So, you’re a shit-hot producer DJ type with the phattest multi-genre melding beats on earth, or maybe you’re the shining star in the next Mercury award-winning super band? Either way, blogs can’t wait to hear from you and share your music!
But here’s the thing…
Your music might be life-changing, but if your approach isn’t up to scratch, you stand more chance of winning the lottery than getting featured on the average music blog. So don’t gamble on whether or not your music gets picked up by the blogs, possibly depriving the world of your talents. Read this guide. With a bit of luck and perseverance, plus your kick-ass music, your tunes will get the recognition they deserve.
So without further ado, here is a hot-ass selection of insider tips that’ll help you get adored across the blogosphere…
Before we even think about approaching blogs, how about laying some foundations. Get yourself on Facebook and Twitter. Follow all the blogs you love. Add them to a list. See what they’re up to and get in on the action. Share, comment, retweet, etc. but meaningfully. Don’t just set phasers to “Auto-RT”.
Taking an active interest in the blog prior to requesting a feature is just good manners and it will get noticed.
Comment on blogs
Remember it’s all about getting involved. But don’t just spam a link to one of your tunes and hope they’ll ‘appreciate your comment’. Contribute something to the conversation. Older blog posts soon run out of steam when it comes to comments, so get noticed by commenting on these. It makes you look like you’ve taken the time to go through the blog. Furthermore, most blogs have a SoundCloud account that you can comment on too.
Remember, you’re playing the medium-long game, so don’t write a comment and then email 5 mins later and think you’ve “networked”.
Submit music to the blogs you love
Stands to reason, right? Chances are if you like them, they’ll like you. Maybe even mention in the email that your track is similar to something else they’ve featured.
Address the blog as a fan, not just an artist. A little honest flattery never hurt.
Call me biased, and yes I am but blogs love having something no other blogs have. If you really want to grab their attention, offer exclusivity if even for only a week and give the blog at least a week to get the track live.
Start the conversation early, plan this way in advance!
Don’t rely on mailouts
Essentially, there’s a time and place for everything and in the right context, there’s nothing wrong with mailouts. But don’t expect a high success rate. Why spam 250 blogs with little return, when you can build relationships with 10 that you can use time and time again.
If you do mass-mail blogs, always follow up with a personal email to all the sites you really want to target. Best of both, right?
Label assets properly
From “track 1” to “fwsadfhuioh”, from “DJ Awesome – ‘Best Track Ever’ version 23 not mastered extra bass high-quality bit rate for blogs and my nan” to “pants – test mix”, we’ve seen them all. How f**king lazy do you have to be not to name a file correctly? It’s not even just the files. Half the time, it’s the SoundCloud track title too! Seriously, if that’s how little you care, don’t expect the blogs to.
It’s not just crap for blogs. More importantly its crap for the lovely people who download your music. It also means you don’t get proper credit as the artist.
Make blogging you easy
If you supply correctly sized and formatted artwork, the blog will love you for it. Simply look at the blog – what images do they require? (LSM banners are 600 pixels wide, thanks for asking).
Why not take that step further and supply 100% uniquely written content for the blog to use, written in their style. Make blogging you a complete no-brainer. Blog yourself!
Make your music easy to access
If you don’t want to pay SoundClouds fairly priced and worthwhile fee’s for a proper account which enables a minimum of 1,000 downloads, then the least you can do is host the track on a quality free service.
There are some really crap file sharing services out there and it’s amazing that people use them, but they do and no blog wants to direct their valuable readers to www.adheavy-fake-download-links-scumbag-fileshare-buggery-bollox.com!
For preview purposes, always whack it up on SoundCloud or Mixcloud.
Avoid ‘email to download’
A contentious subject, yes and actually we firmly believe that obtaining an email or tweet for a download is a small ask when giving away a free track. But it will harm the amount your track will get downloaded and shared and you have to ask yourself what matters more, an email address and numbers on your social profiles, or just people having and enjoying your music?
Get tunes mastered
We know you’re giving it away for free, but the track still reflects you and promotes your amazing production skills. Its value transcends money (and let’s face it, there’s hardly any in selling much music anyway) and so if you don’t think it’s worth mastering, then is it even worth potential fans listening to it?
If you do get mastering, get the kudos, mention who and where in the metadata and on SoundCloud.
Damn, I know that sounds boring… But keep adding contacts to a spreadsheet and format it properly and it’ll save you a ton of time the next time you want to promote a new track or something. Google Docs is free and easy to use.
Channel your inner Monica and become a super-organiser.
Sharing is Caring!
Picture this. ‘DJ Awesome-Face ’ asks you to feature his new track on your blog. Of course, you oblige and put a couple of hours aside to write a lovely wee review for the future star. DJ Awesome-Face then starts promoting that same track on Facebook telling his fans to “check out my music on SoundCloud…”
That’s pretty mean, right? I think so. Not sure that blogger is going to be so keen to feature you next time..!
It’s also a less effective way of communicating with your fans. Is it not better to post on Facebook “big ups to BLOG-X for all the nice things you said about my new track – you clearly have good taste!” – rather than “here’s my new song, aren’t I awesome, look at me”?
Publically recognising the blogs that support you helps you build stronger relationships with them. As a result, will be more likely want to feature you again! It’s shocking how few artists actually do this.
While you’re at it, why not include blog features in your fan mailouts… 100 good karma tokens right there.
Ask to write for the blog
Blogging is an awesome, fun and rewarding thing but boy, is it time-consuming! Most sites will welcome a helping hand and new writers with open arms. With the editor’s permission, there’s nothing to stop you posting your own music too.
Be warned – this is not to be abused! Over-posting you’re own music may result in you being kicked out of the Matrix before you can say “SPAM”.
If all else fails… Start your own blog!
That way you can ‘big-up’ your favourite artists and blogs and use it to build relationships with other bloggers and the wider industry. Then maybe that blog you like will consider featuring you on theirs.
Long winded, I know but you’re in it for the long game, right?
If you’ve utilized even just half of these tips, the blogs should be all up in yer space right now and damn right, you deserve it. Well done. If you’re still struggling to get attention from the ‘powers that be’, then you may need to consider the possibility that your music is just not very good. Only kidding. You’re probably just ahead of your time and what the f*ck do music bloggers know anyway.
Seriously though, we love you all and we’re here to help. Any questions, or witty rebuttals, bring ‘em on.