The holidays are fast approaching and I’m super sure that fans are looking forward to any music release from you whether that’d be a full album, an extended play, a single, or even a collab.
But how do you market them during the holidays?
Here’s 21 tips we could think of to help you market your music while enjoying the holiday season.
#1. CREATE SCHEDULED POSTS
The holiday season is one of the most hectic times for most even if it should be a time to relax.
But you don’t have to spend so much time managing your stuff online!
Go and take advantage of platforms that allow you to make scheduled posts to announce a music or merch release or if you just want to greet them “Happy Holidays!”
It’s one of the best ways for both you and your crew to enjoy your holidays while still connecting with fans.
#2. TRY RELEASING A HOLIDAY SINGLE
Make a cover of classic holiday songs and release it at the right time.
A good cover of an already good holiday song will bring you in more fans.
You can also release an original holiday song if you want to. If your single is great, it will surely attract new fans.
You never know, if they loved it so much, they might just play it every year during the holidays, or even on days when they feel like they need that holiday feels.
#3. RELEASE FESTIVE MERCH
Any plans of releasing this holiday season?
Then you should, because people, not just fans, love to buy gifts for their important people. This is also another way to set your creativity in motion.
You can create merch that’s worth gifting to others as well as have those merch perfect for the holidays like stockings, santa hats, holiday cards, and more.
#4. START A CROWDSOURCED PROJECT
The best way to successfully market your music is to let your fans join in on the fun.
There are a lot of trends in different social media platforms but the easiest way to trend your project would be on TikTok.
You can start the project by picking a holiday theme like “All I Want For Christmas Is…” or you can create a dance challenge for your favorite holiday song or your own holiday song.
I’m sure fans would love it.
#5. ORGANIZE A GIVEAWAY FOR YOUR FANS
Fans and people in general love giveaways, moreso during the holidays.
What you need to do is just create a photo, with the mechanics and other details, which you can post across all your social media platforms.
Make sure the mechanics are not too hard to accomplish, though, or fans might get discouraged to join in.
Consider having these things as prizes:
- Limited edition album or merch
- Signed album (vinyl, CD, or cassette)
- Early download access to an upcoming music release
- A holiday care package which might include merch, vinyl, CDs, a holiday card, candy, and more.
#6. OFFER HOLIDAY MERCH SALE
A way to sell more merchandise is to offer your fans a discount.
Customers especially love spending less money for more items so this would be a good decision to make.
Select a few merch items you’ll put on sale and promote it on your social media accounts.
Have your merchandise and music bundled together and offer it as a gift set. Take advantage of the shopping madness that sets in every holiday season and generate more profit.
#7. COLLABORATE AND CREATE A PLAYLIST WITH OTHER ARTISTS
This is where your connections come in handy.
Contact and team up with fellow musicians and create a playlist for the holidays. You can put your holiday songs together and share it with your fans.
It’s a good way to make their fans your fans too.
You can do extra promos for it too and if you have the time and money to spare you can make it into an album instead.
#8. SEND HOLIDAY GREETING CARDS TO YOUR FANS
To make a more personal connection with your fans, instead of greeting them through a tweet, an instagram post, etc. why not send them a card instead?
Receiving some of that holiday cheer from your favorite musician can do wonders.
They’ll be happy to know that you appreciate their support.
#9. PREPARE A HOLIDAY SET-LIST
Shows and gigs during the holiday seasons are mostly jam packed, with a lot of people having more time to spare than any other season of the year.
If you want, you can do some shows and make sure you have a holiday set-list prepared for it.
Try adding 5 to 10 holiday songs in between your songs to give your performance a more festive feel.
#10. RECORD A HOLIDAY VIDEO/GREETING
Releasing a holiday single?
Then you might as well have a video accompanying it too.
If you don’t have a single to release then you can just upload a holiday video greeting for your fans, maybe with you singing a verse of your favorite holiday song.
#11. SHARE PERSONAL HOLIDAY STORIES WITH FANS
The holidays have always been a time when people feel the most sentimental.
Move the heart of your fans by sharing your own childhood memories during the holidays on your social media accounts.
Go on Instagram, do a live and share them, you can ask your fans’ stories too. You can also post throwback pics of your holiday memories on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.
