The Importance Of Updating Keywords
Whether you're composing music or uploading videos, in order for your content to be seen you need to have tags or keywords. With the constant uploading of new media and the change in popular demand, what should we be doing with the old media we've uploaded?
I've mentioned before how I have a lot of music and am still coming up with new stuff to upload to stock music libraries and occasionally on YouTube. Every time something is uploaded on a stock music library you are required to add somewhere between twenty and fifty keywords. On YouTube, this is optional but since it helps people find your work, you'd be silly not to add them.
Most production libraries, if you take the time to look, will have somewhere where they tell you what keywords are popular at the moment. There are some that will always be at the top. For example, words like 'happy', 'inspirational', 'cinematic', 'background', etc. so it's always a good idea to add those to your music (if they fit with the mood and style).
Like twitter, however, there are trends in the market too. Not long ago there was that guy who sang the sea shanty Wellerman on TikTok, it trended everywhere and then the next thing we know, he's been offered a record deal. At the same time, the term 'sea shanty' shot right to the top of stock music library keywords being searched for so those authors who had sea shanty music on a production library already would have seen a huge influx in downloads on their music.
It turned out that I did have a song online that wasn't exactly a sea shanty but was a song you might have heard in a pirate tavern and I saw that getting more downloads due to the word 'pirate' being searched for during Wellerman's popularity.
It's difficult to predict trends, especially when they can seem so random but by thinking more broadly, even thinking ahead to what happens later on in the year, you'll come up with words you didn't think would matter. Important dates are a great example. Yes, christmas only happens once a year but with it being a commercial money-maker, christmas music becomes very popular and you'd be surprised at how early companies start working on their christmas adverts. Using seasonal words is good too; everyone loves summer, holiday-like music.
While only having twenty words, most stock music libraries give you the opportunity to edit your tracks and change those keywords. Yes, uploading new music with popular trends is great but changing keywords on old music too, while taking more time away from creating new music, gives them new life and sends more money your way.
A YOUTUBE EXAMPLE
On YouTube, I uploaded a saxophone arrangement of a popular Halo song (from the game franchise). I'd actually written this in 2014 but only decided to upload it to YouTube in 2018. It didn't get many hits, despite having keywords like 'Halo', 'A Walk In The Woods' (the original song's title), 'xbox', etc.
Fast-forward a couple of years, the Xbox Series X (and S) is out and there has been an increasing build-up in excitement over the new Halo game in development, Halo Infinite. I decided to add two new keywords: 'Halo Infinite' and 'Xbox Series X' and now a video that only had about fifty views for its first two years on YouTube is now seeing fifty a day and that number continues to grow. Just by adding two new keywords that are popular at the moment.
Yes, previously uploaded material is old news but when trends come around again a lot, it seems silly not to make use of the ability to constantly update keywords on our old uploaded media. If, like myself, you have a lot of material and write in a number of different genres and styles, you'll find that at least one of your songs at any given time probably fits with a new popular trend. Making the most of it will make sure your old work is still bringing in the pennies.