Many bands have come to understand the importance of SEO to their music and careers. SEO, (Search Engine Optimization), is that all-important and, often, all-too-evasive element that helps drive traffic to your website or social media via search. If it has never occurred to you that SEO applies to bands just as much as it does to businesses, then read on!
The fact is, your band is a brand. You are an entrepreneur. It doesn’t matter if your focus is to get more paid gigs or drive a larger audience to a live event or to the purchase of a CD. As an artist, you are very much a business person and thorough knowledge of good SEO practices should be your best friend.
The face of SEO is constantly changing. Much is this is due to the ever-evolving algorithms of Google. In the past there has been great emphasis on beating the system. But the system grew smarter. The new search engines are able to read your mind. Not really. But they can mimic signals that human beings consider to be accurate and reliable. It can now figure out what information is beneficial to humans and what information has been carefully crafted specifically for Google’s bots.
Increasingly, most people rely more on word of mouth from friends than advertising to make purchasing decisions. Google’s system now can read those subtle differences in content. It is said that Millennials are able to completely block online advertising out of their heads. They don’t see or hear it. Yet, this generation is also one of the strongest at sharing what they love with their friends – Word of Mouth. What might this mean for you? Ask yourself, “is it more effective to bombard the internet with: COME TO OUR NEXT SHOW AT XYZ VENUE, or, spend the time developing real relationships with brand ambassadors who will share your next event with their tribe?
Is it more effective to post a mix of quality information and original posts than to only fill your wall with: OUR NEXT GIG IS 9PM SUNDAY AT ABC VENUE. You know you’ve seen the folks that use social media as a personal billboard. It gets old. FAST. Remember that the word social implies relationship. It takes time and much effort to build online relationships but the value is beyond measure. While building quality relationships with your audience gives any band value, in today’s new world of SEO, it adds a search bonus because Google and other algorithms are watching how many people are talking about YOU. Everyone wants to hang out with the popular kids. Even Google.
Here’s the take-away. The lines of SEO have blurred. Search, social and P.R. are in bed together. The key is to create great cross-channel content, use smart tags and spend plenty of time creating friendships that are not based upon shoving your information down others throats. This is great news because it means you can be creative, have fun and engage your audience in a natural way and not be so concerned about whether you’ve used every key word you came up with. I’m not saying the use of keywords isn’t important. I am saying that those vital keywords often come up naturally as your write. So be real. Making friends with SEO means creating great posts, video and tweets. But it also means you get to be yourself. Bands are now mini-marketing firms. Bands are also filled with creative individuals. So use that to your benefit.
Why are you not using video as a fun and effective tool to connect to people? Make, (short), and entertaining video invitations to your next gig. Remember to fill in all the data YouTube allows in the information section. Give the important details like time and place but also tell a story about the event. Is it the drummers birthday? Let the crowd know. Nothing pertinent come to mind? CREATE a story line around the show. Make up a fairy tale. Capture your audience with your creativity. Make sure to include the URL’s, (www.myband.com or http://www.facebook.com), in the description. Cross channel promotion is important to Google’s creepy crawlies. Share your video on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr, your website and blog. But be cool about it. Don’t blast it out there. Draw people to it by being engaging and unique. In today’s fast-paced internet, you have to be ever-present. You have to focused on updating and reaching out. Most importantly, you have to be real. Because the great and powerful OZ is watching.