Sunday, April 18, 2010

Webinar Review: The Songwriter and Social Media - Putting it all Together

While doing some research on the use of social media, I found a free webinar to attend last week on the site http://www.thesongwriteronline.com/. It was entitled "The Songwriter and Social Media - Putting it all Together." The author is Matthew Moran, who was generous enough to put this together and conduct the webinar free of charge as his way of giving back to the community of songwriters. In this post I will summarize what I learned from participating in the webinar.

First of all Matthew provided a list of important considerations that must be part of the songwriters plan of action. These are:

  1. The formulation of a marketing plan
  2. An assessment of your talent / ability
  3. Internet presence / creation of a website
  4. Product / merchandise to sell
  5. The creation of a mailing lists
  6. Building a list of useful contacts
  7. Becoming adept with social media and how to use it effectively

Your marketing plan should create an incentive for fans to follow you. Matthew recommended making sure to give them something that they can walk away with. Perhaps in exchange for their email address you could give them access to a free music download (Just one suggestion).

You will need a website, preferably a blog. Stay away from Flash websites as search engines do not index these well, meaning that your site will not show up in search results for desirable search terms. Matthew recommends Wordpress to create a free blog website. Provide visitors to the website the opportunity to listen to your music, find out where you will be playing, join a newsletter mailing list and access to buy your music or related merchandise.

Create a free CD sampler to give out when you play live.

Build your mailing list of emails and a newsletter that you can send out to let fans know about your upcoming performances. You can use an email marketing service such as Newsletter Builder to create your email newsletter and maintain your lists of recipients. This will also allow you to track how many people have opened the email and clicked upon the links that you may have provided in it.

You will need contacts at venues that play live music as well as other songwriters (working songwriters and performers) to help you find the gigs you will need to present your music to the masses.

Social media can be useful - emulate those who are having success. Don't spend too much time on this at the expense of the other things you need to be doing. Video is becoming increasingly important. Learn how to create your own channel on YouTube and promote this - create videos of your performances to post on your website or Facebook profile.

This was just a rough outline of the webinar, but I hope you will find it useful.

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