Featured image reads How to Promote Your Music With No Money in 2024

If you want to promote your music with no money in 2024, you’ve come to the right place. There are numerous reasons why spending as little or no money at all is beneficial to a lot of people. Some people simply don’t have the money. Others just don’t want to spend money when there is little chance of making it back quickly. If this is you, you’re like most musicians. In fact, 80% of artists never generate more than 50 monthly listeners in their musical careers. Therefore, it makes sense to spend as little as possible and if that means for free, it’s all well and good.

Key Takeaways if You Want to Promote Your Music With No Money

By the time you have finished reading this post, you will…

  • …know all the strategies for promoting your music without spending any money
  • …be able to generate more streams of your music on any platform you choose
  • …be able to form a social media plan going forwards so that you can promote your music with no money

Please note that there are affiliate banners later in this post. If you click on them and make a purchase, I will also make a small commission. This is only a little commission, but it really helps me to provide for my wife and son. Therefore, I would like to say a BIG THANK YOU in advance. Your support makes all of my work with Krannaken.com and the Krannaken TV YouTube Channel all worth my time. So, thanks again. I appreciate you all.

Use Social Media to Promote Your Music With No Money

Create Engaging Content

Posting regular content on platforms such as Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, and Facebook can be more effective than posting an ad. This is because more people who follow your profile, will also become more familiar with your content. Therefore, they will interact more with it as they become more familiar with you and your music. So, keep posting. It is a known fact that it takes around six or seven impressions of your content for someone to actually take action, listen to your music, book gig tickets and purchase your merch. So, keep pumping content into your profiles and you will see more results.

As a musician, you should use platforms where people can listen to your music and audio content. This includes creating microcontent on platforms such as Instagram, TikTok and YouTube. However, as time goes by and more and more platforms come to a realisation that this type of content is actually more popular, you will find more platforms jumping on the bandwagon. My advice here is to find out from Spotify for Artists who your fans are, where they live, what age group they represent and what gender they are. For instance, I know from our analytics data that Krannaken are more popular with younger men, between the ages of 18 and 44 and who live in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Collaborate with Other Artists

Collaborations can make or break your music career. Therefore, it is vital that you collaborate with other musicians and media professionals. As I have stated in various other posts, there is more than just one good reason for collaborating. This arrangement means you can work to your strengths and let others work to theirs. It also means that you can tap into a much bigger audience and pique the interest of new fans who will buy your merch, attend your shows and listen to your music.

Hashtags

Hashtags serve more than one purpose. Initially and most understood, they aid discoverability. If a post has a hashtag such as #asot, it will be found by Armin Van Buuren fans. Using a hashtag that is associated with your music means that fans who are interested in that music genre will also take interest in your music.

Hashtags also make it easier for a social media platform to categorize your music. Therefore, they can show your content to other fans of that music genre. A social media platform only wants to keep people experiencing and engaging with your content as that will keep people on the platform for longer. If you can keep people on a platform for a longer time period, it also means that the platform can show more adverts to your potential fans. Therefore, the platform will make more money as a result.

Keeping up-to-date with trends helps you to write more popular music. I once made a video about a man in America who was receiving physical abuse from police because of his colour. I made the video on a Friday. On the Monday after that, I checked the stats and found that there were no fewer than 4,000 hits. I thought, Wow! I really have to make more videos like this one. Everyone should be making videos to coincide with trends of all kinds.

For instance, this month is gay month in America. While some people are for it, there are still quite a lot of people who are against it. They believe we should have Christian month too and why not? Whichever side of the fence you stand, you should incorporate it into your music. Personally, I’m a Christian and believe that the homosexual act is a sin. It’s not wrong to “be” gay, but it is wrong to “do” gay. I believe that all people are loved by God – whether they are gay or not. I also believe that Christianity is a relationship, not a religion. Let’s get back to the subject of the post, but suffice to say that every fibre of my being longs to be with the Lord.

Promote Your Music With No Money on Streaming Platforms

Spotify Playlists

Equally personal to a person’s faith is their music tastes. Whatever music you listen to or make, you will find many playlists on Spotify for that genre. Furthermore, many people will only listen to Spotify playlists. I probably listen to playlists for around 95% of my listening habits. Therefore, Spotify has a fantastic grasp of the kind of music that I enjoy.

