The number of individuals engaged in music streaming is on the rise, as revealed by a study conducted by Musically.com. The research indicates that the weekly average time spent on music listening has grown from 17 to 18 hours in a single year. This increasing trend makes it an excellent time to launch a music blog. Keep reading to learn how to start a music blog in 2023.
This guide aims to assist those who have a deep passion for music and wish to establish a blog around their interests. We will cover why starting a music blog is beneficial and how you can create one.
Moreover, I will provide you with strategies for initiating and marketing your blog, enabling you to earn from something you love doing.
Here Are 10 Easy Steps to Start a Music Blog:
Success in music blogging lies in consistency and passion for the music topics you explore. A profound love and understanding of music, or a strong motivation to learn more about it, is all you need to get started.
Before we delve into the specifics, let’s explore compelling reasons to start a music blog.
Why Launch a Music Blog?
Starting a music blog can be appealing for several reasons. As a music blogger, you can express your opinions and thoughts on various music artists, instruments, and the latest technology in the music industry.
For those who have set up their own home or recording studios and are deeply fascinated by music, a blog offers the opportunity to express your passion. This in itself is a valid reason to get started.
Additionally, owning a blog can grant you exclusive access to artists and concerts that you wouldn’t have otherwise.
Here are some other reasons why launching a music blog can be advantageous:
Promote Your Work on Your Music Blog
A music blog not only lets you express your creativity but also serves as a valuable platform for musicians to promote their work. In the digital age, artists need an online presence, and your blog can aid in expanding your personal brand and establishing you as an influencer in the music industry.
Artists are often willing to pay for exposure, and your blog could potentially assist in the rise of the next big name in the music industry.
Refine Your Writing Skills
Regularly writing about music can help you understand blogging best practices and improve your writing skills. Good writing is a universally valued skill, useful in almost any professional setting.
Build Relationships With Your Favorite Artists
Once your blog starts gaining recognition in the industry, you’ll have the opportunity to connect with your favorite artists, record labels, tour managers, and others within the music industry. You’ll also be able to build a community of music lovers and fans who share your interests.
Access to Free Music Events
Starting a music blog can open up exciting opportunities, such as receiving free music and exclusive access to events (often with VIP access). These could include live performances, club events, concerts, and music festivals. As your blog grows, you’ll become an industry ‘insider’ with access to the latest news, new songs, and pre-releases before anyone else.
Earn Money With Starting a Music Blog
The best part about starting a music blog is the potential to earn money from something you love so much that you’d do it for free. Whether this is a hobby, a side hustle, or a full-time career, providing value to your readers can lead to financial benefits.
Of course, there are certain tricks of the trade to learn, but don’t worry. We’ll provide insights later in this guide on how you can monetize your blog.
Now that we’ve covered the reasons to start a music blog, let’s delve into the actual process of creating one.
Steps to How to Start a Music Blog:
1. Pick The Niche of Your Music Blog
Launching your music blog hinges on two intertwined decisions: defining your focus and selecting your niche. Your focus — what you blog about and who your audience is — will greatly influence your niche and vice versa. Begin by identifying your music interests, whether that’s a specific genre, artist, instrument, or industry aspect. This passion will not only fuel authentic writing but also serve as motivation during tough times.
The type of content you plan to generate will shape your blog’s tone and direction. Will you dissect song meanings, explore local artists, or provide industry news? Do you aim to celebrate the music you love or critique the music you don’t? Also, ponder whether you want to spotlight popular musicians or emerging artists. Your blog’s uniqueness will stem from your unique perspective, content, and delivery.
Avoid the trap of attempting to appeal to everyone; instead, cater to a specific group that shares your interest. This allows for more targeted content. For instance, start with posts about a favorite artist, then gradually cover related artists or genres. This ‘start narrow, grow broad’ strategy is a proven path to blog success.
Once you’ve pinpointed your blog’s focus, it’s time to define your music niche — essentially what your blog will be about and the audience you aim to serve. Your niche should fill a gap in the music blogosphere, providing real value to your audience. Whether your blog focuses on a specific genre, music education, or artist resources, remember there’s no right or wrong choice. What matters is your passion and your ability to offer unique value to your audience.
