So you added a blog on your website, posted a “Welcome to my blog” post and it’s been collecting dust ever since huh? Between making music, practicing, setting up gigs, promoting your music, and (possibly) sleeping, who has time to maintain a blog right? Well I’m here to tell you it’s easier than you may think. It will take a bit of time and dedication, but once you commit to it, it will be a great addition to your marketing tool belt.
Remember the goal of a blog is to drive traffic to your website. To do this you must add inviting content often, get others involved, and generate interest. Non-artist types delight in reading about the life of a musician regardless of how un-glamourous it really is. Fans want a behind-the-scenes pass to you, your band and your music.
Your blog posts don’t have to be long or involved. Sometimes a short five or six line update is all a fan has time to read anyway. You can post many short updates and then add more in-depth blog topics bi-weekly or monthly. As mentioned above, you are already making music, practicing, setting up gigs, promoting your music, so why not document it along the way? This will not only bring fans into your world, but will give you a nice record of your musical journey as well.
Here are 5 ideas to jumpstart your blog today:
1) The making of your album. The most obvious way to draw fans in is to give them access to your music making process. If you have a songwriting session, commit 20 more minutes to update your blog about how it went. Maybe share one verse as a sort of ‘sneak peek’ of what’s to come. Write about your inspiration for the song and how the idea came about.
When you’re in the studio take pictures and videos and blog about it. Share the funny little things that happen in the booth. Or the frustrations of a bad session. Good news or bad news – it’s all news that fans are interested in.
Blog about the process of choosing your CD title, what songs made the cut (or didn’t make it ) onto your album, choosing your cover art, etc. Give each of these their own post so you have many posts spread out over a few days.
2) The band – a retrospective. This is the type of post true fans crave. Gather up those old childhood photos of you playing in the 6th grade honor band, or you singing in the church choir and post about your humble beginnings. Fans want to know where you came from, how you got started, how the band came up with their name, and all the other details of the Making of the Band.
To capitalize on this idea you could even do one post a week highlighting each band member, then a final piece about the forming of the band. Even if you’re a solo artist, producer, label owner, or other music executive – people want to know your story. Pinto and the Bean covers this well in a couple posts: The Birth of Our Band and 93 Band Name Ideas We Had Before Choosing ‘Pinto and the Bean’
3) From the stage. Similar to the ‘making of your album’ idea, this blog topic puts the fan on the other side of the action. Instead of just being a spectator, you can take them backstage and on to the stage by writing about it from your perspective. Have a crew member or friend snap some shots from the stage so you can include your ‘view’ while performing. And who knows….a few fans may even see themselves in the crowd photo and Tweet or re-post that blog to other potential fans. (remember….it’s all about driving traffic and creating interest!).
LA Music Blog as a great example highlighting one band’s performance from the stage. Although written from a fan perspective, you or your band can do the same thing but in your own blogging voice. Piano man Tyler Kealey does a great job of this in a recent post on a Christmas time performance.
As well as indie rock band Dexter Jones for a recent After Race Concert.
4) Respond to an opinion article. There are many music industry blogs spouting opinions, predictions and rants about the state of music today. Find one (or more) and either write a post in support or opposition to it. Comment on the original post with a link to your post. Then make sure to link back to the original, especially if you are adding quotes from it in your own post. Here are a few popular music industry blogs to start with:
Music Think Tank
Digital Music News
5) Interview another like band or artist in your area. If you’ve been around the local music scene for awhile I’m sure you’re familiar with other players in your area. You may have even shared the stage or a few beers a couple times, so why not work together? Offer to post an interview with a ‘like’ band or artist in your area. Hopefully they are the blogging type as well and they will return the favor. If so, this will create instant crossover fans because the people who listen to the other band will most likely enjoy your music as well.