The world of paid advertising is a vast place with so much information (and money investment) that musicians simply ignore it. I'm sure you've seen or heard of paid ads on social sites, search engines, and in the form of banners or video advertisements.
There are always small businesses or big brands putting together campaigns and gaining leads, sales, subscribers, and other valuable actions for their business through these types of ads.
Why can't you, as a music artist, do the same?
The answer is that you can make the same types of advertisements for yourself to get your brand and your music out there as a creator.
]You will find that you can even gain some success with a limited budget where you don't need to spend hundreds or thousands a day to gain new fans!
Many ads that you see online fall under the category of direct response marketing, which makes it more successful than passive advertising.
Direct response marketing is a type of advertising that is most successful for small businesses and brands to advertise their product or service.
In a direct response advertisement, you are paying to promote your message directly to a person in your target audience with the intent of them completing an action.
Actions for a music ad can include CD sales, free downloads, and mailing list sign-ups. For this type of paid advertising online, there are three main forms: PPC, CPM, and CPA.
PPC - also known as pay-per-click, is a form of advertising where you pay for each click that your advertisement receives.
For example, you create an advertisement on Google for your latest song that you want 100 people to see.
Google is charging you 10 cents for every person that clicks your ad. You will then owe 10 cents to the ad company that ran your ad (Google).
CPM - also known as Cost per Mille (Mille means 1000 in Latin), CPM is a form of advertising where you pay for every 1000 impressions or views that your advertisement receives.
For example, you create an ad on Facebook to promote your latest album. Facebook allows you to put your post on a timeline of 1000 people, charging you a flat rate of $10 for your ad to run.
CPA - (Cost Per Action) ads will cost you money only when a person completes a desired action, like a sale or mailing list sign-up.
Example: A music website allows you to place a banner advertisement on the home page promoting your upcoming tour.
When a user buys a $40 ticket through that music site, you will pay $15 to the site owner for promoting your tour successfully.
The goal with direct response marketing is for you to get a return on the amount that was spent on advertising. In the CPA example above, the artist will pay $15 to the music site but profit $25 from the advertisement.
In a successful CPM scenario, you will spend $10 to get your music ad in front of 1000 people, 50 of those people will check you out, and five will buy your album, netting you around $50 in total sales and $40 in profit.
In a successful PPC scenario, you will pay 10 cents for 100 people to listen to your music, and ten people will buy your album ($100 in sales).
Popular social media sites like Instagram, Facebook, and Youtube have ad platforms that allow you to get your music to a larger audience.
With social media ads, you can target audiences by interests, groups, who they’ve liked or followed, and keywords they have used in posts.
The process goes like this: you design a post that advertises your music, you set the audience that you would like to see your message, then you pay for each time someone interacts with or sees your ad post.
Social media ads work great for creating a buzz and attracting potential fans based on topics they are already interested in.
Since most people browsing social media aren’t in the mood to be sold to directly, it’s best to include giveaways and freebies in social media ads to get the best results.
Search engine ads are the sponsored, relevant ads that you see when you search for something on Google or Bing. These types of ads usually perform great, because the intended audience is specifically looking for what you are selling.
For example, you are an artist who has a new EDM hit song. You decide to pay Google to promote your new song under the search term “EDM songs”.
A random kid in New Jersey looking for music decides to type into Google “EDM songs” and clicks your link to hear your songs.
Assuming your music is good, this kid automatically becomes your new fan because you are exactly what he was looking for.
Highly targeted advertising like this usually costs more and is very competitive. Search ads usually run using PPC (Pay per click), averaging 20-70 cents per click.
For every popular search term or phrase in the world, there are literally hundreds of brands and companies fighting and outbidding each other for an ad spot on one of the first page results.
Why are they fighting to pay? Because the top spot earner is usually spending thousands of dollars a day, and they are probably making tens of thousands in profit!
Banner and multimedia advertisements that you find on popular websites fall under the category of display advertising.
Display ads are similar to search ads, but the advertiser finds their target audience with website topics instead of using search terms.
As a musician, you would want to put your banner ad on a relevant site like Pitchfork or Stereogum, where people are visiting to discover new music already.
Banner ads usually run for much cheaper than search ads, but rely very heavily on your ability to stand out, as most banner ads go unnoticed.
When was the last time you clicked on a banner advertisement you saw while browsing a website (and not by accident)?
In today’s digital age, most people have become subconsciously blind or dismissive of advertisements like these, so it’s important to design an ad that will break through browser blindness.
As you can see, there are so many possibilities when it comes to promoting your music when you have a bit of a budget for your brand.
If you pair these types of marketing techniques with your song releases, you could be looking at a huge growth in your fanbase and sales after a few successful campaigns.
If you are interested in starting your online advertising journey, you don't have to do it all alone. You can start yourself, or hire an ad manager from a site like Hopps to help you along the process to maximize your results with your ad campaigns.
As a session singer, writer, and producer that has worked with over 200 clients to provide high-quality jingles, singles, and features, Yona spends her time creating and marketing new music and helpful resources for creators. Her recent collaborations include work with PBS Sound Field, Tribe of Noise, and the National Black Chamber of Commerce. Check out Yona’s latest releases on her Spotify, her Youtube and share if you like it!
If you are in need of singer, songwriter or song producer services, see what Yona Marie can offer you on her services page. As an Amazon Associate, Yona Marie earns from qualifying purchases. Amazon and other affiliate products are recommended to genuinely help readers and keep this site up and running as well.