2. Build Your Brand Online
To distinguish yourself in the saturated online landscape, establishing a unique and compelling brand is crucial. Branding is much more than just your blog’s name or logo; it encapsulates the essence of your blog, representing its personality and values.
The process of brand building encompasses several elements: from your blog’s name to its logo, the tone of voice in your posts, the fonts and colors you adopt, and the consistency of these elements across various platforms or materials where you produce content. It’s the thread that weaves through every aspect of your blog, creating a unified and recognizable presence.
Your brand is essentially your blog’s identity. It enables people to identify and connect with your content. Whether they stumble upon your material on social media or spot it in an online magazine, your distinct brand elements should make your content immediately recognizable, regardless of the platform.
However, establishing a brand demands careful consideration and time. Align your brand with the type of content you aim to produce. Consider how you want to be perceived within the music marketplace to guide your branding decisions. Are you a tastemaker, a critic, a supporter of indie music, or a hub for music news? Your brand should reflect your unique positioning.
Moreover, consider how your brand can appeal to and resonate with your target audience. What colors, fonts, and tone of voice would they find engaging? What values should your brand embody to create a connection with them?
Building a brand also entails consistency. Ensure that your branding elements remain consistent across all platforms, creating a cohesive image that amplifies your blog’s recognition.
In essence, your brand should be something you take pride in – a true reflection of your blog’s purpose, values, and identity. It’s not just about aesthetics; it’s about creating an identity that resonates with your audience and stands the test of time. Building a brand is an essential step of how to start a music blog.
3. Choose the Best Blogging Platform to Make Money
The best blogging platform to make money also happens to be the easiest blogging platform to use: WordPress.
There are other options, including free ones, such as Wix, Blogger, or Tumbler. However, for a professional and profitable blog, the free blogging platforms will fall short. I highly recommend just using WordPress and Bluehost for your hosting.
if you’re serious about growing and monetizing your blog, consider a paid platform like WordPress(dot)org. Don’t confuse this with the free version, WordPress(dot)com; they are distinct entities.
Why should you opt for a self-hosted WordPress platform for your music blog? The reasons are manifold. Self-hosted WordPress outperforms free alternatives by providing extensive customization options, enabling you to design your blog precisely as you envision. It also offers various monetization strategies, transforming blog traffic into leads and sales — features typically unavailable on free platforms.
- Beginner-friendly: No coding experience required.
- One-click install and easy customization.
- Seamless integration with thousands of WordPress plugins to enhance site functionality.
- Flexibility in monetizing your website.
- A supportive community of users and developers.
- Professional appearance.
- Unlimited customization.
- WordPress powers 37% of the internet.
- 59.4% of all CMS-built websites use WordPress.
- Among the top 10,000 blogs globally, WordPress powers 34%.
- Weekly, over 1.1 million domains are registered thanks to WordPress.
- WordPress users generate 70.5 million posts each month.
As you’re constructing a blog, your chosen platform should support clear, visually engaging page layouts and facilitate easy audio playback and video and file embedding. WordPress provides all these features and more, marking it as an excellent choice for your music blog.
WAIT! Are you wondering How Long Does It Take to Make Money Blogging?
4. How to Choose a Blog Domain Name?
An essential consideration when starting your music blog is selecting your domain name – the unique address users will type to access your website. Your domain name should reflect your brand’s content and distinguish you from other music blogs or brands.
When selecting a domain name, keep in mind your blog’s focus, the type of music you’ll discuss, and your target audience. Here are some guidelines to help you create a perfect domain name:
- Prefer .com Extension: Opt for a .com extension as it’s most familiar and easy to remember.
- Ensure Scalability: Choose a broad name that allows room for expansion as your blog evolves.
- Keep it Short and Memorable: Avoid long or complicated words. Your blog’s name should be brandable and memorable.
