Why do I need an online presence?

The short answer: TO GET PAID.

So I’m a poor, young jazz vocalist living in a city with limited performance opportunities for poor, young jazz vocalists. So I decide that traveling to play music in less musically-saturated cities might be nice. But I can’t necessarily afford to bring a band with me. Instead, I’d like to hire folks who are local to the area I’m visiting. How will I find players?

-a quick Google search

-personal recommendations

-I can’t think of any other ways. Just the 2.

Let’s say I’m a talented indie artist from Nashville looking to book a tour. I want to play in Washington, DC but I’ll need to split the bill with a local artist or two in order to increase draw. How will I find bands to play with?

-a quick Google search

-personal recommendations (followed by a quick Google search to vet the recommendations)

I’m a songwriter in Hong Kong and I want to find someone to record my music so I can put it in my friend’s YouTube animation videos (this is a real life story). How will I choose who should record my songs?

-a quick Google search

-personal recommendations

I’m a choral contractor and one of my sopranos has lost her voice last minute. I need another soprano for a vocal session in 18 hours. How will I find someone to replace my fallen diva?


The most terrible and wonderful thing about the internet is that people can find you. But if they look for you, what are they going to see? Are they going to find an article about your high school science fair project, or are they going to find an amazing video of you showcasing your skills? Are they going to find a decaying Soundcloud page with mid-2000s emo ballads or will they find a professional looking webpage that earns their trust? Or will they be able to find you at all? Will their search only yield results about someone else in North Dakota who makes artisan toilet seat covers?

Here are my recommendations:

-If you are a musician, there needs to be a decent video available that displays your skills. Create a YouTube (it’s free) and upload your best video. Make sure the title, description, and tags are relevant and thorough. This will help people find you in a search. I always include “Abigail Flowers”, “Nashville”, “jazz singer”, and “baritone ukulele”.

-Think about a website. If that’s too expensive, do a landing page through Squarespace—I think it’s only $5/month and is still quite effective. If that’s too much, perhaps just purchase the domain name you want.

-If a website is too involved, you can create free profiles on Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube. Yeah, the whole social media empire is corrupt but why not use it for your benefit while you can? Again, make sure your page(s) include relevant information (name, location, instrument, accomplishments).

-Have a bio! Ask a friend to help if it’s too hard. Heck, hire me to write your bio.

-Professional photos are a big plus. They don’t have to be expensive. They just ought to be decent and not have an outrageous filter on them.


If you are living your dream career and getting tons of gigs off of recommendations alone, then I offer you a virtual standing ovation. But if you’ve read this far, that’s probably not the case. I want you to get hired, but you can’t get hired if you’re hard to find. Make it easy for someone to decide you’re right for their gig. Do your best to quickly convey (through a website or social media profile):

-your name

-your general location

-your instrument (and other skills you offer, like arranging)

-what you actually sound like (video or recording)

-your credits (brag in a bio about what you’ve done and who you’ve worked with)

-contact information (email address or contact form on website)

That’s all I’ve got for now—share your thoughts and recommendations with me!