Why every marketer should develop a music marketing strategy.

Most marketing and communication managers I run into have a strong opinion about a vast spectrum of subjects. Swiftly and decidedly, they judge scripts, texts, colours, shapes, grading, activation, casting, and much more. When it comes to music, though, they suddenly are less decisive. “I really don’t know anything about music,” I often hear.

The Big Denial
An important explanation for this apparent lack of knowledge is that we feel unable to separate music used commercially from our personal preferences. That makes it personal and, therefore, quite difficult for a lot of people to say something about. And this is wrong; music used in ads are intrinsically personal - they’re for people!

The most important sideshow
Music is becoming more and more the most important sideshow in our lives. According to the Nielsen 260 2015 music report, 91% of all Americans listen to more than 24 hours of music per week. Brands should all develop their own music marketing strategy to ultimately use all the possibilities and insights that music platforms have to offer.

Is it just a gut feeling? Of course not. Music equals big data. What would happen if you were to approach music consumption the same as you approach CRM, CMS, SEO, SEA? What if you could learn how to understand these basic insights on your own and apply them accordingly, thereby converting that gut feeling into a verifiable, obvious ROI?  

You probably already know you can do a lot of research yourself. The Internet offers wonderful sources of information, like Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes (as long as it works, of course), Hype Machine, Pitchfork, Shazam, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, 22tracks, 3voor12, NME, and, of course, YouTube and Facebook, just to name a few.

Beyond that it is useful to map out what the commercial possibilities are and which platforms you should incorporate into your media or marketing mix. Why not work together with the music specialists who use those platforms a lot, like the record labels and music publishers?

Profound knowledge
As a marketer or strategist, you do not have to have an absolute, super detailed knowledge of music, just like you do not have to have a profound knowledge of every unique department in the marketing or advertising trades. It certainly helps if you are able to appreciate the input given by your partners and suppliers, however.

So, get on with it! Start by creating a folder with relevant music platforms you want to follow. Make a top 10 list of songs that perfectly represent the core of your brand or campaign. I look forward to your findings!