Perhaps you don’t sell too many albums on iTunes, or have that many SoundCloud plays or YouTube views. But maybe, just maybe, your music is really popular in some far off corner of the digital universe you never even knew about, and all that “exposure” you’ve racked up over the years is paying off behind the scenes.Next Big Sound provides detailed online music analytics to measure the growth of bands on streaming services and social networks. It doesn’t cover everything, but it casts a wide enough net to shatter an artist’s dreams with cold, hard data. I know it did mine! <sniff> Cidney at NBS agreed to give me an artist credit for one month so that I could write this article, way back in April. Hopefully she’ll forget to downgrade my account.
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Since releasing my first digital album back in 2002, technology has played a crucial role in the distribution of the music I create. At that time, CDs were still the way folks listened to music but sales were definitely well in decline. Napster had scared the crap out of the music industry and was shut down for good. Mp3s were all the rage and there were these things called iPods that were changing the way people consumed their favorite songs and albums.
Thanks to archive.org and Creative Commons, I was able to distribute my music free of charge to my listeners without fear of the music being used for commercial purposes. I’d release a concept album that could be downloaded and enjoyed around the world. At the time, this was a novel idea for an independent artist.
Let’s face it: when it comes to sell whatever we do, most of us feel uncomfortable. That is very true for musicians, too. Virtuoso jazz violinist Christian Hows address this problem in this interview with Jonathan Fields at 25:40 as “fear of self-promotion”.
What do we do to overcome this fear?
Do you sometimes feel that your band’s draw is languishing? Are you tired of seeing the same people at your shows and want to play to a new crowd, even in your hometown?
If you’re like most musicians, you know that you absolutely can do better, that you have more fans out there than who actually show up at at the venue, and despite always receiving positive feedback, you don’t know why more people aren’t showing up. Here are some tips on building some momentum back into your tour dates so you can increase your band’s draw:
1. Find a Different Angle for The Show: It’s easier to get more people to show up if it’s your band’s first show, when you’re releasing a new album, it’s a tour kick off, or when it’s your final gig. Obviously, it’s because your fans realize those as special occasions and want to be there.
In our current society we are constantly glued to our tech devices and continuously downloading massive amounts of data through both our personal computers and mobile devices. In fact, over 488 million people use Facebook over a one month span with numbers growing everyday. With evidence like this it is no wonder that it is so important for artists to “put themselves out there”. Gone are the days of searching the Yellow Pages for a phone number, or buying a map to plot a course for vacation. These tasks and more are easily and efficiently carried out over the internet.
I got back from Australia last week after an amazing 2 week journey on the 3 Wise Monkeys Tour with Ralph Murphy & Tom Jackson. Along my journey I re-connected with artist and social media coach Rose Wintergreen, who guest tweeted my entire 6 hour presentation with gusto. She and I got to chatting after the seminar and she gave me some great insights on her experience as an artist and coaching artists in Australia.
Now that Twitter’s new music platform, #Music, has been available for public use for almost two months it is safe to make the following assessment.
It is one resounding dud.
Yes – YOU the artist manager/label owner skimming through this blog. Have a hard time keeping up with your personal social media platforms when you’re in and out of meetings all day or on the phone? I hear ya! I’ll keep this short and sweet. Here are my tips for managing your social media when you’re mega busy, you’re not alone!
The great and powerful, Wizard of Oz, presented himself as a supernatural, omniscient being. However, he was revealed to be a much different individual, operating a complex facade of smoke screens and holograms, without any real power. Musicians can put themselves in the same position as Oz did, by abusing the gap between the digital and dimensional worlds.
Musicians are expected to be everywhere these days. We’re interacting on social networks, following up on blog comments, keeping our profiles on countless music sites up to date, and checking our stats and analytics with a variety of online tools. It’s enough to make a lifelong indie yearn for a label - one with a marketing department!Most of these items don’t need to be addressed daily, but they do need to be performed on a regular basis. Tasks that have to be done on a given day, I schedule. Everything else is relegated to The Weekly Batch™ (note: not actually trademarked). I tackle the entire list as a single to-do item on Friday afternoons, when I find it hard to do much of anything else. Here’s my latest iteration:
Are you listening?
Are you really listening?
I’ve mentioned it a few times before: treat social media more like a telephone and less like a megaphone. I’ve written about it when talking about the best social media sites for bands too. However, after talking to a few artists, I realize that some might not know how or where to listen. This is important because like any business or organization, you want to know what’s being said about you and where are they saying it. You’ll also want to know how to respond.
With a rise in social TV, multi-channel engagement, and recent reports suggesting that there are more mobile phones than people in 4/6 of the World’s regions, this year will no doubt be an interesting one for social media, but how will these trends impact the music industry?
This article was co-written by Ariel Hyatt and Jon Ostrow.
“80% of marketers begin with tactics instead of goals” – eMarketer Report.
One of the most difficult things that we, and really any digital marketer faces is the ability to effectively manage the expectations of our clients.
We primarily consider clients who pay us to represent them in the realm of new media and social media. For us, it means properly identifying your goals as a client (be it an artist, author, entrepreneur or well-established brand) and often times, educating you as to why certain expectations and goals may need to be re-considered.
So many times we’ve had potential clients come to us complaining about how their previous digital PR or social media marketing campaign didn’t garner the results they had hoped for…
And you know what the first thing we ask is?
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(Updated January 13, 2016)