by Rhetta Akamatsu
As a music journalist, I depend a lot on artists’ websites for information when I am writing articles. So, if you want your website to get you the attention for which you put it up, here are some suggestions:
1. Keep your website up to date!
Use WordPress or another easy Content Management System so you can easily change information yourself, in just a few minutes. Having out of date tour information, bios of musicians who have left the band, or other wrong information is unprofessional and makes it look like you don’t care, which is a bad impression. Please don’t just put up the website and forget it.
Editors Note: WordPress is free to install and use, check with your hosting provider about having it installed on your site. With any Contact Management System you will need a good theme to present and layout your website. We use “Themify” themes for Making a Scene and we have found their Themify Builder is both powerful and easy to use. Their Band Theme is a great starting point for any band.
2. Don’t use hard-to-read fonts or text colors, no matter how fantastic you think they look.
You want readers and search engines to be able to quickly and easily get the information. Many people have trouble reading such combinations as yellow text on a red background. If you’re not sure, ask a few friends to check the site on tablets or phones and make sure they are easy to read.
3. Provide all band member names!
This is VERY important to journalists! It is frustrating to search through social media to try to find the name of the drummer or bassist so you can mention them in a review or article!
4. Provide some good-quality photos journalists can use.
These don’t have to be professional shots as long as they are clear, hi-res photos. 300dpi for print and at least 900+ x 900+ at 72dpi for web publishing. You should have both vertical and horizontal perspective pictures
5. Do provide videos
Short clips, or links to videos so journalists who are interested but have not heard you yet can hear you, and to make it easy for them to share your music with their articles.
If you do these simple things, journalists, booking agents, and other music professionals will love you, and so will your fans. You can do it yourself, but don’t be lazy! A website that only lists your name and your tour schedule with a picture of the band is barely better than no website at all, and yet I often see them. Take the little time to do it right and it will be worth it!