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My Top Strategies for Growing a Successful Music Blog

Want to share your music knowledge with the masses?

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Yakobchuk Olena — stock.adobe.com

Opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of Rolling Stone editors or publishers.

Do you have a passion for music? Want to share your music knowledge with the masses? Based on my experience in creating and running a music blog, My Wedding Songs, I’ve learned a few things along the way about what it takes to become a taste-maker in a niche music category. In helping couples plan their wedding day playlist to helping DJs expand their repertoire, I’ve discovered a few best practices to create a successful music blog and online business. Here is some advice to get you started in the right direction for success.

Select a Music Micro Niche

When selecting your music category, you want to try to be a big fish in a small pond. For example, if you want to be a blog about hip-hop, rock or country music, there are already authoritative websites that exist that you would complete against. Trying to take readership from them is an uphill battle.

However, the more you can niche down, the more likelihood of success. As the saying goes, “a jack of all trades is a master of none.” If you are in the hip-hop category, consider breaking it down into a more specific category like Christian rap, trap or crunk. When reviewing the country genre, many of the subgenres may still be too big to target, like bluegrass. Consider niching down even further to include subgenres like Red Dirt or bro-country. A few subgenres in the rock industry you might explore include emo, post-rock and pop-punk.

Take the time to do your research. Choose a music genre that gets you out of bed every morning and that you can see yourself writing thousands of articles on over time.

Start a Newsletter on Day One

When you own a website, unless you sell a physical product, the best way to capture your audience and turn them into raving fans is to add them to your newsletter. Make the newsletter of great value to your readers. Whether you send emails daily, weekly or monthly, the content must contain information they look forward to getting.

Another great way to capture your audience’s information is to offer a lead magnet. This could be a planner, printable or calculator. Here are a few examples of popular lead magnets.

Publish Consistently

Your readers want to trust you and know that you will be there for them when you say you will be. Stick to your publishing dates. Whether you publish multiple times a day, daily or weekly, always keep your schedule. You can always post more frequently, but never decrease. This will keep Google crawlers and readers coming back to your website too.

Write Evergreen Content

Evergreen content stays relevant over a long period of time. Updating content periodically will also have readers coming back to your website for the latest developments. Examples of this kind of content include music charts, music artists’ bios and the greatest artists in your genre. Don’t just rely on the latest news.

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Know Your Numbers

KPIs, key performance indicators, are the numbers that are most valuable to your blog’s success. These numbers also help make better business decisions. Important numbers include:

• Number of website visitors from organic search and paid advertising.

• Number of newsletter subscribers and the source they came from.

• Your expenses over time.

• Sources of all revenue.

• Your RPM (revenue per 1,000 visitors).

• Number of keyword phrases in the top three positions on Google, (which receive 75% of search clicks).

• Search impressions and search clicks.

• The average number of pages visited per visitor.

Don’t get caught up on vanity numbers such as the number of social media followers and the number of website visitors. Use these numbers as guidelines, but I don’t recommend using them to make decisions. It is better to track social interactions (e.g., likes, mentions, comments) and website conversions (e.g., calls, form fills, sign-ups).

Write With a Purpose

Before deciding to write a blog post or article, what do you want the outcome to be from it? If no one is searching for the topic, consider revising the focus. Here’s how to approach writing purposeful articles:

• Perform keyword research to determine if anyone is interested in your topic. Know if the intended audience is large enough to target.

• You must understand search engine optimization, the process of increasing your visibility in search.

• Write your content as a benefit for your readers and solve their problems.

Be Different, Not Better

As the authors of the book Play Bigger: How Pirates, Dreamers, and Innovators Create and Dominate Markets convey, what makes you stand out is being different from everyone else in the same space and being the category taste-maker in your own space. If you are one of many, you’re all fighting over the same piece of the pie. If you have your own pie, you can enjoy it all to yourself.

Having a successful music blog means having patience while you grow your audience, loving the topic and being different from everyone else. Don’t give up — each action is a chance to grow into an influential blog.

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