The Five Must-Have Assets Every Musician Needs

Connecting the dots between how you sound and the visual you present is an incredibly important marketing tool for musicians. We live in a visual age. Therefore if you don’t have a visual identity that aligns with your sound, there’s every chance you’re losing potential fans and not gaining them. If you want to stay ahead, you need visual content to market your music to your desired audience.

  • Video in 2021 was predicted to be more than 82% of online traffic.
  • Content shared with images receives more views and more shares than non-image related content. Think of any online group you’re in where someone will post about a topic and add a “image for visibility” on their post.
  • Images are proven to help your marketing convert.

The five most basic essential assets you’re going to need will be:

  • Artwork 
  • Still shots
  • Video content
  • Logo
  • Typography/ fonts/ brand guidelines or color palette

Then depending on what you’re promoting (for example a song versus a tour), some common general assets produced from this list above include:

  • Website design
  • Single or Album Art
  • Tour poster
  • Social skins 
  • Music Video
  • Visualizers
  • Animated videos
  • Lyric videos
  • Song Commentary (a short video that explains the meaning behind your song)
  • Behind the scenes photo or video 
  • Livestream
  • Trailers
  • Interviews
  • Tour diaries
  • Gifs or memes

What you create and implement as part of your marketing campaign will depend entirely on what you are promoting. If you’re promoting a new song you might have a lyric video, a music video, your single art, a song commentary, behind-the-scenes still photos or video, and an artist interview. When you head out on tour to promote the single your content might likely shift into a trailer, interview, or tour diary to name just a few options.

Tools

Chances are you are marketing your release on a limited budget. This means you’ll need to be savvy with how you and where you spend your time and money. There are a number of ways you can create much of the content listed here in a cost-effective way. Let’s look at some of the options, including what they do (as described by the companies themselves).

Image Creation Tools

  • Adobe Spark: “Adobe Spark is an integrated suite of media creation applications for mobile and web developed by Adobe Systems. It comprises three separate design apps: Spark Page, Spark Post, and Spark Video”.
  • Canva: “Canva is a graphic design platform, used to create social media graphics, presentations, posters, documents, and other visual content. The app includes templates for users to use. The platform is free to use and offers paid subscriptions such as Canva Pro and Canva for Enterprise for additional functionality.”
  • Image Quote: Image Quote is a mobile app (for both iOS and Android) that helps you to add words to a graphic background creating a new image asset.

Video Creation Tools

  • iMovie: “With iMovie for iOS and macOS, you can enjoy your videos like never before. It’s easy to browse your clips and create Hollywood-style trailers and stunning visual clips”
  • Animaker: “is a DIY video animation software. It allows users to create animated videos using pre-built characters and templates”.
  • TikTok: “is a video-focused social networking service owned by Chinese company ByteDance. It hosts a variety of short-form user videos, from genres like dance, comedy, and education, with durations from 15 seconds to three minutes”. You can create your content in-app (and use their photo and video editing tools) or off-app and upload it directly to your account.
  • Instagram: “ is an American photo and video sharing social networking service”. Much like TikTok you can create your content in-app (and use their photo and video editing tools) or off-app, and upload it directly to your account.

Animation Tools

  • Boomerang: “Create captivating mini videos that loop back and forth, then share them with your friends”, in-app, in Instagram. You can export these boomerangs and use them on other platforms as social media content.

Meme Creation Tools

  • iMeme: “Meme generator for Windows and Mac that lets you quickly add captions to popular internet memes”.

Gif Creation Tools

  • Ezgif: “is a simple online GIF maker and toolset for basic animated GIF editing. Here you can create, resize, crop, reverse, optimize, and apply effects”.
  • Giphy: an “online database and search engine that allows users to search for and share short looping videos with no sound, that resemble animated GIF files”

Other Resources

  • Lyric Videos: Fiver or Facebook Groups can be a great way to source lyric videos cheaply.
  • Song Commentary: Ensure you film yourself horizontally and centered in the frame, then use iMovie to do any light editing needed and to cut your horizontal footage into a vertical asset for use in stories, reels, or other 16:9 aspect ratio.

Content and asset creation is one of the most important aspects of marketing your brand and your music. What you talk about should be visually supported at all times - and that means you’ll need a range of these assets to do so. In fact, having a strong, visually appealing aesthetic will go a long way towards aligning your brand with your sound, helping to ensure the first impression that potential new fans have of your brand is a harmonic and cohesive one.


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