Promoting your Music on YouTube
Promoting your Music on YouTube isn’t exactly revolutionary. In recent years, the content-sharing platform has beefed up its incentives for creatives looking to grow a subscriber-base and monetize their music. For the DIY musician, the challenge is rising above that seemingly infinite noise of YouTube content and its pesky algorithms. Here we’ll outline how to make your channel a hub of unstoppable, watchable content that the algorithms just can’t keep at bay.
Put Your Best-Flick Forward.
Have your best or newest music playing at the start of the page or readily clickable. A majority of viewers decide whether or not they’re going to subscribe to a channel in the first 30 seconds of scanning the page. If they’ve ended up on your page then that’s already a great start for you. But now you need to hook them. Have your newest release or most popular upload playing automatically as they enter your channel. That, or have a welcome video that immediately makes the page personable between you and the viewer.
You don’t want it to be hard for your viewer to find more of what they like. At the start and end of videos, as well as throughout your profile, make your call-to-action easy to see, and simple to click. The Backlink channel with Brian Dean has a really useful tutorial that explains the “In and Outs” of creating an effective call-to-action as well as tips on all aspects of YouTube strategy. A call-to-action can be linked to your Instagram, Spotify, and your website ( get one if you don’t have one!). Also, end your videos with explicit calls-to-action for viewers to leave a comment. Anything that will provoke further engagement among viewers is key.
Keep it Consistent
Choosing a day and time of the week to consistently upload content will more likely gain you a consistent fan base. Followers and fellow artists from your community are more invested in you if they can rely on you to stick to an upload schedule. You’ve most likely spent a lot of time developing your band or music to fit a certain style. You want the feelings fans associate with that style to transfer over into your YouTube page. Work on developing your page to mirror your music. This could mean creating a layout with video thumbnails and color schemes that match that of your album artwork.
No Returns Without Tags
The tags you choose to represent your videos with will be your first line of attack in ranking among the ocean of YouTube videos. You want to cast a wide net but you also want to be casting it in the right place. Tags are the primary source that YouTube algorithm’s use to place your video.
Your first tag should match the keyword you have chosen to represent your video and should also be included in the video title. If the video in question is your “Music Vlog at the Hollywood Bowl,” than an appropriate first keyword might be “Hollywood Bowl or “Music Vlog.” For your next view tags, use variations of that keyword. Perhaps “Gig Vlog,” “Vlog,” or “Hollywood Music.” For your final few tags, use general terms that encapsulate the big picture of your video: “live music” or “LA music scene.”
Another way to get your tags working for you is by using the same ones as other popular videos that are similar to your’s. Websites like TubeBuddy and vidIQ allow you to quickly check the tags of high ranking videos allowing you to slap on the same tags for a chance to show up beside them in a search.
This isn’t Twitter folks. 140 characters isn’t excessive. In fact, research has shown that writing longer descriptions for your videos actually helps your ranking. 100-200 word descriptions seems to be the sweet spot here. This is because the more specific you are, the more YouTube bots have to work with when sorting you for organic searches.
By the same logic, longer videos, usually 8-15 minutes long, rank better. Just by making longer content you are quickly increasing the chances that your video will get more watch time. So if you’re wondering how to turn that 3 and a half minute music video you’re premiering into ideal-length content, get creative. Add bonus content to the ends of your music videos; a behind-the-scenes feature or heartfelt message from you and your band to your followers serves two purposes. It gets that run-time up closer to the sweet spot and it humanizes you and your content, giving fans a connection to you and your band that would otherwise be lost in cut-and-dry music video.
Make this Space a HomeMany YouTubers rely on one another to promote their own channels. Teaming up with other artists, collaborating, or guest appearing in each others’ videos is mutually beneficial when both parties exchange niches of fans and followers. Websites like youbloomConnect make this co-marketing simple by matching you with compatible artists that suit your style and are based nearby. This makes collaboration seamless and if you end up finding a good match, youbloomConnect will even help you to set up gigs with the other artists. Check out our Connect Guide to learn more about everything youbloomConnect can do for artists.
Finally, you want your channel to be more than a glorified playlist; that’s what Spotify is for. YouTube is the perfect platform to show your followers the minds behind the music and to establish a personal connection with subscribers. Feeling a relationship with a YouTuber promises a much higher return rate of loyal viewers between uploads. This can’t be done with a music video alone. Create band interviews, behind-the-scenes gig vlogs, or an informational video. And don’t forget to end each video with some specific call out to your viewers: “Leave a comment about your favorite part of that gig, what band we should collaborate with next,” etc.
If you’re looking for a simpler way to join these networks, check out youbloom Connect and/ or sign up here: https://www.youbloom.com/artist-apply/ where you can get partnered to perform with other local artists, build a steady fan-base, and even get your band on the road.