We're aware that the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has heavily impacted artists and creators globally, especially when it comes to engaging with fans.
The music industry is coming together now to find alternative ways to engage with fans and create exciting content while in self-isolation. We’ve pulled together some tips below to assist you in exploring these new opportunities as well as some best practice ‘action items’ to consider focusing time on:
- Organize a Live Stream. Consider hosting a live-stream for your fans! This could be anything from a ‘cook with me’ session, collaborating with other artists to have a live chat, or even hosting a concert. We’ve created a Live Streaming Playbook (attached at the bottom of this page) that can help guide you through setting up a live stream on a variety of platforms and give you tips for each!
- Social Media Calendar. Create and gather assets and plan a social calendar. Engaging with your fans on social media is super important, but especially now! Keep your content cohesive and consistent and try to develop yourself as a ‘brand’ on socials.
- Engage with Fans. Find ways to directly engage with your fans. Why not invite your fans to cover your song and post it to Instagram? You can set up some jam sessions, create a dance to one of your tracks, and more to engage personally and directly with your fans.
Review and update
- Social Media health check and updates. Here’s a little checklist: are profile pictures and banner images, bio and links up to date across all platforms? Consider spicing up your artist pages with playlists of your favorite music or directives to listen to your song. This could also be the time to take care of your YouTube Channel! Ensuring your video content is organized, updating your Channel Image and banners, and more can give your channel a needed refresh!
- Access your artist pages on digital services. Make sure to claim your profiles in all streaming services where available (on services such as Spotify, Apple Music, and now Amazon) and update them with artist images, bios, new playlists, etc.
- Review your website. Build or renovate your artist website. Make sure your social handles, streaming profiles, and career highlights are up to date!
- Repertoire Maintenance. Compile a document containing a database of your repertoire with all the attached metadata. This means tracking your releases’ full metadata, including audio duration, ISRC codes and catalogue numbers, artist and contributor credits, and titles.
- Become a Data Expert. Analytics and data are invaluable resources for artists, managers, and labels and are almost easier than ever to obtain and review in the digital space. Take some time to pull as much data as you can about your audiences, releases, streaming information, and more to do things like plan future tours, discover where your audiences are most engaged (and where you may need to spend more time marketing), etc. Chartmetric, an incredible tool to stay across your data, is offering free premium access for independent artists for the next 8 weeks. You can learn more and sign up here.
Marketing and Promotion
- Create and update your EPK. EPKs and One Sheet are the best way to share information about your project and your next releases with music professionals. Useful tools for creating professional one sheets are Adobe Spark, Canvas, and Wix.
- Promotion. Research blogs, magazines, influencers, and independent playlists that you would like to work with for your future releases. This is the time to explore new directions for your music and collaborations. Be adventurous!
- Brands. Research brands you may like to collaborate with in the future use or even touch base with brands you’re already loving. There could be potential partnership opportunities already out there!
- Timelines. Create a timeline for your project: what’s going to happen in the next 6-12 months time? Laying out a release schedule, promotional ideas, social push events, etc. are great things to focus on now to plan for the future.
- Merch. Review existing merch inventory and consider brainstorming new ideas for your next line.
- Team. Think about the team you need around you. Who can help you and work with you in the future? Whether that means graphic designers, photographers, or even a data wizard to help you understand your Analytics, now may be the time to reach out to potential new team members.
Learn and stay informed
- It’s always a good idea as an artist (especially an independent one!) to learn more about this industry. There are a lot of resources out there such as podcasts, blogs, newsletters, and more. We’ve linked a few of our favorites here: AWAL Blog, Behind The Music Business Podcast, Dissecting The Digital Dollar MMF, Music.ally
- We also wanted to share some associations who are putting together funds and guidelines to help artists during this time such as Help Musician, Arts Council of England, MusiCares, Bandcamp, Spotify COVID-19 Music Relief, American Federation of Musicians, and Musician Union. You can find more directories and lists of foundations like these on the AWAL website, Billboard and the LA Times.
If you have any questions, our team is here to support you. Please get in touch with us via the Contact Us page on your Portal. Visit our AWAL Updates: COVID-19 article to stay up to date with any changes to our processes.