In the news this week, “Jay Z and Justin Timberlake made social media history“ by premiering the video for their track ‘Holy Grail’ on Facebook. In the four days since it was posted, the video has gained over 200, 000 Likes and been shared over 95,000 times.
Then, Lily Allen announced her comeback via Twitter:
And Arcade Fire released a ‘mysterious snippet’ of one of their new tracks on Spotify:
This piece of audio is the latest in a trail of social media crumbs (including posts on Instagram and Twitter) left by the band to generate buzz around their upcoming album. By the time I saw the Arcade Fire story it already had 259 re-tweets, 39 Facebook likes and had been shared via email 322 times.
Instead of a carefully crafted press release which is sent out to selected media outlets in the hopes of gaining some positive coverage, now it seems a simple post of 140 characters or less, a photo with a filter, or a mere 15 seconds of audio can help artists engage with fans and generate significant buzz online.
Further, the use of social to spruik music appears to be industry wide crossing a variety of genres, from big international acts to garage bands and laptop DJs. It is also interesting to watch how the unique features of each platform are being used in concert with other social sites as part of new communication strategies that are specific to the music industry.
Has the increased use of social media platforms by artists to release and promote their music killed the good old press release? What does this mean for the future of music public relations? Will we see traditional public relations strategies and practices give way to solely digital and social media based campaigns?