New Release Music Party: So, you've produced the perfect album or single, and now you want to host an online release party to launch it. But there's a ton of planning to do. And how do you even begin to organize the event of the decade?
Determining how to host an online new release music party doesn't have to be an insurmountable mountain. But it will require some preparation and hard work. As it will be an online party, you'll need to choose a suitable platform. After that, it's all about setting a date, arranging the bill, drawing up a list of invites, and wowing your audience.
Here's a list of the critical steps to host an online release party:
- Select Your Platform
- Choose Your Date
- Draft Your Guest List
- Find a Fun Venue
- Work on Your Line-Up
- Sell Tickets for Your Release Party
- Promote Your Event
- Set-Up an Online Merch Store
- Engage with Your Audience
There's, of course, also a great deal of promotion involved. And you'll need to get creative when it comes to entertaining and engaging with your audience. Remember, you won't be with them in the flesh. So, it'll be more of a challenge to feed off each other's energy.
We know it’s been a hard slog putting that album or single together and making it just right for release. But now you need to get people to buy your music. And planning to host an online release party is a great way to spark interest and encourage sales.
A release party allows you to gain media coverage and connect with industry professionals. And it provides the means to recoup some of the money you spent making the album or single.
Our Top Tips on How to Host an Online Party
You’ve worked hard on your prized release. Now it’s time to leverage your fanbase and social platforms to host a killer release party. Hosting the party entirely online comes with its pros and cons. And, because it's a relatively new concept, the process of organizing an online event may seem a little intimidating.
Not to worry. Our top tips on how to host an online release party will have you delighting the crowd.
1. New Release Music Party: Select Your Platform!
First, you’ll need to decide on a platform to host your spectacular release party. And there are several options available to you when live streaming an event. There are obvious platforms like YouTube, Facebook Live, and Instagram Live. Or you may choose to host your party on your artist or band website like a webinar.
Setting up something on your website will require a little more technical know-how. And it could possibly be costly. However, online services are available that help you set up a professional live stream. And some of these providers offer simulcast services allowing you to live stream to multiple destinations at once.
If you have some budget to work with, it may be worth looking at services such as Restream or Dacast. At the very least, they can help you live stream on YouTube and Facebook Live simultaneously. If you have a bigger budget, we highly recommend speaking to a reputable AV company that handles online events.
That said, if you plan to host an online release party on a shoestring budget, it’s best to stick with YouTube. YouTube provides channels with an option to schedule a live stream well in advance. This way, the future stream is promoted via the YouTube algorithm to potentially interested parties. And they have the option of setting a reminder with the click of a button for that live stream.
2. New Release Music Party: Choose Your Date!
You’ll want to give yourself some time to promote, prepare, and build some hype. So, give yourself a few months’ breathing room. But, as soon as the date is set, you should start letting people know about the event.
It’s best to give yourself about 2 to 3 months to promote and build interest before the date of your release party. But take care not to schedule your party at the same time as another significant event.
It's also essential to manage the release date of your album or single around this. Ideally, you should release your single or album about a week or so after the event. This way, the event will pique interest and assist you in promoting your music.
But timing the release of your music to multiple streaming and download platforms can be challenging. It takes longer for music to become available on some platforms than others. And the best way to avoid any delays is to speak to your music distributor.
Having a reputable music distributor to work with is tremendously beneficial. And it doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. If you don’t have a distributor to work with yet, we encourage you to reach out to Sugo Music Group.
No matter where you are in the world, Sugo Music Group can help you time your album or single release perfectly. Their team has worked with numerous musicians for over 35 years. So, they have the skill and experience to get your music on all the right platforms seamlessly and timeously.
3. New Release Music Party: Draft Your Guest List!
When looking to host an online release party, you should think about who you'd like to invite apart from your fans. And just because the party will be online doesn't mean you can't have an exclusive guest list.
It’s a good idea to invite members of the press, bloggers, podcasters, promoters, agents, and other influential individuals in the music industry. If you invite them as special guests, you may benefit from receiving free publicity from them. Who knows, you may land an interview on a prominent music podcast. Or you could be featured on an entertainment news website.
There's an opportunity to get creative with how you invite these influential people. Again, you may not be gathering in person, but you can still send them a fabulous invitation. This could be a physical invite you send to them with some merchandise, like a t-shirt. Or you could set up a landing page with a digital invite that links to your electronic press kit (EPK).
Perhaps you don't have an EPK yet and aren't sure what to include. In that case, look at our detailed guide on how to create an EPK. Don’t forget to update your EPK with information about your upcoming release. This way, the person you’re sending the invite to has all the information they need about you and your music.
4. New Release Music Party: Find a Fun Venue!
Just because you're going to host an online release party doesn't mean you can't broadcast from a great venue. The venue will serve as a backdrop for what your audience will see. So, make sure you find a great space with excellent acoustics that you can decorate.
You could even get really creative with it and look for unusual locations to host the party, adding to the experience. For example, you could broadcast your launch party from the top of a commercial building. Or you could set something up in an empty quarry under the stars.
Just bear in mind that you’ll still need to set up some lighting, camera, and sound rigs, and a small stage. You may find that an existing open-air theatre or outdoor event space has most of what you need to get started. So, sourcing something like this would save you a great deal of time and effort.
