According to Nathan Walker of Riot Act Media, the concept of music PR has not changed significantly since the dawn of pop music six decades ago. Musicians are still trying to push their songs to more listeners and media outlets relentless on selling ads. What has changed over the decade is the medium of achieving these things.
The general music promotion sector has also changed significantly and music PR is only a fraction of the big picture. In this guide, we will let you in on some of the things you need to know about modem music public relations.
The Music Public Relations Landscape Today
Walker said that there has been an evolution in the tools publicists use. The tools have evolved with the advent of technology. However, the approach is what has remained unchanged.
“The goal of a publicist is basically to connect journalists with fascinating stories on musicians. We are working to help artists get press in ways that will boost their career but also provide more stories for journalists that sell adverts on websites and magazines.”
Walker further stated:
“As a publicist, you are talking to the press regarding music projects. The approach to doing that is different from six decades ago. But what remains constant is that you are just searching for good music as well as the people that will like it and have something to say about it. “
Outlets and Journalists Covering Music Are Very Few
Walker said that there are fewer journalists and outlets covering music at the moment. Between 2000 and 2010, there was a major spike in indie music blogs. Many of them have come and gone, clearing the way for mainstream media outlets to take over the industry. He said that independent publications cannot cope and remain relevant like their corporate rivalries because they are surviving on passion, not profit.
They only share stories and music from genres they like, and this is not enough to give them the money they need to keep the fire burning. Independent outlets also lack the relationships that corporate groups have.
Creating a Loyal Fanbase Is Tough
Walker said that when smaller and niche-oriented websites or outlets shut down, you will lose the ability to develop a backstory and create a fanbase for a musician. You will now compete with musicians with tons of followers and huge marketing funds. There are many compelling reasons for publications to cover these big musicians because they will help them to sell adverts.
Walker does not have anything against bigger publications. He is just accepting the fact that they lack the bandwidth they had about a decade ago to dedicate coverage to niche and indie musicians.
“There is no much benefit to being the first to break a musician today. Some time ago, there were a couple of publications for people to read and learn about new albums. Today, musicians now release their songs themselves. You do not need to read any publication to know about their new songs – you can do that on Instagram and Spotify.”
This also provides the opportunity for artists to get creative in the way they promote themselves. However, if you are a niche or new artist, you will have a hard time building an audience, as it requires perseverance and patience.
Interesting related article: “What is PR?”