If you have a creative passion like music, you undoubtedly want to share your talent with the world. Ideally, you will even make a living with your art. The problem is figuring out how to get your work in front of potential supporters. Rest assured, there are many ways you can promote your music. Firstfruits Music Awards (FMA) has some ideas that can help you build your audience as a musician and create a successful career.
Treat your musical passion like a business
If you're going to make money with your music, treat it like a legit job. Start by registering a business entity, like a limited company. Then, open up a business bank account for your company, and make sure any income you make as a musician, plus any expenses you incur—like a recording studio session—go through that bank account.
When working on any music project it’s important to budget for every aspect of the production and promotion, drafting agreements where necessary. For example, if you’ve engaged the services of a session musician you may wish to consider using a time-hire agreement, otherwise, you could run the risk of them challenging you with copyright claims for their work.
Create a comfortable and convenient space to create
If you're going to create music for a living, you want to make sure you have a good space to get the job done. Paying to use recording studio space repeatedly can add up. One option is to set up your own home studio. This guide from Rolling Stone explains exactly what you need, including a computer, digital audio workstation, and audio interface. You can even rent out your studio to other musicians to help bring money in as you build your following.
Set up a website to promote yourself as an artist
A website is a great way to share your music with others. You can post samples for people to download, for example. This is also a forum where you can share personal information about yourself and connect with your listeners on a more intimate level. For example, you might add a blog where you share personal thoughts. Finally, a website is a great way to promote events like concerts. Create your own site using a template builder like Wix.
Use social media to reach new listeners
Once you have a website set up, drive traffic back to it using social media. When setting up social accounts, quantity doesn't win over quality. Pick a few platforms and focus on regularly posting, instead of posting across every social network you can find. Music Industry How To has a list of the best social platforms for musicians, including YouTube, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, and Instagram.
Collaborate with other artists to gain new listeners
Another way to attract new listeners is by teaming up with other musical artists. By collaborating, you'll be able to tap into their followers, and they'll be able to tap into yours. Everybody wins. While you can create music together, you can also simply cross-promote each other's work, for example via social media.
Leverage music-specific online platforms to broaden your reach
Social media is just one way the internet can help you reach a wider audience. There are also streaming platforms specifically for music lovers that can be useful. Spotify is one example. Free Your Music offers a list of alternative options, including Tidal, Apple Music, Deezer, Amazon Music, and more. By sharing music on these outlets, you can attract new listeners and build a following. Patreon is another option, where subscribers pay you directly.
Music can be a fulfilling hobby. However, it can also be a career—if you play your cards right. By taking the steps outlined above, like setting up a formal business entity and drawing up contracts for your work, you'll be one step closer to making a living with your music.
FMA is a global contest for emerging and independent Christian songwriters to showcase their material. Although the winner’s grand prize of £25,000 is an attractive proposition, FMA’s aim is to offer songwriters the very best experience of any song contest. This will be achieved through engaging symposiums and mentoring opportunities to foster artistic growth, mission trips and workshops aimed at helping songwriters delve deeper into scripture. In addition, song contestants will gain access to a wide range of added value benefits through FMA's sponsors and partners. For more information please visit www.firstfruits.co
This article was written and kindly submitted by Jennifer Scott.