For most independent musicians, large worldwide exposure is a difficult thing to achieve if you don’t have a lot of funds for advertising. That is why artists sign contracts with large record labels. They have the funds to buy advertising on various avenues like radio, television, and the internet.
Now back in the day, getting worldwide exposure was nearly impossible without these large advertising campaigns. There was no internet, so the only way to communicate with people long distance was by phone or mail. Now with the birth of the internet, and the equally important social media, sharing your music with people all over the world has never been easier.
It is now possible to get massive worldwide exposure without paying a cent in advertising! That in itself is pretty damn incredible. All you need is a form of media (video, song, pic, etc.), a social media site to share your content, and you are good to go!
Now don’t let me make it sound like it is incredible easy to get something to go viral. You need to create something that is going to blow people’s minds. It could be something that shows your musical talent, or just something that is extremely funny. Whatever it is, it has to be a piece of content that is good enough to make people want to share it with their friends and the rest of the world.
If you create something that really catches peoples attention, you have the potential to get a flood of people wanting to talk to you in a short amount of time. You could get instant requests for interviews from news reporters, TV hosts, radio stations, news papers and popular news websites.
To show you just how powerful a viral piece of content can be, here are some great examples:
Example 1: Walk Off The Earth Cover Gotye
As a reader of my posts, I’m sure it is safe to say that you are a musician and a music lover. Chances are that you have already seen this. That just shows you how viral this video went. If it wasn’t for this video, I am not sure that Walk Off The Earth would have millions of fans all over the world like they do today.
This video catches people’s attention because they are showing off something that takes great talent. Five people playing one guitar is also something that no one had seen before, anywhere. There is also one other important factor that led to this video geting the massive exposure it got. Can you guess what it is?
TIMING! That is right. Not only did they catch your attention with their talent, they also covered a song that was blowing up at the very time that they created the video. That fact alone made people share like crazy. They were also playing a song that most of the people who shared already heard and loved. Pretty damn smart if you ask me!
That one video alone got the TV exposure, and even gigs all over the world. Now when they release a new video on Youtube, it is guaranteed to get millions of views.
Just look at their number of subscribers and views for that single video as of the day I wrote this:
Example 2: OK GO’s Music Videos:
I think it is safe to say that OK GO have some of my all time favorite music videos posted to YouTube. A ton of thought goes into the making of their videos. I bet they meet up and spend hours brainstorming ideas to make a video as good as they can get it. Then they spend even more time taping the thing to make sure that every thing is perfect.
That may seem like a lot of time, but don’t you think it is worth it? These videos get them more music sales than anything else. That is one thing that I didn’t mention. It may be obvious to some, but you need to be posting links in your video description that direct people to a place to buy your song or video. A lot of artists send their visitors to their iTunes page, but you can send them to other digital distribution sites or even your own website.
Example 3: Jordan Axani’s Post On Reddit
Just a week before posting this article, Jordan Axani made a post on reddit, offering a free trip around the world for any woman named Elizabeth Gallagher, with a Canadian passport. Basically, him and his girlfriend got a great deal on a number of flights for a trip around the world. Unfortunately, the relationship has ended, and there is a free ticket up for grabs. Why am I telling you this if it has nothing to do with music?
First off, Jordan was a guitar player in my first ever band. Seeing someone I know made me pay a lot of attention to the media coverage. So I saw first hand how quickly things escalated. Second, I am showing you this because of how much media coverage it got. All he did was post a simple question on reddit, and a day later the story was being covered on radio stations, television shows, and popular blogs all over the world. I do feel bad though because it seemed like the crazy amounts of calls and emails became a bit overwhelming for him. Hopefully, things have settled down!
Just imagine what exposure like this could do for your album, ticket and merch sales. Insane!
There are a few examples of pieces of content that went viral, and fast! If I somebody ever asked me “What is the quickest way to get world wide exposure?”, I wouldn’t hesitate to say “Create something that goes viral.” If you want strangers to do the promoting for you, you are going to have to give the something they aren’t going to forget. A simple video of you or your band playing isn’t going to be enough. I’m not saying don’t make those videos, just don’t think that those videos alone are going to get you your millions of new fans. If you want massive exposure, I recommend taking the time to think of something that you can do, that would have the potential to go viral.
Do you have any ideas to help fellow musicians go viral? Do you have any other examples of musicians getting world wide exposure? Let me know in the comments section!