How to Attract More Views Through Quality Videos, Photos, Cover Art, and Flyers
(9 minute read)
We get a lot of solid submissions here at Ohio Streets but I can’t tell you how many half-assed music videos, event flyers, cover designs, logos, and lookbooks we’ve seen already this year. I’m always seeing people complain about being overlooked while I’m on Twitter, but when I go visit their sites, they’re not even doing the basic things that attracts viewers. If you want people to pay attention to whatever you’re offering, then appearance plays a leading role in that.
Would you walk into a store with an ugly display window, visit a resort that has an outdated brochure or call the insurance company that had the horrible commercial on TV? Probably not. You must approach your music with a similar mindset. There are many levels to marketing yourself, products, and services but for this article I’ll focus on the issues that we see most often at Ohio Streets, music promo.
When done right, visuals can help you attract your targeted audience, standout from the competition, and create a platform for bigger and better projects down the line. It’s nearly impossible to create a strong community of supporters without creating a solid amount of good, branded content to go along with what you’re trying to get people to pay attention to. Lets face it, how can you truly expect people to take you seriously when you don’t even put serious effort into every aspect of your craft. Music is a creative outlet and the creativity shouldn’t stop once the music has been made, it continues throughout every detail of your projects, shows, products, and so on.
A lot of artists probably understand this already, but for those new artists that do not I hope that I can put it into perspective for you.
Artists don’t create music videos just to be able to say that they have one, you should always approach them with a true purpose. Consider this, when you listen to a new song on your SoundCloud and you don’t like what you’re hearing, chances are you’ll hit skip before the chorus even comes in. But if you’re watching a great music video for that same song on YouTube, you’ll more than likely sit through the entire song just to see how the video unfolds. By the time the credits start rolling in and the beat fades out, a standout line or catchy chorus may be stuck in your head and you’re coming back for more songs from the artist.
A standout music video won’t just keep people listening to your songs for a longer time. A great visual can help develop your personal brand. What do you want to be known for, what do you want people to think of when they hear your name? Maybe it’s your lifestyle, sense of fashion or your personality? Being able to put a face to an artist’s name does something special for fans, it allows them to connect and relate with who you are on a deeper level, and that’s how you gain true supporters.
Remember how Bobby Shmurda’s “Hot Nigga” got big? A short clip from the music video of him dancing resurfaced on Vine and people began to like who he was beyond his music. His image was relatable, reminding you of the silly girl or guy in your clique that always has a joke to crack on everyone. His dance moves spread like wild fire and immediately after so did the full song, which now has nearly 37 million views on YouTube! Videos have the ability to create an image of you that songs can’t.
This doesn’t mean that you should create a gimmick to gain 15 seconds of fame, this is your career and you want it to last. The only way that you can truly last is if you figure out a way to be yourself. So don’t be afraid to show off who you are, whether you’re silly and goofy or out of the box and misunderstood, it’s who you are and there are people out there who will relate to that and enjoy it. Your music videos should give your listeners a better understanding of who you are and the story that is being told.
COVER ART and EVENT FLYERS
Due to the Internet, most of our attention spans are shrinking by the day. We easily come across hundreds of photos, videos, and links each day that are promoting something. Thankfully, our “bullshit detectors” are strong enough to ignore most of them; otherwise we’d spend all day clicking each one to find out what’s good or bad content. It really becomes necessary to “judge books by their covers” while we’re surfing the Web.
When you’re releasing an image to push your next song, product, album, or live show, you need to keep this in mind. Whatever image you’re using must grab someone’s attention immediately, that is if you want to stand any chance at gaining new viewers. You should aim to use an image that’s strong enough to make people stop in their tracks and click on it to find out more about it.
GOT A SMALL BUDGET FOR VISUALS?
The saying “you get what you pay for” definitely stands true in the music industry. But this doesn’t mean that you can’t find decent videographers, photographers, and designers who do low budget work. Of course you have to offer people something for their services, but that something doesn’t always have to be cash, think outside of the box.
Maybe you have a large following and exposing the designer, photographer, or videographer’s work to your audience will compensate for some of the cost. They may look at it like promotion. Or if you don’t have a large enough following, maybe you have a skill that you can offer them in exchange for their work. There’s always something that you can work out with upcoming artists, but if you have the money to work with the best then please do. Don’t just use them for their work either though, they’ll see through your bullshit. You should truly build long-lasting relationships with people because one hand washes the other.
If you don’t know any up and coming visual artists willing to lend a hand then maybe look to a close friend who has basic knowledge of the area and can help you or even teach you a thing or two. Independent artists must know how to do more than make music in this day and age anyways. Get on YouTube, watch some tutorials, and study simple and straightforward work that you like from others. Don’t be lazy, put in however many hours it takes to see your vision through to the end.
- Approach music videos with a purpose
- Make people listen longer
- Establish your image
- Gain peoples attention immediately with promo
- There’s always a way to make low budgets stretch
Later this week we will be sharing a list of 20 visual artists that you should probably work with this year!