For starters, it shows that you are serious about your music and you are not only a musician but a brand, and a business. It’s much more efficient than saying, “hit me up on Instagram at @Rapp_Floz_3649” or whatever. You’re not going to truly grow your audience that way.
Over the years, I have managed and mentored several artists. I have studied Music Business to my Senior year at Berklee College of Music. Over and over the importance of an artist website has been reiterated time after time. I have heard the same excuses time after time; “it’s not in the budget, it’s not something that’s important when I have all my followers on social media, it’s too much trouble to run” and the list goes on and on. Well, I’m here to tell you IT IS NOT SOMETHING TO PUT OFF. It should be an essential part of your plan to releasing your music and staying in touch with your audience.
I have seen several artists, business projects, YouTuber’s, etc. that have gained several thousands of followers–even hundreds of thousands of followers that have LOST their social media channel. You don’t truly own your Facebook or YouTube page. This is especially for YouTubers because I know one who lost his channel with nearly 60k subscribers and nearly freaked out. He eventually got it back, but the point is, you don’t own it. It’s terrible, but it happens, and all that hard work is lost. Followers; gone. This could easily be avoided by setting up a website and learning to maintain it. When you have a website, social media is merely a tool to direct traffic to your site. The website IS YOUR POINT OF SALE. It’s a more personalized and intimate tool for SELLING YOUR PRODUCT. If you think of your website as your home, well social media is somewhat like the landscaping to your home.
Also, once you’ve established your website, you can methodically design a way for you true fans to follow you on every platform rather than making the occasional post of Facebook to follow you on Instagram and Twitter and then tweeting to listen to you on Spotify. Work smarter, not harder; build a website!
It is an essential part of building your brand. Search engines recognize websites. When you begin to solicit your music to industry personnel, they look at your website. It should be the first thing that pops up when a fan searches your name. Your main goal should be to get your audience to your website. But why? A good website contains EVERYTHING an artist has to offer, laid out in a simple and professional manner that is easy for the user to navigate. Your merchandise is on your website. Your tour dates are on your website. New announcements, special announcements, even discounted products should be on your website! Most importantly, your main email list is collected on YOUR WEBSITE!
You may say, “Emails? Why should I collect emails?” Well, emails lead to analytical data PLUS it allows you to identify your superfans and if you aren’t familiar with this term “superfans” are the type of fans that you want. Maintaining an email list and a regular monthly or bimonthly email keeps you in touch with your email subscribers. You can target and retarget your fans using email.
You may say, “this is too much on the business side of things, I just like to write music.” Well I have news for you, being an artist, these days is also being a businessman/woman. You must create a way to see how your fans are responding to your music. A website is the absolute best way to do this.
Why a Website Is the Best EPK
Booking agents, label reps, and many others in the music industry do not particularly like having to download files to their computer. They don’t have much space on their tiny computers to begin with. I’ve seen a lot of artists who strongly feel that a PDF file is much more effective. In most case, I must disagree. With a website, you can create a page, (example https://jamcitystudios.net/press-kit) and have everything a booking agent would need on that page. This way, the agent can download exactly what they need, like your stage plot, logo and perhaps a promotional flyer. You could have specific instructions of how to use your logo or which song to promote helping your branding efforts. Jam City Studios offers a service to help you with your press kit creation. You can check out these services here: PROJECT MANAGEMENT.
“But Websites Are Too Complicated to Build”
While this may be true for several platforms, we here at Jam City Studios have found the perfect solution for an artists’ website; Bandzoogle. Bandzoogle is hands down the easiest way for a musician to maintain the perfect website. I have personally put it up against Wix, Squarespace, and I even once ran a complicated Wordpress site that required constant plugin updates. Bandzoogle is a grassroots company that offers what would cost thousands for a fraction of the price. They have truly simplified the process, making it the perfect platform to build a truly stunning website that is safe and secure for your brand. As of January 2020, Jam City Studios affiliated with Bandzoogle, which is good news for you! If you sign up using the code “jamcity” you will receive a 15% discount off your first year. For the mere price of $170, you can create a website that will give you a security certificate, unlimited pages, a stellar press kit, and a simple platform to work on. You can do everything that you could from any other hosting service and more. It is integrated with several musical services such as Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Bandsintown, YouTube, Facebook, and much more. Bandzoogle is also a growing company in the music industry.
FOR 15% OFF, BE SURE TO ENTER THE CODE: JAMCITY
About the Editor:
Chris Canada is a U.S. Army Veteran, Studio Owner, Live Sound Engineer, Music Industry Enthusiast. He studied Interdisciplinary Music Studies and Production at Berklee College of Music.