Importance of Radio.
Being an indie artist is a full-time job, whether you are working independently or signed to an independent label. You’re sure to have a lot to do already. Getting gigs, strategizing marketing techniques, social media insanity, booking shows and writing new lyrics or music, to name a few. With all of this going on, radio campaigning is not something you want to bother about. Lately, with the invention of internet, indie artists and indie bands, along with the rest of the world, have almost abandoned this age-old source of career establishment.
As I have mentioned in my blog How to Become a Better Indie Artist?, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter kind of platforms do not require any expertise and are the best place to advertise yourself. YouTube is the new radio. Perhaps, this is the reason why indie artists say they do not find the need to campaign on radio these days. Some say because their audience is not listening to radio anymore, some say radio is only for major label artists. Another reason is lack of time and resources to even consider radio campaigning in their marketing plan. I am going to tell you: don’t abandon radio.
Those of you who have read my blog Email Marketing for Indie Artists, would know that 91% of internet users use email every day. Your chances of reaching out to fans with email are pretty damn good. You will be surprised to know that e-mail is 40 times more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined. 77% of consumers prefer to receive permission-based marketing e-mails over other advertising avenues. For every dollar spent on email marketing, the average return is a whopping $44.25! Now go, tweet that! Or forget it, it’s really just a waste of time.
What I am trying to say here is- never undermine the power of marketing tools that you think are most uncool and outdated. There must be a reason why they still exist. Why do cellphones still come with an inbuilt radio? Think about it.
I understand that today’s generation is listening to music via YouTube and other direct streaming platforms. You would think that you are more likely to be discovered on one of these platforms. You are mistaken. Discovery tends to happen more through other channels. Nielsen reported that 48% of people discovered music mostly through the radio; YouTube scored a mere 7%, in 2012. In 2014, Nielsen reported that radio listenership went from 243.7 million weekly listeners in 2013 to 244.4 million in 2014. The key factor cited by them is the localization of stations and their curated content, making it very easy for the radio to get interwoven in peoples’ lives. Now that is something to keep in mind while planning a music tour.
I am not saying that you should drop everything and focus entirely on radio. I am only saying that radio is not dead. Every town still has tastemaker DJs. You have no idea when radio might just take you to the next level in your career; and this is true for artists of all genres, at every level.
In my experience of interviewing distribution companies, incredible artists, bands and labels, I have seen the radio take unknowns to globally recognized names. It has the power to take your voice to international listeners and make a difference in your career. Glassnote Records made some internationally famous artists go up the charts in airplay as well as sales, by focusing much of their efforts on radio in every market. Touring was another major factor. When you are out on a music tour, remember to keep your website updated with new pictures and random videos of the tour to keep your fans engaged. If you have no idea about creating and maintaining a website, there are companies like Hyper Effects that can help you connect with your target audience efficiently. Hyper Effects is one stop for your website, marketing and cyber development requirements. It helps you to create a website to display your talent or sell your indie music or indie art.
Like I said in my blog Music Festivals, any indie band or a solo indie artist, no matter how talented, is likely not going to become famous overnight. Arctic Monkeys became popular locally and then across the north of England and caught the attention of the British Press and BBC Radio. From the customer’s perspective, exploring radio stations and other sources of independent music, they too are now free to make their own decisions as to what is hot and what is not. Understand that success doesn’t happen in a day. Be reasonable in your aspirations and act smartly. Don’t give up on radio. There are millions of people, across the globe, still listening, and still awaiting the next ‘new thing’.
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