That’s right, on average, 75% or more of your fan base won’t make it out to a show on your next tour. Proximity. Sold out. Cost. All factors which can keep your most loyal fans from attending your next killer show. Learn some creative ways to engage your non-attending fans.
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Entries in fan engagement (24)
Last week I explored the answers the all-to-commonly asked question of ‘why do I need a Facebook fan page if I already have a Facebook personal profile?’. And while I hope that got through to some of you who hadn’t yet made the move to a fan page, there is still another question that needs to be addressed, which is: “Once I have a fan page and have invited all of my friends to join me there, how to I continue to convert fans, and ultimately the engagement, from my personal profile (that has hundreds, if not thousands of friends engaging with me) to a fan page with little-to-no existing engagement?” This is an incredibly valid question, but in all honestly isn’t an easy one to answer (especially with FB changing their own rules on a monthly basis for how posts are seen by your friends and fans), so let’s take a look at a few simple ways that can become an important part of a long-term strategy to convert fans and engagement from your personal profile to your fan page:
As technology becomes an ever increasing part of our daily lives, the way we interact with the things we label as entertainment evolve as well. Whether substituting regular cable for Netflix or curating a coveted music playlist with Spotify, the consumer is consciously changing the way companies market to them. With the focus of most marketing initiatives shifting from web 2.0 to the era of data collection and mobile, it should be noted that most marketing initiatives and the archaic ways we try to get fans or consumers to engage with the product should follow suit. It’s no longer okay to just have a Facebook page where posts are made on a somewhat normal basis or a Twitter account where a tweet lives for thirty seconds. The shift to mobile and data collection has seen an increase in how fans want to be not only engaged with but to have the content of engagement be compelling.
I’m a big fan of the 1,000 True Fans theory. Whether or not you think that it is the key that unlocks your music career, it is always good to build an army of enthusiastic supporters who will fervently support your music. The best way for any company or new artist to grow their fan base is through referrals. The combined energy from a hardcore fan base can create some serious momentum (just look at the career of Justin Bieber or even the popularity of the book 50 Shades of Grey, both were launched by obsessed fans).
So how do you create that loyal, energetic army? Here are some tips:
For the past six weeks we’ve been busy keeping tabs on 20 different Fan Pages from different bands and brands. Through this research, we hoped to find out what drives strong and long-term engagement and why it does so. We’re still crunching all the numbers and putting together all our fancy graphs, but our fantastic intern, Katie Kernoodle, put together a case study of the most impressive artist in our study. As a teaser, we’re giving you this infographic and a break down from Katie as to why this artist was better than all the rest. Enjoy!
I’m about to leave for tour with my band . However, I thought I’d share my newest idea for boosting traffic on videos and increasing engagement with fans. Specifically, I’m talking about the videos that our band creates while we’re on tour. In the past, we’ve had a partner sponsor our tour video blogs: we would do shout-out’s, promote their brand, they would get a link with every video, etc. This tour, we’re trying something different.
On this upcoming tour, our band is going to sponsor a different non-profit organization, charity, or Kickstarter project with every video. Here’s a step-by-step to what we’re doing:
Mobile phones can be considered either an asset or a hindrance depending on whom you ask. At one point, mobile phones were only available in brick sizes reminiscent of the scenes in A Night At The Roxbury. Fast forward to the present day when mobile phones dominate nearly every facet of human behavior. They have disrupted how we communicate with one another, how we function in a work environment, and how we choose to spend our free time. You can’t walk by a crowd of people without seeing someone typing on their Blackberry or iPhone. With the amount of impact the mobile phone has had on daily life, it is only recently that this disruption has infiltrated music.
There are over 5.6 billion people in the world with cellphones. Statistically, if there are 7.1 billion people on this planet, that means three fourths of the entire human population have a mobile phone. With these kinds of figures and usage, there is a huge audience of people who have yet to be tapped for disruption and engagement. Through the use of mobile applications and successful leverage of mobile technologies, musicians would be able to reach an entirely new audience of people in a very personal way: mobile applications.
It’s always exhilarating finding stories like this that validate the lessons we so often, teach, learn, and debate here on MTT. This story in particular, highlights the power of conscientious direct-to-fan (D2F) communication on the part of Fleet Foxes’ front man, Robin Pecknold.
