How to Use Social Media & File-Sharing to Your Musical Advantage

Social media has made a new kind of celebrity one-hit-wonder: the viral video.

Through the power of sharing, tweeting, and snapping an overnight star is made. Unfortunately, they’ll only shine for about 15 seconds — forget 15 minutes! Social media changes too fast for that old adage.

Fortunately, the popularity of music and its makers doesn’t seem to suffer from this syndrome. People generally don’t change their mind about the musicians they like, and that creates a sustained interest in their lives and projects. Social media won’t kill the radio star — it gives them a broader audience more inclined to stay loyal through updates at the touch of an app.

Harness the power of social media:

  • Get seen
  • Get to work
  • Make it work

When used correctly, social media keeps your music visible to the public.

Get seen!

Success on social media relies upon constant updates with lush visual material and — especially important for artists — sound bytes. Staying visible on social media directly relates to building and keeping a fan base.

How do you stay visible? Create and optimize your profile and start posting on not just one — but several — social platforms. There are now many platforms aimed specifically at musicians, where you can upload or even create music to share and post. Make sure that you sign up for several different kinds of social accounts in order to reach the broadest audience.

It’s also a good idea to vary your content from platform to platform. If social media users know that you typically post the same content across the board, they’ll only follow you on one platform and call it a day.  Additionally, not all social platforms optimize the same types of posts. For example, Instagram is all about the visuals whereas Twitter is better suited to quick updates due to the character limit.  By varying your content according to the platform hosting it, you ensure that your audience engages more in your success and draw a bigger crowd to your fanbase.

Creative and consistent use of hashtags helps highlight your material for searching. Stay in the loop about which hashtags are trending and use them.  Don’t be afraid to create some of your own too!

Social media also become a way to increase the bargaining power for artists.  Because social platforms bring the artist to the listeners, much of the traditional corporate industry can be bypassed. (This is also due to the availability of music-creation apps.)

In another buck at tradition, the rise of social media also has meant the rise of smaller independent music labels. Because these labels are smaller, their relationship with an artist is more intimate, allowing them to keep their musical essence and giving the artist more control.

Use social media to find collaborators and producers – there’s a lot of people out there looking to be a part of your magic. Find them and get to work!

Get to work!

Keep up with the relentless pace of social media by storing all of your files for posts with Dropbox, where everything remains accessible and shareable regardless of where you are or with whom you are working. Projects remain collaborative and secure at the same time.

Where do you find someone to collaborate with amidst a sea of people on social media?

First, you’ve already done some research into hashtags — so use that to your advantage to find fellow artists, music lovers and producers. Follow the small indie labels and– here’s the most important part — ENGAGE with everyone. Comment, respond to comments, tag people — make sure that you don’t just post a pretty picture and leave it at that. Take the time to answer questions and always thank as many people who leave nice comments as possible.

And the haters? Be an adult about it. Either delete the nastiness or leave them alone and don’t engage them. While you’re at it, grow a thicker skin.

Not everyone is going to like you, or how you do things. Not 100% of the time. But sometimes, even people who don’t like your groove are going to make a point that hits home. Learn to accept constructive criticism and really try to grow with it. It won’t be comfortable, but meaningful growth rarely feels that way.

With social media, artists no longer need huge legions of fans or big corporate labels to make their dreams come true. You just need a few loyal fans and some backers, all of which you can find on social media.

Making your music is top priority, but marketing yourself with social media should be right underneath that!

Keep the success going… tips/tricks.

The power to promote your music is in your hands with social media and file sharing. Here are some tips and tricks to get you started!

Think of social media as self-marketing. It reaches millions of people every day, so take the time to use it correctly. Optimize your profile by keeping the information in your bio updated with a great photograph that’s sized correctly for social media. Leave a link in your bio to your latest project and be sure to show off merchandise if you sell it!

Check out a variety of platforms, and use each one as often as you can. Once a day or once every other day should be fine for most platforms– such as Facebook or Twitter– but Instagram’s algorithm can be difficult to crack. Check out the best times to post on each social media platform and do your best to take advantage of it.

Social media is a great extension of your branding strategy.  Pay attention to who uses social media and which users are your target audience.  Tailor your content to them, but keep it varied — especially try to avoid making the same exact post on all of your social accounts.

We’ve already mentioned that, but it bears repeating. Show back-stage or behind-the-scenes on your account, hold contests, and show yourself off in action — whether it be rehearsals, concerts or live streaming.

Social media allows your audience to connect directly with you, so keep them engaged by varying your content. Live streaming some of your performances – or rehearsals – is a great way to keep your audience’s attention and loyalty.

Do your homework when it comes to using social media correctly, because it does make a huge difference in the success of your music. Not only are social platforms generally easy to use, but they are also one of the most effective ways to reach your target audience.  Social media not only makes you discoverable — with proper use, it can also keep a fanbase loyal.

If you have any other tips and tricks for using social platforms to promote your music, let us know in the comments!


This is a sponsored post for Dropbox. All opinions are my own. Dropbox is not affiliated with nor endorses any other products or services mentioned.