In the second part of our series, our label services and digital distribution team give their guide for digital record labels on how to promote a record in the week of the release itself. Organisation, promptness and thoroughness are key if you want to squeeze every drop of your available resources into pushing your release, so read on and find out how to ensure all bases are covered.
Changing your pre-order links on social media posts and track previews to buy links is best done as soon as the release goes on sale. Beatport links usually go live at around midday UK time on day of release, with other stores updating earlier. If your primary target in the week of release is Beatport, then it’s important to switch pre-order links for buy ones as Beatport don’t offer pre-order links. Either way, ensure that any existing posts about your tracks are pointing to your primary retailer. Don’t forget things like YouTube annotations, buy links in the SoundCloud metadata edit screen and any links in social media bios.
Website and blog posts + e-flyers
It’s best to make the most of interaction with label fans by communicating with them when a release is available to buy, so a co-ordinated and focused approach across your owned platforms is optimum. Hit up your database on your release date pushing them to retail, and make sure all your portals are updated. In the age of social media and having so many channels to worry about, websites often get forgotten – so make sure it’s on your checklist.
It’s recommended for the artist behind your release to create charts on key portals like Beatport and Resident Advisor to give it more visibility. For Beatport, it’s important to be aware that DJ charts must be published via a DJ’s profile page, and only tracks available for sale can be included, meaning publishing a chart in the week of release is the best course of action.
Uploading to social channels
We recommend uploading all releases on YouTube, being the second biggest search engine in the world. The key to a successful video upload is in the visual quality of your upload and the tagging. Make sure you add a full description on each track with links, so fans can click through to buy or like your fan page. Ensure that you tag all genres, contributors and associated acts. The more tags, the better.
Instagram is becoming more and more important to DJs and labels. Uploading a 15-second clip of your track may not get too far on its own, but if you include a variety of hashtags your post will see a far better reach. Use the free Tag O’ Matic app to find the best hashtags in your respective genre. You can also schedule your Instagram posts by using Lategramme.iIt’s really simple to use and allows for 20 uploads a month for free.
If you haven’t already uploaded preview clips of your tracks to SoundCloud or had them premiered with media partners, make sure you do on release day and include the buy link in the metadata section and at the top of the description. Don’t hide it ‘under the fold’ (i.e. where users have to click ‘Show more’ to see it). Make sure you add the tracks to any relevant groups on the platform too for extra reach, and if you placed the tracks with partners, repost them. You may also want to highlight the release in your Spotlight section on your profile. If you want to use external premieres, you can create a playlist of them and put the playlist in the Spotlight section.
It’s clear to see just from scrolling through your news feed that video has taken over Facebook. From a social media perspective we have noticed that artists, DJs, labels and the like are losing views on their YouTube because of this. We recommend using 1-2 minute snippets of video uploaded directly to Facebook with clear calls-to-action. You can then send fans wherever you like: YouTube/SoundCloud to hear more or Beatport to buy.
Facebook has also removed the functionality for SoundCloud links to generate an embedded media player on their platform, so try to be creative with your uploads. Try using pictures or video content of test pressings, the recording process or exclusive plays.
We’d also recommend boosting posts on Facebook with a little budget. It doesn’t have to cost a fortune if you target correctly. Make sure you aim your post at key demographics (which you can find in Facebook’s Insights), relevant artists and publications which may be suitable.
Sales Charts & Store Features
Don’t forget to check your key retailers’ sales charts once a day from release date onwards. You never know when one of your tracks might creep into them, and you’ll never find out unless you’re checking daily. Charting can give you additional firepower to promote your release with and you’ll want to try and capitalise on that momentum by trying to push the release as high up the chart as possible after its entered it. It’s best to check charts after about 1 PM (GMT) when they will have been updated.
Make sure you’re checking the featured release slots on these stores too. Again, stores generally won’t tell you that they’ve featured it, so you need to make the effort to keep tabs on it. And if it’s been featured, make sure you shout about it and thank the retailer for their support.
Searching the Twittersphere
Ensure contributors are sharing your release by providing them with pre-written Facebook / Twitter / Instagram posts. Include the buy link and all assets they may need. This way you can control what’s going out and keep track of it. Make sure you RT your key mentions – maybe not everyone, but acknowledge your fans with a #FF at the end of the week or favourite positive mentions of your release name.
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