Bulding up your music career Part 5: The website

Before moving to other aspects, I would go deeper in details about the website you want to build. As you got a clear idea about what you want – see previous blog – it’s time to start doing it. First thing first, you need a domain name. This is important. I would not go for the free websites that you can have, but where the domain name starts with the name of the host/service. Why would you do advertise for them? By doing it, you send a signal that you have doubts about yourself, so why would somebody else believe in you?

When choosing the domain name, try to keep it as short as possible, and then try to get something that it’s easy to remember. Of course, your name is the first thing that comes to mind. If you’re a band, then the band’s name. Make sure it is available, and if it’s not, find some ways around so you can use it. 

There are a couple of places that can help you with your website, they can build it for you, they even provide marketing and PR services: check out www.musiciansdesign.comwww.hostbaby.comwww.ourgig.com and others. If you can’t afford to hire a designer or know yourself how to do it, this is a viable alternative. Usually most musician’s websites have a poor design, as they do not invest (time or money) too much on it. Don’t do that mistake! Have a website that captures the attention of the ones that are checking it! When somebody gets into your website, you need to keep them in it for a while, it is your chance to present yourself, to establish a connection, to place a call to action and do a sale. They expect to be dazzled, and you have to deliver!

The visitor experience has to be a rich one, you want him to come back and check it out again. Do not give an excuse to visitors to back out from the website; make sure the website has valuable content! Before they listen to your music, they want to know your story, and you have to conquer them with words! The Bio/About has to be written well, be very personal, unique, and memorable, so the reader can relate easy! Avoid vague description, and be very specific.

Try to find the right balance between elements with high visual impact- like photos, colors, backgrounds- and content. Have a News page, and make sure it’s updated every week. Try to also offer a blog, there are many issues people are interested in, and the fact that you’re a musician gives them the sense that your opinion is valuable, or, at least, they want to know it because they are following you. 

In your blog you can keep a photo diary, post behind-the-scene-photos, fan’s photos, press photos,  embed original videos; you can give fans stories about yourself, with the ups and downs, we all love gossip, don’t be shy to use it, answer you fan questions – make sure you mention their name!  When answering your fan’s questions, place first a call to action, let them know that you are going to do it, and you expect their questions, this way they will go again and again to your website.

You can also offer reviews about the instruments you’re using in your blog, even reviews about the places you visited when you were on tour, like hotels, restaurants, and stories about the people you met. Post some interviews or summary of discussions you have with other musicians or people from the music industry!

The two very important things that you have to have it in your website are the call to action and a web store! An example of call to action is when you ask your fans to come and meet you when you have a gig (and make sure you post in News or Blog some pictures with you meeting fans afterwards). Engage the visitors, post a poll, ask them questions, post their responses, ask them to get involved in actions like fundraisings or teams, and ask for feedback!

Pay attention to the web store, which is so easy to set it up today! If everything goes right, visitors want to buy a song or an album or a t-shirt, give them that opportunity right from the website, while you have their attention! Once they’re gone, they will focus on something else.

Maintain steady your website, upgrade it every week, be present, be persistent and be yourself!

Stay tuned,

Flo Fandango

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