I've added another new category to the blog, "Marketing Your Music Online". I'll kick off the first post in this category with a discussion of Flash technology to server audio from a web site.
Flash is such a fantastic tool for presenting audio and video on the web. Why? Well because the flash plug-in is pretty much standard issue on all internet enabled computers which means your audience will spend more time listening to your tracks and not messing with downloads and media players. As a side note, Flash is the technology used by www.youtube.com to stream video.
I'm fluent in flash programming, so I used it to create a custom audio player to promote a track from the an audio book project of mine www.wwiiaviator.com. I embed the actual player in this blog so give it a try.
I used an image of a vintage WWII Radio, then edited the image to place display surfaces for my player controls. I then created some embossed text and wings to brand the player. The player streams audio so even on a slow connection, users will hear the audio before it has finished downloading the entire file to their system. The entire player application is 21k!!!
Now I realize you might not be a Flash programmer, so below is a list of Do-it-yourself audio players. To use these you'll need to know how to upload files to your web server, as well as need to have enough web skills to place a chunk of html into an existing page.
CoffeeCup Software's Web Jukebox is the easiest way to go. It has a wizard like interface that allows you to take mp3's and publish them so fans can listen to them on your Website. It comes with over 20 player designs. The program has a built-in tool that automates file uploads to your web server, and gives you the html code you need to plug into your web page. To learn more and check out a free trial, go here - Coffee Cup Free Trials, click the "Products & Downloads" Link, then scroll down to "CoffeCup Web Jukebox" link.
A more advanced player is the Wimpy player. Don't let the name fool you, this player has many advanced features like; playlists from folders on you servers, jukebox audio from podcast feeds custom skinning, eCommerce integration and more. This player is more complex and more difficult to implement, but worth a look if you are a technically savvy with web sites. To learn more and check out a free trial, go here - Wimpy Player Website