One of my New Years resolutions was to do a bit more blogging and provide the music and marketing communities with some cool tips in navigating the web and managing your street campaigns.
I have been in the marketing field for over 10 years now and running FanManager for 6 years, so I wanted to post some of my observations and let you know what has worked and what hasn’t.
The entry below will cover everything you need to know about online street teaming in this new digital era. Although physical street teams are still important and relevant for many hard touring bands, online street teaming is becoming much more prevalent.
HERE IS WHY…
1) Ease of Reaching Fans. It has never become so easy to reach tens of thousands of people in just a few minutes. In today’s ADD culture, people want instant bite sized bits of information. People are tuning out billboards and traditional advertising and are much more willing to listen to a recommendation of a new track, video, or concert from a friend. This is why platforms like Twitter and Facebook are so important today.
2) The Green Movement. People are becoming “Greener” and online marketing leaves absolutely no carbon footprint. There is nothing more disheartening than seeing handbills and other marketing materials littering a venue, plus there can be fines for blatant disregard of public property.
3) The Power of Fans. The technology is developing at such a rapid pace and sharing content is a seamless process now. The power of fans to create viral sensations through word of mouth is unparalleled and traditional media is struggling to keep up with the change. The power is back in the hands of the passionate fans out there.
Here are our tips on how to get this done right…
CREATE YOUR ONLINE STREET TEAM
- Create a FUN name for your team so more fans are encouraged to join. Ex: “Shapeshifters” for the ALO Street Team and “Flight Crew” for the Moonalice Street Team.
- Blast out to your email list to look for members
- Blast out to your social networks to look for members
- Have a sign up box or banner that directs to a street team landing page on your website, Myspace, blog and other social networks
- If your numbers are low, put a “refer a friend” program in place where each new person recruited gets the original street team member rewards
WHAT YOU WILL NEED FOR YOUR ONLINE STREET TEAM
- Animated banners. As many as possible. Typical sizes are 300x300, 368x100, 728x90
- Ability for fans to grab HTML code, code for forums, and easy Facebook “share” and Twitter “tweet this” Buttons.
- Widgets for Collecting emails (TopSpin), Tours, Album Releases (countdown clocks are very cool!), or overall mini website types of Widgets.
- ReverbNation is a great place to make Widgets for FREE and track your hits!
- HD Live Videos and Music Videos on YouTube or Vimeo that can be easily spread around and embedded into blogs, web sites and HTML friendly communities.
- Create a digital landing page for your street team if you can so they have an “asset depot” of sorts.
- Avatars, Wallpaper & AIM Icons.
- Admats promoting an album, specific show, or tour.
WHAT YOUR ONLINE STREET TEAM SHOULD DO
- Host animated banners and widgets on their own Social Networking pages/blogs and other profiles which click through back to the band’s Web site, fan club ticket pages, or other purchase links.
- Spread the word about your band, tour, event, and album on other like-minded message boards, in chat rooms, local music lists, and other forums.
- Comment on blogs writing about your band or like-minded artists.
- “Like” items across the web so it shows up in your Facebook news feed
- Invite people to Facebook events and also to Facebook band pages with the “Suggest to Friends” button.
- Tweet and Re-Tweet message on Twitter.
- “Digg” News Articles
- Tag photos on Flickr
- Share YouTube/Vimeo Videos, on Social Networks, Forums, and Groups. Comment on Videos
- Email friends admats and forward other show advertisements
- Recommend music on sites like iTunes Ping, iLike, Last.FM, Pandora, Blip.FM, etc.
- Post show advertisements on Craigslist, Event Brite, etc.
- Write favorable reviews of your music on Amazon, I-tunes, and other E-commerce sites.
HOW TO MANAGE YOUR ONLINE STREET TEAM
- Send out missions once a week that focus on different areas of the internet. Week 1 can be Facebook missions. Week 2 can be Twitter missions. Week 3 can be forum missions, etc.
- Require screen shots with examples of online work for points and other rewards.
- Make easy to obtain goals for the team like “reach 5000 members” or “comment on 5 blogs.” Make sure missions take the team no more than 20 minutes per week.
- MOST IMPORTANTLY : BE NICE! Remember that these are VOLUNTEERS, not slaves. Shower each street team member with kindness and you will see amazing results. Make sure they know that the harder they work, the more they will get in return.
- Thank everyone for their hard work at the end of the tour or campaign so they want to come back and help again!
HOW TO REWARD YOUR DIGITAL STREET TEAM
- Online street team rewards can range from simple things such as free down loads and tickets to shows to huge rewards for big bands like an iPod loaded with a band’s music, VIP Fly Away for 2 people to a show, signed Guitar or Box Sets.
- People that REALLY go above and beyond should be invited to band sound checks and backstage to meet the band.
- Anyone who does “some” work but not enough for a free ticket should at least get a free download or CD so they feel like their work was worth something.
- Make 100% SURE that no names are left off a guest list and double check with your tour manager to make sure no ball is dropped at a venue. Nothing is more frustrating to a hard working street team member than being left off of a guest list after they did all of that hard work!
- Online campaigns work best as competitions for the most points. Top 10 point winners get the biggest rewards
Erik Koral is the President/CEO/Founder of FanManager, a full service digital marketing firm in Los Angeles. The company specializes in street team management, social media campaigns, viral marketing campaigns, and creative services. Some clients include Depeche Mode, Shakira, Infected Mushroom, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, Umphrey’s McGee, The Disco Biscuits, Harmony Festival, and many others. Please Contact FanManager if you want a proposal or pricing to run your digital campaigns in 2011.