As an artist, it just makes sense to get on every playlist you can. It is more important to your success that you can get on Spotify generated playlist than listener generated playlists. I know I listen to more Spotify playlists and this is true for most artists and most fans.

SoundCloud

SoundCloud is frequented more by artists than anyone else. Therefore, it’s ideal for finding a collaborative partner. If you want to collab with anyone on SoundCloud, you just need to message them. Many people don’t answer, but there are people who will message you back. As this is a free way to communicate for collaborative purposes, it is worth the time and effort you can put into it.

SoundCloud used to have a feature where you could find new uploads in your genre in the last hour. This was a fantastic service that would help you to find the little producer and not just those who had the most streams. For me, finding new uploads was the unique selling point for SoundCloud. That appears to have been cancelled for now. Therefore, you will only be able to find artists who have the most streams. This is a bad move on the part of SoundCloud in my view.

YouTube

YouTube has to be my favourite platform for many things. I am happy to be a premium viewer of YouTube videos because it provides practically all of my video consumption. I haven’t properly watched terrestrial TV for a long time. The BBC, ITV and channels 4 and 5 don’t stand a chance against YouTube. I always feel a bit cheated by big business when I am charged to have a TV in my house. However, my son watches it and it keeps him occupied. Therefore, I am happy for him to keep it.

In my view, TV companies should make money from people who actually watch their programs. I’d be happier for the BBC to adopt the advertising model than to keep paying for something that I don’t use. After all, there is more than just the TV license that can bring in funds for the BBC. There are advertising opportunities that they should be making more of. I also believe the BBC should be make more money from merchandising and selling products related to their subjects. For instance, why not make and sell more Dr Who merch? There is a lot of money in this kind of thing.

I also believe that all musicians should have their own YouTube channel. It’s free – if you want. You don’t have to pay anything for a YouTube channel. I only pay because I believe that it is worth the money I spend on it. You can also attract many people to subscribe to your YouTube channel – all without spending a cent on promotion.

Using Online Communities to Promote Your Music With No Money

Reddit

Reddit can be another superb way to promote your music with no money. You can share your music in relevant subreddits. These include groups such as r/Music, r/IndieMusic, or genre-specific communities.

It is essential that you also engage with the community by providing feedback to others and participating in discussions. This is particularly important because the more you engage with others, the more they will engage with you. Just as with Facebook, you must never drop a link and run. You want to be a valued member of the community. That means engaging with other people’s posts. You will always find that the most popular group members are always those who engage with the posts of other members.

Music Forums

Join forums like KVR Audio, Gearslutz, or local music forums.

Lots of music forums will require you to engage with other posts for a set number of times before you can post something yourself. This helps the community to be more mindful of each other and aids in building a healthy and happy community of likeminded individuals. Therefore, engage, engage, engage.

Promote Your Music With No Money Through Direct Engagement

Email Marketing

Build an email list by offering a free download of one of your tracks. Regularly update your subscribers with new releases and exclusive content.

Although it works best when you pay the $9 per month fee, Hypeddit can also be used for free when you promote just one song. However, you would probably have to delete your old Hypeddit squeeze page whenever you wanted to promote a new track. A premium account will give you unlimited numbers of landing pages so that you can promote as many songs as you like.

Live Streams

All artists should use platforms like Twitch, YouTube Live, and Instagram Live to perform and interact with their audience in real-time. As an artist, you should also factor in Stageit.com so that you can monetize every performance without even leaving your home.

Busking and Local Gigs

As well as live streaming your performances, you can also erform at local open mics, community events, and other free venues to gain exposure and build a local following. If you are confident enough, you should find a location such as a shopping centre where there is a lot of foot-fall. Perform there and see how many people throw money into your jar. If you are popular locally, you can make a full-time income from busking. It depends on how good you are and also how many people are experiencing your music.

Promote Your Music With No Money Through Content Creation

DIY Music Videos

It is easy to create a quick snapshot of your main hooks as well as full music videos of your songs. You can just add free video footage that you can find either online or self-filmed footage. The latter is particularly good because you can make it exactly how you like it. When you have the footage, you can put it all together with your audio in a software such as Canva. This can be effective as well as easy and can leave a distinctly positive impression on your views.

