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« The Record Industry Innovation Prize 2009 | Main | It's kind of not ABOUT you »

Go Straight to the Fan!


A recent blog post by Bob Lefsetz echoes the direct “focus on fans” mantra I’ve been preaching for years. Here’s an excerpt that addresses the age-old need artists have to “get the word out there”:

“Realize the focus should not be on the media, but the fan. Just like the Internet rid the music business of the need to manufacture and ship, this same Net allows an act to forgo interacting with the media, to go straight to the fan. You must go straight to the fan.”

Here’s another gem I highly endorse:

“A Website is no longer just a repository of information, it’s the front door to your fan club. You may be a musician, but second to that, you’re running a club. You have to spread the word on your music, you have to create demand for your tour.”

That’s right. You’re no longer simply an artist. As Andrew pointed out so well here, you’re also a community builder, a party planner, and a social director all rolled into one.


P.S. I’m not suggesting you should ignore the media. The real lesson here is that all of your marketing efforts should be for the sole purpose of attracting fans and building relationships with them.


Reader Comments (5)

"The real lesson here is that all of your marketing efforts should be for the sole purpose of attracting fans and building relationships with them."

I really like this kind of thinking. It helps relieve the anxiety that comes with such a saturated music making environment.

If you build these relationships with the people who take an interest or liking to your music...Then these people are not just fans or consumers, they become "Promoters" of what you do.

That is always good.

May 23 | Unregistered CommenterMilton

It's a concept many musicians are having a hard time grasping. Yes you have to spend your time creating your music, but in order to be successful and make a career out of it, you have to have that interaction with the fans. Luckily things like blogging and social networking have made it easy and affordable to accomplish this, so there's no excuse why a musician shouldn't be able to build that community. The only thing holding a musician back these days is their own laziness!

May 24 | Unregistered Commentereric hebert

Stated another way, the artist no longer "beholden" to the media. The artist is part of the media. Each website is a gateway to the public. Weblogs teach us that our understanding of print media must change. Artist promotion is just another extension of this change.

May 26 | Unregistered Commentergurdonark

Being part of the new indie media I believe that the role of media, at least at this level, is to verbalize fandom, affirm it, and help artists attract more fans. When I set out to write something (or produce a podcast or whatever) the context is "what can I do to connect the artist/song/album with the fans." One thing print including online magazines have to understand is that they are a little part of a big picture, you have to connect..."

June 1 | Unregistered CommenterShannon

I love this type of thinking.

Embrace the internet.
Be cost efficient.
Be creative not only in music but with your Merch offering (you can go past T-Shirts).
Communicate with your fans.
Respect them.
Create VALUE for them.

Great post Bob.

The New Rockstar Philosophy

June 4 | Unregistered CommenterHoover

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