SEO, or Search engine optimisation is a term used to describe something that has been optimised or created with search engines in mind. Usually relating to websites, businesses and other online platforms – SEO has quickly become one of the most talked about terms in digital marketing.
With that in mind, you may wonder how search engine optimisation could possibly relate to the music industry or how it might affect an artist?
Consider the following scenario:
Band A plays a gig on a Friday night to an audience of 100 people and at the start of their set introduce themselves and tell the audience to find them online. At the end of the night, the bands manager checks their social stats and sees an overall increase of 35 new likes & follows! RESULT!
Band B plays a gig on the same night to a similar sized audience and as before introduce themselves and ask their audience to find them online. Band B doesn’t have the same success, their manager checks social stats and sees a measly increase of only 3 likes/follows.
Now, assuming that both band A & B are of a similar genre, technical ability and performance quality, you may be wondering why there is such a large discrepancy in converting fans from the audience.
Well the truth is that in both scenarios over 50 people from the audience took to search engines to find the band and offer their support – but with dramatically different results. Let’s take a look at the names of the band and consider the reasons why:
Band A were called AD1900 – Returned results in Google: 159,000
Band B were called Dramatic Effect – Returned results in Google: 122,000,000
As you can see from the stats above, band B were fighting against a huge number of returned search results. For them to be anywhere the top they’d have needed to have been a chart topping band with a considerable fan base with a decent level of success.
Band A was fighting against considerably less search results and so had a better chance of being found amongst the other search results.
Tips for choosing an SEO friendly name
Do your research
Make sure that another band, or artist doesn’t already take the name. Worst-case scenario is that two musicians are fighting for the same first page spot. Use a tool like https://namechk.com/ to ensure that the URL you want for your music isn’t already registered.
(Try to keep your URLs consistent across all social media platforms, if you’re /AD1900 on Facebook, you should try to register @AD1900 on twitter. This makes communicating your message at gigs much easier!)
Use some common sense
Don’t call your band “Cute kittens” – as appealing as that name may sound, what kind of results do you think that search engines are going to return for this phrase? We’ll give you a hint:
It’s not going to be your band.
Choose something original
Try to avoid obvious names, like place names, animals, or objects. Try mixing them up and seeing what kind of search results are returned online. Some bands have seen success by changing the spelling of their chosen band name (CHVRCHES for example, pronounced Churches.)