January 25, 2021 Tami Nealy

How Influencer Marketing Has Changed the Music Industry

The Music Industry Thrives with Influencer Marketing

The 2021 Grammys were originally scheduled for this Sunday (they’ve been moved to March) and it feels like a good time to take a look at the revolution facing the music industry. Long gone are the days seen in the film “High Fidelity.” Record stores in shopping malls have been replaced with Apple Music and Spotify. Music videos long found on MTV or BET are now premiering on YouTube. Technology has changed the music industry and influencer marketing is ready to help turn up the volume.

When a brand engages social media influencers to create high-quality content, the goals can be to drive awareness, inspire social conversations and ultimately drive sales. And the music industry is more than record labels and artists. It’s instruments and equipment too. 

Influencer Marketing: Learn to Play

Not all music brands are created equal. It takes instruments, recording equipment, microphones, speakers, headphones and even batteries to bring music to life. Many instrument brands have launched successful influencer marketing campaigns by leaning in to aspiring or up-and-coming artists who use their brand.

As an artist looks to establish a brand for him/herself, partnering with a piano, drum, guitar, or in Lizzo’s case, a flute brand can help that brand reach larger audiences. The artist can share their multi-step journey as they progress through their education with their instrument. They can document their process on Instagram Stories, their YouTube channel or even on TikTok. Throughout their process, they can reference their affinity for the brand they are playing. And they can even share a promotional code or discount offer to purchase if the brand’s primary goal is to drive sales.

influencers big and small can make a difference in the music industry

Photo: Kelsey Cowley Photography

Influencer Marketing: Debut Your Sound

In 2019, Lanco, a Nashville-based Country Music band, leveraged social media influencers to promote their new single, “Rival”. Engaging more than sixty lifestyle influencers who had previously posted about their love of country music, they created more than 147 posts weaving in their love of the new song into their everyday life. From a tailgate anthem to listening while doing everyday tasks, influencers shared their passion for the song with their audiences. Audience engagement with this influencer content was overwhelmingly positive and beat engagement expectations by more than two-thousand percent! 

Music can also break through on newer apps like TikTok. One of the more popular songs of 2020 was Roses (Imanbek Remix) with more than one billion streams on Spotify and more than 125 million views on YouTube. The song has also been widely popular on TikTok with more than 2.9 million user-created videos featuring the hit. The integration on TikTok sparked the remix to become more popular than the original.

Influencer Marketing: Live Engagements

Not only has the music industry changed as a result of technology, it’s also had to take on a new form in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Artists are no longer performing in arenas with sold-out audiences but instead looking to create live, streaming events on social media platforms.

Many DJ’s have turned to Instagram Live to bring live events to their followers. In response, several DJ’s have partnered with various community activism groups to share positive and uplifting messages to those who follow them.

Artists can partner with influencers in a variety of ways to not only help drive downloads but to sell artist merchandise as well. Artists like Selena Gomez, Rihanna and Beyonce have all used their Instagram bio to link out to merchandise shops for their fans to purchase their must-have item. And Beyonce has used her influence to promote her Ivy Park brand through a series of A-list celebrities.

A December 2020 story in Rolling Stone addressed how social media, not streaming, will be the future of the music industry. From licensing songs on TikTok and Facebook to the new-look of live performances, social media influencers will be critical to driving engagement and attendance. 

Find Your Influence helps music brands to capitalize on innovative digital experiences that fuel musical expression and enjoyment. If you’re considering influencers to showcase your brand, drop us a note today.