Tutorials / 31 January 2018

A Musician’s Guide To Self-Promotion

It’s time we looked at our online behaviour with a new perspective. As suggested in our earlier post about increasing fans and followers, frequent engagement with your audience will give your profile a persona, but you’ll have to be wary of how it shows on social media. Is the content you share meant to educate and inspire, or are you just clogging up your audience’s timelines with promotional posts?

The line between self-promotion and spam shouldn’t be flirted with, but with a few handy tips, we’ll help you make sure you stay on the true side of the line.

Capture it all

Your journey as a musician – from your first beat to your first album – is going to be littered with eureka! moments and learning experiences. What you should aim to do, is capture them all. Practicing a new solo? Set up a camera and film your attempts. Playing at a gig? Get your friends in the crowd to shoot some images and videos of you in your element. A fan has just bought some of your merch? Get a snap and tag that fan online. Busking? Have a sign with a hashtag or your social media handle in case your new-found fans share pictures of you in the moment.

Get organised

Now you’ve got heaps of material at your disposal. Some of it shows homely and intimate moments of your musical ambitions, and some of it may be you showing off your strut onstage. Sharing them all through your social feed without curation or organisation will clutter your followers’ feeds, and you don’t want that!

Ask questions of the content you have collected. Is the sound quality good or poor? Is it difficult to see you in pictures and videos? Do you have a crowd, or is no one watching? Create folders and organise your material based on its quality – high, mid, or low. Set standards for your posts, and it will be much easier to curate your feed. Don’t be too eager to dismiss your low quality material – they’ll come in handy for the occasional highlight reels you’d wanna send out!

Show your personality

It’s not wrong to use social media to reach out to the masses, but if all your posts point to your band’s gigs and merch, too much of self-promotion will dehumanise your profile. Add personality and variety to what you share. There are different guides and ratios you could follow to tell your story on social media – be it new music that you’re putting out, or other artists’ posts you share with your followers with mutual interests. Think back to the days you followed your idols on social for glimpses into their personal lives and recording sessions, or for relevant material stemming from mutual interests you share with them. It’s your turn to be someone’s idol.

Tag team

The variety in the posts you share opens up different avenues for you to express your sentiments and gratitude. Like your rigs and gears onstage, or your family and friends in the crowd, be sure to tag them wherever you can, and share your finest moments with them. Where you’d caption a picture of you performing with “me rocking the stage!”, credit the products and people that made your special night possible.

Take it slow

In all the excitement of sharing with your followers, be it news or new music, keep in mind that your followers are equally excited to catch up with your updates. If all that greets them are posts insisting they buy your merch or attend your gig, the lack of personality in your updates could influence them to dismiss you as spam. There is a learning curve to sending out updates and content that is indeed share-worthy, and shouldn’t be rushed. You may even get feedback and opinions thrown your way – some constructive, some not – so use them as learning points to make sure you don’t fall into the category of spam.


Sending out a Shout on BandLab is an effective way to amplify your projects, or just to share updates to your creative and music-making processes. Shout to share today, and you may just stumble upon pearls of wisdom to promote yourself right.

Get started making your own music and share them with the world on BandLab.

Want more content like this? Check out our blog.

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