#12. GIVE BACK
The holiday season is the time for giving and that’s why exchanging and giving gifts are rampant during this season.
Giving back will put you and your image in a positive light.
You can give back to your fans and your community by arranging a special showcase or a party with the proceeds or a portion of it donated to charity.
#13. HOST A LISTENING PARTY
Why not host a listening party if you have a large enough fanbase?
You can use Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Station Head, Twitter Space, or using streaming platforms like Twitch to hold it. This is the most effort-free way to do it.
But if you want to and have the money and time to spare, then you can try renting a space, design it for the listening party and then invite fans to come.
There can be a fee if you want to or it could be for free.
#14. DO A PROFILE OR WEBSITE MAKEOVER
When you’re releasing or doing anything during the holidays, whether that be releasing music, releasing merch, or performing on a festival or show, you gotta update your profile or website.
Make it more festive and Christmasy but it better matches the feel or theme of your release.
You can do it across all your social media accounts too, to make you look more professional.
#15. PITCH YOUR HOLIDAY SINGLE TO HOLIDAY – THEMED SPOTIFY PLAYLISTS
There are millions of active Spotify users and when it comes to holiday playlists. And most of these users rely on Spotify-made ones or those that are already existing.
Make sure to pitch your single or album early on, before you release them, because this will help you reach more audience.
#16. ARRANGE A CAROLING CONTEST
Another idea for your crowdsourced project would be a caroling contest.
What makes this different though is its a contest with winners. And when we have winners there will always be prizes.
You can encourage them to join the contest and then perform a holiday song with them wearing the craziest holiday outfit they have or can think of.
You can decide on the criteria and pick a winner after judging.
Or you can just decide on the winner through the engagements their entry gets. It’s a good way to engage fans, and they’ll love it too since you’ll be giving out prizes.
#17. SEND HOLIDAY MARKETING EMAILS
The year-round utilization of emails as a marketing strategy is an excellent one and is very effective especially during the holiday season.
Consider the things your fans and casual listeners are looking for during these times. They may be looking for special discounts, gift ideas, and more.
From there, write up and create an email that would be providing what you think will appeal to your fanbase.
Keep in mind that during these times, most people do holiday shopping hunting for decorations and gifts. So it would be best to offer some discount.
And try to include an incentive like free shipping or free gift wrapping.
#18. BE CONSISTENT
Whatever you’ve chosen to do, you gotta make sure you are consistent with it.
Do everything with consistency, whether you post on social media platforms, do lives or streaming parties, or you go to gigs.
After some time, with the effort you’ve put through, you will surely see good results.
#19. DO SOME LOCAL MARKETING
Wherever city you may be residing, I’m pretty sure there will be some events arranged for the upcoming holiday season.
You better participate in whatever local activities there are. Reach out to local venues and see if they need someone to do some live performance.
Try hitting up your city’s Facebook groups too so you know what’s going on and how you can join.
#20. PERFORM IN NON-TRADITIONAL VENUES
People are out and about during the holiday season and this becomes a great opportunity for concerts.
It would be a great surprise to have some little music in a place where music is not usually found.
It does not need to be exclusively holiday music, though, just don’t forget to add some to your setlist.
#21. PRESENT YOUR FANS A GIFT GUIDE
Gift guides are one of the easiest promotional tools you can create for the holidays.
It’s also a way for you to show your fans what you love as well as earn some money from it too. You can name your guide as “Gift for those (bookworms), like me”.
Then you can proceed listing at least three items.
Of course, it would be best if you include items that are from your released merch.
For the above mentioned guide, you can have a book, a mug, and a bookmark, with the last two being your merch.
There are a lot more where that came from but let’s end it with these 21 tips.
Remember that it all comes down to knowing who you are, who your fans are, and what they want.
And if you need a company for your merch printing, we’re here for you!
James Hill is a veteran of the music industry. He first worked at Warner Reprise Records then later joined Interscope/ Geffen Records where he managed producers and songwriters and got his first platinum record for Keyshia Cole’s The Way It Is. He is now helping indie artists with branding and manufacturing through his company Unified Manufacturing, a CD/DVD/vinyl and merch company in LA.