In order to promote your YouTube channel and assist in building your following, you need to encourage people to engage and subscribe. You can do this at any point in your video. However, it is most commonly advertised in the End Cards.

Lyric Videos and Visualizers

If you make music that includes lyrics, you can also make lyric videos or visualizers. There is a visualizer plugin on FL Studio if you use that. This can be used to create such a video and you have the ability to add video, inyeractive imagery and text that you can edit to read the name and title of your song. These can help keep your audience engaged on YouTube as well as on other video platforms.

Promote Your Music With No Money Through Networking

Attend Virtual Music Conferences

Participate in online music conferences, webinars, and workshops to learn and network with industry professionals. These were particularly popular under lockdown and the whole experience of living under lockdown has revolutionised the way many people live and work with both social and professional groups being conducted with software such as Zoom. This means that group members and employees don’t even have to leave their homes in order to work and socialise.

Join Musician Networks

Platforms like Bandcamp, ReverbNation, and local musician groups can help you connect with other artists and potential fans. This can introduce musicians to each other and result in opportunities such as collaborative projects. It does also have the potential for supporting opportunities. Therefore, you can join much better-known acts and support them in national as well as international tours.

Utilize Free Tools to Promote Your Music With No Money

Canva

I was involved with a band who asked me to create an inlay card for a CD they were promoting. I used Canva for this. Canva can be used for free. However, I believe that if you are going to use Canva, the premium version is much better. Therefore, I am a premium member of Canva and am very happy with it. I use Canva for all of my projects. That includes this blog, YouTube videos and video thumbnails as well as social media posts that all give my work a professional feel.

There are restrictions with Canva when you use the free version. You can’t just use any image, or video. You can’t do everything with the free version that you can with the premium version. Therefore, I recommend that you use the premium version where possible. Even though it’s not too expensive, it would probably be my only premium app if I could only have one free app to work with.

Free Alternatives to Distrokid

There are several free alternatives to Distrokid that I can recommend. However, having said they are free, they do charge 10% to 15% of all of the proceeds from your music. If you’re very small and have no real following, you are best to use one of these free services. I would only recommend that you switch to Distrokid when and if you become so big that you are making enough to make it financially worth your time.

GarageBand or Audacity

You can even use a free digital audio workstation such as GarageBand or Audacity to produce and edit your music. My own personal favourite DAW is FL Studio who will require you to buy the DAW once and give you free upgrades for life. Therefore, I have already paid for my DAW and I have one of the best and most use-friendly digital audio workstations with free upgrades for life. Whether you think that FL Studio is the best and most user-friendly is a matter of personal opinion. However, that is my opinion.

If you make rock music, I can recommend that you check out GarageBand as that is its main focus. FL Studio is more for electronic dance music. We make drum’n’base, techno and trance.

Leverage User-Generated Content to Promote Your Music With No Money

Challenges and Contests

Creating challenges or contests around your music can be an excellent way to create buzz around your music. You could provide your contest entrants with a number of loops or samples and require their inclusion in the music. This will help you to grow your image as people will know what is expected and how skilful your music is. Encourage your fans to participate and share their entries on social media. The sharing of their music will also enable your music to find fresh ears that may belong to new fans.

If you create a Facebook group for your contests or user-generated content, you can ask group members to share each other’s music on their social media profiles. This helps your music to become better known, but it also helps the people who have created the new music to be better known too. Therefore, it is a better known opportunity than you make think because it is a win-win and everyone is becoming better known as a result.

Fan Art and Covers

Encourage fans to create and share art or cover versions of your songs. Just as with the challenges and contests, you can also create a Facebook group for this. It would also be a good idea to ask group members to share each other’s work on this group too. This will enable your music to become better known and it is another win-win for everyone concerned too. You should also feature these on your social media to build a sense of community and engagement.

Promote Your Music With No Money Through Blogging and Podcasts

Music Blogs

Submit your music to music blogs and websites. Many indie music blogs are open to featuring new and emerging artists. On Krannaken.com, we are especially open to supporting electronic music artists as that is our most loved kind of music. Please email us if you are interested in a review on Krannaken.com.

There are many services such as SubmitHub that list opportunities for blog reviews.

