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« 4 Steps To A New Music Business | Main | Why I Think Video LPs Are A Good Idea »
Wednesday
Feb022011

Are You Wishing Your Fans A Happy Birthday?

I love this tip so much… Marcio Teixeira made a very simple suggestion for my 2000 Things article that fit perfectly with something else I was working on, wish your fans a Happy Birthday. How many are doing this? I have to say not many.

I don’t remember getting a birthday greeting from any band recently.

We all love it when someone recognizes our birthday. I am also always impressed when every year Southwest Airlines sends me a birthday card. No other business does that. A very simple action that always makes me think just how much I like Southwest Airlines. You need to do the same with every one of your fans. I already hear the comments… how!

We have 1000s of fans I can’t write every one of them personally. Here are two tips:.

1. As part of your sites user registration ask for date of birth. Then get yourself a developer to write a simple script that every day looks for birthdays that day and sends out a email message. You should have a little admin that allows you to change the birthday message as often as you like. Don’t send the same message out for months. In that message you could even include maybe a discount on a purchase in your store, or maybe a link to download a special mp3 file. I keep saying this, but trust me… your fans will love it that you thought enough to send them a message.

2. I REALLY like this idea… on Facebook create a Facebook ad campaign. When you are building the ad you can set up who you want to target, meaning who in Facebook do you want to see the ad. Set it up to target only users who are connected to your Facebook Page AND on their birthday. That targeting means only fans who Like your Page and on their birthday will see the ad. Yep, Facebook lets you only display a ad on someone’s birthday. Create the ad with a short personal birthday wish and link it back to a special birthday page on your website where they can get a discount or a free download. This is only going to work if you have enough fans on your page. If you have 50 fans Facebook is going to say the target audience is too small. Once you have built up a nice fan base on Facebook try this out. Yeah you will have to spend a little money on the ads… but it is a great investment to really win over your fans.

Reader Comments (11)

What I use is this feature on my phone which notifies me of everyone's Facebook b days. I send personal messages everyday. Tedious work but effective.

February 2 | Unregistered Commentersyzmik

Are you serious?

Automated birthday greetings are about the lowest form of communication I can think of. How bland and sad would a band have to be that this sort of tackiness would raise your estimation of them?

ps on the internet everyone has the same birthday anyway.

February 2 | Unregistered Commenterfelix

Ok on second thought the Facebook one could be quite cool if handled well.

But please, forget about the birthday emails.

February 2 | Unregistered Commenterfelix

I always take the time to wish my fans on MySpace, a happy birthday and its not automated, its me.

February 3 | Unregistered CommenterMark C Stafford

I never do any automated birthday greetings, but I do take the time to sing a personalized "Happy Birthday" for a few of my fans. That way, it is always a surprise and a delight :)

All the best,
- Ashe

February 3 | Unregistered CommenterAshelyn Summers

If you want to do each birthday greeting by hand even better, but as a fan base grows that could become impossible to maintain. If you change up your greetings weekly or monthly you can keep things very fresh. The main point is, the greeting is not expected. Of all the band websites I have signed up for over the years I seriously can't recall even one who sent me a greeting. Even the sites where I paid to join a fan club. Even though I know the Southwest card is not done personally it still is much more than everyone else does, which is nothing. As little effort as some might think it is, it is a nice touch.

February 6 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Brandvold

How about sending every fan a gift? With all the money we make thanks to them, we could at least send them gifts and lets not forget the really important music, always for free.

February 7 | Unregistered CommenterBob

If undertaken tastefully this is a fantastic tool and will only serve to strengthen your fan base

February 8 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Chang

Brilliant! Borrowing "customer engagement" tactics that state farm insurance agents have been using for half a century. That is really some cutting edge stuff.

"I am also always impressed when every year Southwest Airlines sends me a birthday card. No other business does that."

This is just sad. Anyone who doesn't realize how insincere it is when a business sends you a birthday card (or who thinks Southwest is the only business who does it) should be automatically disqualified from giving marketing advice.

November 7 | Unregistered CommenterWills

Willis,

Is everything you do in your career 100% original?

Maybe you need to stop and think for a moment... a musician is a person and a birthday greeting to a fan is person to person. I promise you it is something a fan would love to get. Fans just want recognition from their favorite artist.

November 7 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Brandvold

I'm not too great about remembering birthdays so I use birthdayFB. It let's you pre-schedule happy birthday fb wall posts. http://bityhdayfb.com

February 8 | Unregistered CommenterSean Morgan

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