If Grammy awards were given to artists DIY’ing it each year, Pecknold would win the award for “Outstanding Performance In D2F Communication”. Pecknold’s proclivity for treating fans like friends recently went viral when a fan of his enthusiastically wrote the following post on reddit:
Picture this: one day, a company comes out of nowhere to introduce a service that renders Twitter obsolete. Overnight, all of those hours you spent cranking out tweets are useless. Or are they?
Let’s face it: Twitter is not so much about our follower counts, retweets, or mentions. Those are just numbers. Here’s the real deal: Twitter prepares us for the future by teaching us valuable, real-world skills.
So even if Twitter dies tomorrow, here are the five most important skills we can learn from it.
This is an adapted piece from something that I wrote on my marketing blog.
Permission Marketing Vs. Self-Entitled Marketing
The concept of “Permission Marketing” has been around for some time. Popularized by marketing guru and author Seth Godin, it essentially boils down to marketers asking for “permission” before advancing to higher levels of engagement or a purchasing process with customers. It’s often contrasted with what Godin likes to call “interruption marketing,” the practice where advertisers try and “interrupt” a person’s normal pattern through an advertising blitz (such as a billboard, tv commercial, magazine ad, etc.).
I believe that a better descriptor for interruption marketing and stronger contrast to permission marketing is the idea of “self-entitled” marketing. Self-Entitlement generally refers to the idea that one feels they deserve access, privileges, or rights without regard to others and (whether it is deserved or not). It’s narcissistic. And it’s also the approach that many brands take to spread their message.
Godin’s describes permission marketing by writing, ”Permission is like dating. You don’t start by asking for the sale at first impression. You earn the right, over time, bit by bit.” Self-entitled marketing is like asking for a long-term commitment with the first impression.
Let’s apply these concepts to the world of musicians…
Lisa Sniderman from Aoede is one of my past clients and for the past few months I had wanted to interview about her experience and growth using social networking to grow her fanbase. Well we were finally able to make it happen. I felt it was important to have a artists say all of this, sometimes hearing it from a peer carries more weight. So take a couple minutes and read about how Lisa went from essentially zero to social networking wiz and grew her fanbase over the last 1o months.
Lisa set the wayback machine to December of 2010 when we first talked. You were a couple months away from releasing your most recent album Affair With The Muse and hired me to help you with your website and online marketing efforts. Your online world at that time was fairly small; less than 1000 on your email list, a handful of Facebook fans, less than 100 Twitter followers. We talked about what you would need to do to grow your fans. How you would have to spend time engaging with everyone on Facebook and Twitter. How you would have to write articles to post on your new blog. How you had to open up and talk about yourself personally more than you talk about the new album. I remember at the time you said you were not sure you could do all of this, that you didn’t know if you had the time. But, you forged ahead.
Now not even a year later and looking back what do you think about that journey?
In the same way that there is an art and craft to songwriting, there is also a craft to writing and using language in general. And these word-related skills can play a big part in how effectively you communicate with fans - especially online.
Fans become fans because they LIKE your music, but they are naturally curious about the person behind the music and the LOVE getting to know you even more than they like your music. This is an incredibly important lesson to learn. Keep in mind that the same should be true for you in order for there to exist a genuine relationship between the two of you…be more interested in learning about and knowing your fans than SELLING to them. They will buy your music if and only if you’ve established trust and interest with them as an independent artist. Let’s face it - we’re not Taylor Swift or Beyonce who have had millions of dollars behind developing their brand that is mass-marketed to everyone. We are independent artists with limited marketing budgets and time and genuine care will go a LONG way in your social networking strategies.
We like to think of the web as one big, endless, interconnected net of relationship fibers where a tug on a single fiber causes random ripples and pulls all across the entire net; that somehow a path will emerge, narrow as it may be, where a ripple can travel from one corner of the net to the other; and that if you - the music marketer - could only simultaneously pull enough social strings, your message would be riding on a magic carpet instead of a string.
However If the ripple effect worked on the social web, then how come artists with hundreds of thousands of followers and many thousands of fans have so much trouble creating sustainable engagement where the ripples are broad enough (to live upon) or at least endless? Songs often don’t find their intended audiences, seats go unfilled, videos don’t go viral, and messages get quickly swallowed in a sea of social noise. It happens every day; it happens to almost every artist on earth; and the exceptions are rarer than you think.
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(Updated Sept 29, 2014)