Social media, on principle, exists to give your fans and followers greater insight to who you are offstage and outside the studio. Many artists, however, are reluctant to weigh down their feeds with mundane check-ins and some are nervous about posting personal photos. For musicians on Instagram, there’s a popular new feature that solves all these challenges.
If you break live streaming down into its core components – a performer, an audience, and a camera in between them – the fast-growing method of communication looks an awful lot like a source of entertainment. Why else would 100 million people go online every month to watch someone play a video game? But I’m here to tell musicians looking to find success through live streaming that it’s NOT all about entertainment.
Gatekeepers – they’re the ones who decide whether or not your music is worthy enough to earn massive exposure. They’re the bloggers, the radio DJs, the music supervisors. The ones who decide which artists get their songs heard. And they’re the people that most musicians can’t seem to figure out.
Social media for musicians needs to be about more than just tour dates and other pertinent info. A lot of people want to feel closer to the music they love and the people who make it, and your Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and all the rest should reflect that. Give the people what they want: A more personal connection.
Clever merch can do marvels for a band, and we’re not talking just about super-cool T-shirts and well-designed album art. Think of your shop selection—online or IRL—as having the same possibilities of any other store. You’ve got the freedom to offer almost anything you want, and if you’re creative enough in your selection, your sales will surely get a boost. Those special items can help grow your fanbase, too.
On a recent tour, I played a frantically put together house show that was a last ditch effort in saving multiple cancelled shows. Seeing as my show was one of those that was cancelled, it was a complete relief to be able to play and I met some awesome people I’d only heard of in name before. One of the bands from a different tour came to mind when I started preparing this article about diversifying your music. The reason is, their sound was completely bland. They were by far the most solid, energetic, and talented band at the show. But they had little to no originality. I had absolutely no desire after seeing them to go listen to their music, because I’d heard it before from different artists.
ReverbNation CONNECT artist manager (and former booking agent with The Windish Agency) Sharyn Goldyn lays out the ways that emerging artists can make the most out of their first tours. Read on for advice that will make your next (or first) tour a success.
What is the best way to begin planning a tour? What elements does a band need to consider?
It really depends on how much is going on with the artist and how much money they have to spend. Everyone has to start somewhere but to get the most out of your time on the road, it’s helpful for there to be some sort of story behind the artist: a new release, a few good reviews on blogs, a decent social media following, some sort of buzz like significant streams on Spotify, etc.