NMS Intensives: Social Media & Mobilizing Your Fans
The music business is currently saturated with aspiring artists and "rising stars", so how can one of them push through the rest and get noticed?
By Varsha Srivastava [09-01-2012]
Now more than ever, artists need a way to stand out. Like the weasel, they need to POP! The music business is currently saturated with aspiring artists and potentially rising stars, so how can one of them push through the rest and get noticed? Some of the New Music Seminar Intensives held in June attempted to help artists tackle that Gordian Knot.
CEO of Discmakers & CD Baby, Tony van Veen, shared with attendees the "9 Strategies To Maximize Artist Revenues in the Age of Facebook and Spotify."
Step 1: Be where the people are. Well of course, if you don't play gigs or put yourself out in the social media world, no one will know about you!
Step 2: Build your own list. These are people who will be buying your music, so get their information and offer them incentives.
Step 3: Retain mindshare. DO NOT let your audience forget about you; be compelling, and communicate often.
Step 4: Sell yourself. Think of your fans as customers and make them see your worth.
Step 5: Focus on iTunes. The fans are on iTunes, which means the artist must take advantage.
Step 6: Build deep product catalog. One thing that can go on this catalogue is merchandise; more products to sell = more revenue.
Step 7: Embrace "free." In the words of Tony van Veen, "Your enemy is not piracy, your enemy is anonymity."
Step 8: Tell customers what to do. If no one is aware of what to do, how will they do it? And the thing is, if you tell people to go on your website, or buy your CD, some will actually do it. Who knew?
Step 9: Offer specials and incentives. Which person on the planet doesn't love a good deal? Make a compelling offer, and don't be afraid to try new things. I think that just about covers all the bases for maximizing artist revenues in the modern world. No one's saying it'll be quick and easy, but patience is a virtue my friends.
Ourstage.com CEO Ben Campbell expressed his words of wisdom in a segment called: "Empower Your Tribe: How to Mobilize Your Fans for Opportunity and Exposure." I think it's safe to say that an artist is nothing without his/her fans. Fans are to artists as engines are to cars. Campbell explained that it is imperative for an artist to be fully committed to the journey ahead before taking any further steps. Once committed, start mobilizing your fans.
Start by building a devoted tribe who cares about you, and create and share custom content with them. Play gigs, make connections, and share you activity on social media sites. Social media has been a recurring theme in this year's NMS, and it's value really cannot be stressed enough. Understanding and properly implementing social media and online tools can bring an artist from the Earth's core to Orion's Belt. Just like Tony van Veen, Campbell preached the importance of engaging with and giving incentives to your fans. Give them a call to action to come to a show or visit a website. The most important point that Campbell stressed was to "totally share yourself;" you have to live it.
Campbell concluded by informing the audience about the 2012 launch of the new OurStage Pro Artist platform, where artists who get fans to stream music through ourstage.com will get a share of the company's revenue. In addition, large brands who partner with OurStage will invest in artists and allow them to showcase in their brand promotions. If you're interested in getting yourself in the public eye, this is worth checking out. And who knows, maybe you'll be the next big thing.
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