So you’ve written that great song and you’ve had it properly recorded and mixed, what next? Promote your music!
Getting your songs to your target audience could be a daunting task, it’s time consuming and expensive. The PAYOLA factor doesn’t help either. So how do you promote your music in Nigeria when the budget is quite low and you have no one supporting you financially?
Here are 4 simple steps, pay attention.
1. USE SOCIAL MEDIA
We are well into the digital era where almost everything can be advertised and purchased online, your music shouldn’t be left out.
Instagram has become the “new television” and people (especially the youths) log in by the millions to view content. It would be a shame if your content isn’t there competing as well. You can make short video clips of yourself rapping or singing and upload it. You could also use Instagram sponsored posts (which doesn’t cost much) to reach a lot more viewers. Guess what? You don’t need a high tech camera to do this, the camera on your android phone would do just fine.
Also set up a Facebook page as well as other social media accounts where you can constantly upload and share your content. Be sure to put up a link to your YouTube channel or your Sound Cloud page on your profile. Almost every youth in Nigeria has a social media account so putting up your music on those platforms is surely a great way to promote your music in Nigeria. Remember this though, quality content and consistency is key, success doesn’t come overnight and a strong fan base takes time to build.
*Case Study — Vic-O
Many might regard his music as substandard but that’s not the point, the point here is that you know him, and this is because he used social media very effectively. His content (wack or not) was all over the Internet. He was consistent on Twitter, YouTube and Facebook and the “uniqueness” of his music made him very hard to ignore.
2. REMIX POPULAR SONGS
Remaking a hit song is a great way for you to promote your music in Nigeria. Hit songs are popular already and DJs love playing around with remixes. A good cover would easily catch the attention and interest of the listening public since they are already familiar with the original version. Another advantage of doing covers is that when a fan Google searches for the original, your own version could pop up in the result page. Just make sure it’s dope!
*Case Study — Yung6ix
His career took a huge turn in the right direction after he remixed Ice Prince’s hit “Oleku” He remixed it so well and the DJs couldn’t ignore it.
3. GO TO SHOWS
Your physical presence is just as important as your sonic presence. The fans connect more with an artiste when they see them live on stage. There are several small shows that are held weekly or monthly like Tha Zone, Tha Basement, Wax Lyrical etc. Performing regularly at shows like these expose you to a certain crowd, I’m talking about the fans who regularly attend. They will quickly get used to seeing you there and if your music and stagecraft is good, they will quickly convert to your fans. After every performance, make sure you give out your social media handles before leaving the stage for the sake of those who would like to follow your music online. This is an overlooked but very effective way to promote your music in Nigeria.
*Case Study — Boogey
He’s a very skilled rapper and he popped up on the stages of every underground hip hop show held in Lagos. It didn’t take too long before M.I Abaga featured him on his mixtape and he was also nominated for a Headies award.
4. USE THE STREETS
Every artiste, I mean every artiste (even the posh ones) always try to connect with the streets, the reason is simple — The streets have more people than the posh places do, and more people only means more potential fans. Concentrate on the neighborhood where you reside first. Take your songs to the street DJs and local beer parlours and have them play it. You could do complimentary voice-drops for the local DJs and perform at the local bars on weekends or on special occasions. This will endear you to them and their customers. Be part of your neighborhood street carnivals and connect with other good artistes in your area. Slowly, your music can creep out of your neighborhood and spread into others. This is a good way to promote your music in Nigeria.
*Case Study — Small Doctor
He had become a local star at Agege, Lagos before exploding nationwide. Every street DJ & local bar in his hood consistently played his music and it slowly spread into other areas. It wasn’t long before he attained superstar status.
Try out these tips and be consistent with it, you will surely make progress as an artiste.