Podcasts

Podcasting aggregators such as Liberated Syndication will send your podcast out to all of the top podcasting platforms. You will be able to get your podcast on platforms such as SoundCloud and Spotify as well as many others.

Your podcast can include anything that is audio. You can use it as a Q & A opportunity so that you can engage with individual fans with shoutouts. Alternatively, why not give the story of a song? How about your background? Do you think fans of your music would also be interested in your life experiences? Of course they would! Therefore, you need to ensure that you make the most of each and every opportunity to share your podcasts and your music with the people who matter to you – your fans.

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Promote Your Music With No Money By Networking in Real Life

Local Music Scene

Engage with your local music scene by attending shows, networking events, and music meetups.

You can also find shows and networking events on apps like Meetup or Eventbrite. Don’t forget to also check for local clubs and societies with your local public library. They will have a directory of local organisations who you can join to learn more about such opportunities.

Open Mics and Jam Sessions

In my College days, I would go to one particular public house on a Thursday evening. There was an Irish band who we became good friends with. If you’ve not been to a traditional Irish pub with traditional Irish music, I can highly recommend that you do. I don’t have an Irish bone in me. My dad was Scottish and mum was from London, but I always enjoyed the atmosphere at an Irish pub. There were a few such pubs in Birmingham, and I took every opportunity to go along and have a good time with the Irish people.

You can find other such opportunities that cover a multitude of genres either in your own geographic location or online.

Talking about such online opportunities reminds me of an online choir that my wife joined under lockdown. This kept confidence up and kept people interested in collaborating under lockdown. This was a part of the online revolution with musicians getting together at the time. It also reminds me of when I conducted a collaboration remotely. I worked with a drummer from America and a guitarist in Romania. They were both fantastic musicians and it was great to work with them. However, I also asked someone who didn’t know what the 12-bar blues was to sing a blues lyric. The guy had no idea what blues was – let alone how to sing it. Therefore, not everyone you work with will do a good job for you.

Using Consistent Branding to Promote Your Music With No Money

Cohesive Visual Identity

When you imagine your business, what colours do you see? If you were a supermarket, a car or an airline what would you be? I was asked this question a few weeks ago and here is my answer…

If I was a supermarket, I would want to be Tesco because they bill themselves as a company who care about their customers. A car would be a Nissan Micra because they are reliable and the airline would be British Airways because they cater for every corner of the planet. I would like to be thought of in black and white because that is the best and most transparent colour combination. This is the most contrasting colour combination.

Personal Story

Share your personal story and the stories behind your songs. Authenticity can resonate strongly with listeners. This exercise will build rapport with your audience as well as show you where you have come from and where you want to go to. Therefore, it is an excellent exercise for everyone concerned.

Your story may help you to build rapport because your potential fans may relate to your music. You never know what you may have in common. For instance, as a Tottenham Hotspur fan, other people who are Tottenham Hotspur fans may take an extra special attention because we support the same football team.

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Using Analytics and Feedback to Understand Best Ways to Promote Your Music With No Money

Track Performance

There are various different analytics tools available on platforms like Spotify for Artists, YouTube Studio, and Instagram Insights. I recommend that you take note of these platforms in particular because they are provided by the platform that you want to know about. Furthermore, I would advise you to take platforms like Google Analytics with a pinch of salt because they are often wildly inaccurate.

I recently had a chat with Alex Genadinik, my good friend who is in the top 1% of instructors on Udemy. I asked Alex which analytics platform he believed was the best. His answer was very interesting. Alex stated that no analytics platform was very good. I can believe in a platforms own analytics, but I would advise you to take all other platforms with a pinch of salt. This is a little disappointing because it means that there is nothing that will give me an accurate view of my own website.

Adjust Strategies

Regularly review your promotion strategies based on feedback and analytics. Adjust your approach to focus on what works best. For instance, I have found that sharing more YouTube shorts is an excellent idea because they provide me with a lot of views. When I use short videos on YouTube, I see a dramatic increase in views on YouTube analytics. The same can be said for other microcontent platforms – especially Instagram and TikTok.

By leveraging these strategies, you can effectively promote your music in 2024 without needing a substantial budget. The key is consistency, creativity, and authentic engagement with your audience.

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