You could consider setting up satellite viewing stations in a few major cities if you have some budget to play with. You could have a small live audience at your primary location. And then groups of partygoers at one or to venues elsewhere enjoying the Livestream together.
There are so many options, and the world is your oyster if you have the budget to work with. If not, a simple live stream via YouTube will work just fine.
5. New Release Music Party: Work on Your Line-Up!
Obviously, you, or your band, and your music will be front and center at the event. But you'll need a line-up of other entertainment when you host an online release party. As the highlight of the party, you'll perform at the end of the evening. But you'll need a few acts to entertain the audience throughout the evening before that.
If you’re good friends with artists or bands who draw a similar audience to yours, you should definitely approach them. Asking musician friends to perform at your event will add a sense of camaraderie that the audience is bound to pick up on. This should ensure a fun and uplifting energy during the event.
Any other entertainment you feel is appropriate and attainable can also be added to the bill. And make sure you have a good DJ on hand to keep energy levels up between performances. If you can get a celebrity to perform, you'll have a fantastic drawcard for a diverse audience.
Don’t be shy to ask and aim for the celebrities you really want. The worst they can say is “no”. But because any entertainment can join or contribute from the comfort of their homes, you may be pleasantly surprised. So, if your band is heavily influenced by the Foo Fighters, send them an invite and ask them to perform. You never know what could happen.
Remember that anyone taking part in your event line-up will tell their fans and followers about your event. Which would be a great help to your promotional efforts.
6. New Release Music Party: Sell Tickets for Your Release Party!
Just because you're about to host an online release party doesn't mean you can't sell tickets to the event. Obviously, those you've added to the exclusive guest list won't need to buy a ticket. But everyone else can pay a small charge to join the event online. And the tickets really don't have to be expensive.
Those who already follow you and love your music will be all too happy to purchase a ticket and support you. However, you can encourage ticket sales by running some competitions leading up to the event. These can be run through your social media pages and include ticket and merchandise giveaways.
Another way to encourage ticket sales is to let everyone know what to expect at the event. Let them know who will be performing and when kinds of giveaways you’ll be running for ticket holders on the night. Some giveaway ideas include a one-on-one Zoom call with you, merch hampers, and albums giveaways. The opportunities are endless.
Remember to sell through a reputable online ticketing agent. Beware of online ticketing services you’ve never heard of. And if possible, always do a Google and Trust Pilot review check on the company first.
7. New Release Music Party: Promote Your Event!
In the 2 to 3 months before you host an online release party, you’ll want to promote like crazy. You should always be posting on social media consistently. If that’s once every second day or five times a day, it doesn’t matter. As long as you’re consistent and stay true to your “brand”.
As you approach the date of the event, you should invest in paid advertising on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok. You can use paid and regular posts to build excitement by slowly letting your fans in on the action. Add snippets of behind-the-scenes footage to your posts to tickle their tastebuds. And release a little more information about your new release every few days.
Closer to the time, you can reveal more and more about the album or song. And about the process of getting the music written and recorded. You can also discuss the song lyrics and their meaning with your fans. And about a week before the release party, you could reveal the album artwork to your followers.
8. New Release Music Party: Set-Up an Online Merch Store!
Release parties held in person usually include plenty of giveaways and the opportunity to purchase merchandise. As your party will be online, you’ll need to set up an online merchandise store for partygoers to access.
This will be exclusive merch related to the release party itself and a few other select items. The idea is to give your audience something to remember the event by. And, as ticket holders, you should offer them an opportunity to obtain something they no one else can obtain.
Therefore, having a design made for some merch to commemorate the party would be a great addition to your online release party merch store. You can send out merch discount codes to some of the partygoers. And you can give away some merch on the night, which can be shipped to the winners after the event.
9. New Release Music Party: Engage with Your Audience!
Keeping the audience entertained at an online event can be difficult. You want to make sure they're receiving their money's worth. And you want to ensure that they're engaged enough to stay online for the duration of the event. That way, they'll get to see you perform and hopefully purchase your new single or album. Which is the primary goal.
When you host an online release party, it helps to make the party as interactive as possible. Setting up a live Q&A session before or after the entertainment is always a great idea. Fans want nothing more than to speak to their favorite artist and learn more about them.
As mentioned, running competitions on the night of your event will attract more partygoers. And it serves as a great party memento for them. Giveaways, especially for merch, are also excellent promotional tools to spread the word about your music.
There are, of course, a myriad of other things you could giveaway. And this is undoubtedly a time to get creative. Think “outside the box” when trying to determine what your fans may enjoy as a prize. An example of a fantastic prize is winning an appearance in your next music video.
Gift some of your audience with Spotify and Apple Music coupon codes to download your new release. You can also provide partygoers with a list of where your new release can be streamed or downloaded.
With today’s digital advancements, launch parties and live performances are gearing up to be very different for artists in the near future. The Metaverse will provide musicians with the ultimate platform to host an online release party through virtual reality. This will allow you to be at the party in a fully immersive experience through your VR goggles.
However, not everyone is ready for this level of interactive digital advancement. So, you’ll have to stick with the live streaming option for now.
Getting ready to host an online release party is not for the faint of heart. It requires planning, organization, and determination to succeed. But your work doesn't stop when the party is over. In fact, you'll need to ramp up the promotional posts relating to your release. And you should continue to promote it well after the online release party to keep the momentum going.