I owe this post to Bob Lefsetz who covered it on his site.

But, it’s such an important topic that I thought we should cover it here too!

Read Bob’s post for sure, but the really interesting stuff is in the Forbes post that he refers to.

The Forbes article is all about how one writer (but also various others) had enormous boosts in traffic to their websites, spikes in sales and long-term fanbase growth by being mentioned on ONE authority blog.

In the cases talked about, these are what they call ‘single author’ blogs – and that’s a key point. These are blogs where a blogger who has become a trusted source and authority in their ‘niche’ has a massively engaged following who react to their recommendations.

But, in music, this could easily be describing the leading blogs such as Pitchfork, but equally the leading blogs in much smaller niches. We have regularly mentioned Chris Bracco’s eBook that explains how to target these blogs. It’s worth $2.99 of anyone’s money.

In short, the traditional forms of promotion (radio, TV and press) now regularly have a far smaller effect on building fanbases and sales than the backing of a leading blog or blogger.

Nowhere near enough musicians understand, believe or pursue this opportunity!

Here’s the choice quotes from the Forbes piece, but I heartily recommend that you read it all.

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  • There’s a big difference between being exposed to a large audience, and being exposed to a comparatively smaller (but still large) audience which is ridiculously passionate.The more effective way is to take a long-term approach. The real misfortune is that nobody else does it. So people will nod and say, ‘Yeah, I should really do that,’ and then they don’t.
  • “You want to focus on the idea, ‘I’m going to add value to this person over time.’ The first thing you could do is leave some thoughtful comments on their blog. Next, you could send them some email saying, ‘Hey, that was really great, but I thought you may have missed this one point. Here’s an interesting article with a different perspective on it.’ If you thought it through and did some research, the author will think, ‘Wow, thanks very much!’ and you are not asking for anything.”
  • “All of a sudden now you’ve differentiated yourself first by adding value. You are not going directly for the kill. Eventually, you could reach out and say, ‘Hey, these are a couple of things I noticed you’re doing that I think that I could help with. I’d love to connect you to this person, etc.’ Then eventually, you can ask, ‘If it’s okay, I just want to ask you for about 60 seconds,’ and ask them about your thing and say, ‘Do you have any advice?’ and ‘Do you think maybe this might be interesting to your audience?”
  • “No pressure. One mistake people make is they often have a ‘one shot and done’ attitude about this: ‘If I don’t get my pitch in, and they don’t like it, it’s over.’ Wrong. It’s really about building a relationship over the long-term. Sounds like a lot of work? Good! Because 99% of people will not do that.”

Here’s the link again.