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Music Marketing: Pre-Release Checklist

A checklist to ensure you create maximum impact, on and before your release date.

1.Master version of the track including metadata

Ensure master version is named correctly with your name and track title.

Metadata should contain:

Title | Credits | Record label | Publisher | Genre | Mood | Instruments

2. Set a release date

Ensure enough lead time to prepare your launch campaign. This will vary depending on the label or if your releasing it unsigned.

3. Prepare a release folder with all assets for sharing

This will include your release, the album artwork and your EPK (Electronic Press Kit).

Your EPK should include the following:

Artist bio:

When writing (or commissioning) an artist bio, follow these tips:

  • Reference your history and what makes you stand out

  • Mention key milestones (performances, media coverage, collaborations)

  • Talk about your Influences, genres and similar artists

  • Always have a long and short version of the bio for different uses

  • Always keep it up to date with latest info

Press shots:

Professional photos or any images that capture you as a brand and/or fit with the release.

Album artwork:

This should be eye-catching and usually represents the lead track or full EP.

Press Release: These will help you to secure more media coverage, or can be useful for adding trackable links on your website. When writing (or commissioning) a press release for your release, follow these tips:

  • Present the release as a story to maintain interest, talking about your inspiration and production of the track etc

  • Include smart links to your social pages and streaming platforms

  • List upcoming shows and plans for the artist or label

  • List contact details of anyone who may be relevant to contact

Artist one sheet:

A one sheet is useful for labels and distributors to easily understand the new release and the artist. You can also send them out via email or post to fans. When producing (or commissioning) your one sheet you should consider to:

  • Present your most important talking points at this moment in time or for the release

  • Use this as a branding opportunity and present your self image using colours, fonts etc

  • Include a short artist bio

  • Include info about upcoming releases and shows

  • Include a press shot

  • Include links to website, socials and streaming (Tracked if digital or social handles if in print)

  • Include your key previous tracks and links to video content

  • Create multiple versions for live, radio & press

4. Pre-streaming marketing: Set up pre saves and pre orders

Ensure your pre saves and pre-order options are set up across your streaming and download sites, complete with album artwork.

5. Produce all marketing artwork and schedules for the release

This should be both a teaser campaign used to generate interest up to the launch and a launch campaign prepared ready to post after the drop. You should create banners and profile pictures to fit each social media and streaming platform used. This should ideally be artwork leading up to the launch, then new or edited artwork for post launch. Using consistent creative across all platforms will create a bigger impact.

Teaser content:

Consider to start drip feeding teaser content up to a month in advance

A few creative ideas for pre-launch:

  • Animated artwork

  • Short promo video or snippet of music video

  • Snippets of the new tracks

  • Post a series of images or quotes - Don’t give away too much, keep people intrigued

  • Plan ahead and record behind the scenes content to use, such as creating video during the production of the track

  • Share pre-save & pre-order smart links

A few creative ideas for launch / post launch:

  • Album artwork

  • Swipe up to buy stories

  • Full music video

  • Any media and PR

  • Any other engaging content on the release to maintain a continued steady flow of advertising.

Always remember to adjust the pre & post designs to fit the specs for each platform

6a. Set up a website or landing page on current site optimised for the release

This page should be heavily branded to suit the release, and include all social and streaming links. Data capture through the site will provide accurate insights to help you ensure you make informed decisions on how to best reach your target audience throughout the campaign. You can also use pixels for remarketing at a later date, which would allow you to choose to specifically market to engaged fans and serve personalised messages and content to certain demographics.

6b. Set up Data Capture:

  • All links used should be smart links

  • Use tracking pixels on your website page (Google pixels, facebook pixels etc)

  • If possible, put tracking pixels in your smart links before you post them to socials and streaming platforms. This can be done in the back end of some smartlink providers. (Linkfire is a good choice)

  • Use google tag manager to keep all your tracking pixel data in one place from separate pixels

7. Other marketing to consider

  • Playlisting: securing slots on playlists and submitting to curators

  • YouTube videos and promotion

  • Look for brands offering premieres


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