needs to be something short and trendy that people would like to share. It could also be your band’s name or an album name – whatever suits your posts.
As for other hashtags that you can use for your posts, understand that relevance is critical. Your overall goal should be to identify hashtags that will increase your reach and help you connect with your targeted audience. And all this can only begin once you start doing some research.
Go on to your competitor’s (call it what you may) or fellow artist’s account and catch a glimpse of what hashtags they are using. Make sure you only seek inspiration from accounts that have a large fan following. However, I would advise that you steer clear from hashtags that are incredibly popular since those won’t help you gain any visibility. Instead, narrow down your search, this is a more targeted approach that will prevent your post from getting lost in the sea of Instagram accounts.
5. Post on Optimal Timings
You can’t expect your post to get tons of engagement if you upload it really early at 6 AM when your followers are still battling daylight with their eyes. Figuring out optimal timings should be a crucial part of your marketing strategy – for any platform.
According to a study conducted by CoSchedule, most active Instagram users can be found online on Mondays and Wednesdays starting 8 to 9 AM. But this data can obviously be subject to change. It’s your job to figure out when YOUR followers are most active and that’s where follower’s insight from your business account will help you.
Additionally, you don’t necessarily have to directly post content either. You can use popular scheduling apps such as ScheduGram to get the job done for you.
6. Stories, Stories & Stories
If you’re not using stories to get the word out about your music, then you’re definitely missing out on a lot. 2019 is definitely the year of video and short-form content and that’s primarily how stories come into place. Unlike videos that require a lot of editing and work in general, stories are a relatively convenient way to create content on the go and you can also use hashtags for extra measure. The fun part about creating stories is that you can get as creative as you want. You don’t necessarily always have to talk business, let your fans get to know the real you. In the long run, all this will help you garner more attention for your music.
Post glimpses of your live performance or talk to your fans about your latest songs or what mixers you’re using. This is a create way to nurture your community and fan base.
7. Cross-Promote Content
Posting content can seem tricky when you’re a beginner on Instagram. But the good news is that you can leverage followers from your other social media accounts by cross-promoting posts.
What this essentially means is to reshare the photo you’ve posted on Instagram on other social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. An interesting study pointed out that such posts receive more engagement, allowing you to grow your following across multiple accounts.
8. Be Prepared to Talk About Yourself… A lot
When you’re a beginner, you may feel obliged to hold back details for fear of self-promotion. Rest assured, you need not worry about such things since it’s exactly what social media marketing is all about. Hence, feel free to be as loud and flamboyant as you want. So whether you’re writing a new song or are buying new gear, don’t shy away from a little bit of self-promotion.
Besides, the only successful way to market yourself on Instagram is to post content regularly so make the most out of all your announcements!
9. Tag Brands and Venues
Much like other major social networking platforms, Instagram allows you to tag different accounts to your post. This is a great way to increase visibility. Now, you don’t want to go too crazy with this strategy as it can get annoying but give credit where credit is due.
For instance, some smart ways to tag others include boosting brands whose products you’re using while performing (such as clothing and gear). Alternatively, you can also tag venues and thank them for their hospitality. They might end up reposting your content on their feed which will help you gain more followers.
Tagging fellow musicians and celebrities (who have inspired you along the way) can also help you gain more recognition as a musician. You can also hunt up accounts that feature musicians and tag them to boost your number of followers.
10. Talk to Your Fans
This is the first thing they teach you in customer service: reply to every comment. Yes, it’s , and yes, it might seem like a lot of work but hear me out. These people look up to you and at the end of the day, what’s the fan in making music if you don’t have people to cheer you on or a crowd to support you.
Connect with your followers. Post pictures of meet and greets and answer their questions. Maybe they’d like to know more about your songs or are looking for a shout-out. You can also post actionable tips on taking care of equipment. Bottom line: don’t disappoint your fans since they’re the very same people who will promote your music.
11. Go Live
Another great way to connect with your followers and nurture your fan-base is to go live. Whether it’s you singing your favorite songs or talking about your favorite lyrics, going live will help you create a special bond with your audience that will eventually help you market your music.
Wrapping it All Up
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading these music marketing tips for Instagram. You can, of course, create your own strategies tailored to your individual needs. Either way, social media is the most effective and economical way to get the word out about your music.
Do you have any actionable tips for fellow musicians? Let me know in the comments section below. We’re all here to help each other now, aren’t we?