- Use Alliteration: Names with similar sounding words or starting letters are catchy and easy to recall, like ‘HipHopHype,’ ‘PigeonsandPlanes,’ or ‘RapRadar.’
- Get Creative: If your desired name is taken, use synonyms or unique words to create an available name that’s equally engaging.
- Consider Adding Extra Words: If your ideal name is taken, try adding words to it, like ‘TheBluesBlog’ instead of ‘BluesBlog.’
- Create a Concept: Brainstorm names aligned with your blog’s purpose, such as ‘PopJustice,’ which is known for its unique take on pop music.
- Utilize Name-Generating Tools: If you’re stuck, tools like Instant Domain Search and Lean Domain Search can suggest combinations based on your keywords.
- Avoid Expensive Domain Names: Initially, go for a standard domain name. As your blog grows, you can consider more exclusive names.
- Don’t Obsess Over the Perfect Name: Don’t let the quest for the perfect name hinder your progress. Spend a few hours on this task, then move forward.
Remember to purchase your domain from a trusted registrar such as Bluehost. Typical domain names cost between $10 and $15 per year and work on an annual subscription basis. Renew your domain timely to avoid downtime or risk losing it to someone else.
5. Pick a WordPress Theme
Selecting an appropriate WordPress theme is a crucial step in setting up your music blog. A theme will shape your blog’s layout, impression on visitors, and navigation ease. Among the multitude of WordPress themes, here are five recommendations:
- Extra: This versatile WordPress theme from Elegant Themes is ideal for various blog types. It offers new modules within the Divi Builder, helping you curate content effectively. It provides you with an intuitive layout, post carousel, post slider, and tabbed posts. Extra lets you enjoy over 800 pre-made layouts with comprehensive customization options. It costs $89 per year, or $249 for a lifetime subscription.
- Olsen: Perfect for lifestyle or fashion blogs, Olsen offers a focused layout with crisp fonts. It features a unique ‘Featured Content’ slider and an Instagram footer widget, perfect for showcasing your work. The downside is that you need to pay to use the Instagram feature. Olsen Pro is available for $34.30 per year.
- Newspaper: If you’re planning to post fresh content daily, Newspaper is an ideal choice. This theme is highly adaptable, easy to use, and comes with Google AMP integration, ensuring a seamless experience for mobile users. It offers over 100 pre-built websites and over 1000 pre-made templates, pages, posts, and sections. You can purchase it for $59 for a regular license.
- Akea: For bloggers preferring a minimalist style, Akea from GoodLayers is an excellent option. You’ll enjoy total control over your content presentation, with options to adjust spacing, tweak thumbnail sizes, and upload your own fonts.
- Astra WordPress Theme: Astra is a fast, fully customizable and beautiful WordPress theme that is ideal for blogs, personal portfolios, business websites, and WooCommerce storefronts. Its lightweight design ensures fast loading times, which can enhance your blog’s user experience and SEO. The theme is available for free, but there’s also a Pro version that unlocks more advanced features and customization options. Astra Pro is available at $59 for an annual subscription or $249 for a lifetime subscription.
Remember, the theme you choose should align with the style and content of your music blog. Experiment with different themes until you find the one that suits your blog’s aesthetic and functional needs.
6. Install Essential Free WordPress Plugins
For anyone managing a WordPress site, plugins are essential tools that can greatly enhance functionality, improve site performance, and optimize for SEO. As you set up your site, consider installing these seven free WordPress plugins that have proven invaluable for many users.
1. Jetpack WordPress Plugin
Jetpack is a comprehensive WordPress plugin that provides a range of features to enhance the performance and security of your site. It offers real-time backups, spam protection, and downtime monitoring to keep your site secure. It also provides site analytics, SEO tools, and automatic social media sharing to help increase your site’s visibility and reach.
Moreover, Jetpack offers numerous design tools, including hundreds of professional themes, high-speed image and video content delivery network, and lazy image loading for a faster mobile experience.
2. Yoast SEO
Yoast SEO is one of the most popular WordPress plugins for search engine optimization. It provides a comprehensive set of tools to help you optimize your content for search engines. This includes keyword and meta description templating, readability analysis, and technical SEO enhancements like XML sitemaps and canonical URLs. Yoast SEO also offers schema.org integration, which helps search engines understand your content better, potentially improving your site’s search rankings.
3. Akismet Anti-Spam
With the increase in spam comments across the web, having a reliable anti-spam plugin is critical for maintaining the integrity of your site. Akismet Anti-Spam is a free plugin that checks comments and contact form submissions against a global database of spam. It prevents harmful content from being published on your site and provides a status history for each comment so you can see which ones were caught or cleared by Akismet.
4. WP Super Cache
WP Super Cache is a static caching plugin for WordPress that can dramatically improve your site’s load times. By generating static HTML files from your dynamic WordPress site and serving those to the vast majority of your users, WP Super Cache can reduce the load on your server and make your site more responsive.
5. Google XML Sitemaps
A sitemap is crucial for helping search engines index your website. Google XML Sitemaps is a WordPress plugin that generates a special XML sitemap, making it easier for search engines to view the complete structure of your site and retrieve it more efficiently. The plugin supports all kinds of WordPress generated pages and custom URLs and notifies all major search engines every time you create a post.
6. Smush Image Compression and Optimization
Images can significantly impact your site’s load times. Smush Image Compression and Optimization is a WordPress plugin that reduces image file sizes, improves performance, and boosts your SEO. It uses advanced compression techniques to automatically optimize your images without a visible drop in quality.
WPForms is a beginner-friendly WordPress contact form plugin. It allows you to create beautiful contact forms, feedback forms, subscription forms, payment forms, and other types of forms for your site in minutes, not hours. It’s a drag & drop WordPress form builder that’s both easy and powerful.
These seven free WordPress plugins offer a variety of features that can improve the functionality, performance, and visibility of your website. Remember to choose plugins that align with your site’s needs and don’t overdo it, as having too many plugins can slow down your site.
7. Plan Your Content and Marketing Strategy
The core of learning how to start a music blog lies in a well-crafted content and marketing strategy. No matter how sleek your website looks or how many plugins you’ve installed, your blog’s success hinges on the quality of your content and how well you market it.
Content Strategy for How to Start a Music Blog
Begin by brainstorming the type of content you want to create. This could range from album reviews, artist profiles, music industry news, interviews, concert recaps, or even personal anecdotes about your musical journey. The key is to remain authentic and true to your voice, as this is what will set your music blog apart.
Remember, you’re not just learning how to start a music blog; you’re aiming to build a brand and a community. Regularly posting high-quality content that provides value to your readers will help establish your blog as a go-to resource in the music industry. To ensure consistency, develop a content calendar outlining what you will post and when.
Marketing Strategy for How to Start a Music Blog
Your marketing strategy is crucial in attracting and retaining readers. Start by optimizing your content for search engines (SEO) to increase visibility. Use relevant keywords, create compelling meta descriptions, and utilize SEO plugins to make your content easily discoverable.
Next, leverage the power of social media. Platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and TikTok are perfect for engaging with your audience, promoting new content, and building a community. Consider creating unique hashtags, hosting live listening sessions, or running contests to increase engagement.
Email marketing is another powerful tool. Create a newsletter signup on your blog to collect email addresses. Then, send regular updates about new blog posts, exclusive content, or upcoming events.
Collaboration can also boost your blog’s visibility. Reach out to other music bloggers, musicians, or industry insiders for guest posts or interviews. This not only provides unique content for your blog but also exposes you to a broader audience.
Finally, don’t forget about offline marketing. Attend concerts, music festivals, and networking events. Not only will you discover new content for your blog, but you’ll also meet potential collaborators and readers.
Learning how to start a music blog involves more than just setting up a site. A robust content and marketing strategy will ensure your blog resonates with readers, builds a loyal following, and stands out in the music blogging scene. Always remember, the key to a successful music blog is a passion for music, a commitment to quality content, and a savvy marketing strategy.