As well as editing Fatea Magazine, curating the Fatea Showcase Session Downloads and producing Along The Tracks for Stevie here at Blues & Roots Radio, I occasionally get asked to do workshops at festivals and events, mainly aimed at newer bands and solo artists trying to get themselves established, so I thought it might be a good idea to take you through a few of the ideas from that.
I mentioned in my first blog, “After your music, the website and associated applications will become the most important asset an act owns”, I’ve repeated it here for a reason because it is true. If you only have one piece of internet real estate, make it a website.
It’s not as important to own the underlying infrastructure, servers etc, but own the domain and treat it like gold. Your website is your window onto the world so it needs to be clear and kept clean and, particularly important if you are selling music and merch through it, it needs to be kept safe and yes you should be selling music and merch through it.
The role of your social media is to drive people that you interest in your music to your website, not Apple, not Spotify, your website. These are the people that you need to turn into your fans and followers, not Apple, Amazon, Spotify customer, your fans, followers and customers.
By way of example you send a tweet that you have a new track on Spotify, person clicks on tweet, likes it, stays on Spotify, likes the next track, by someone else and there you have your fraction of a cent.
Send out a tweet that you have a new track and tour with the link to your website and the person can now hear the track, checkout dates you may be in their area, see you’ve got t-shirts for sale, an album and a video and you are on the road to turning them into your fans and your customers. I’ll hold my hand up here and say, there is a possibility that less people will click on the link to your website than might have clicked on the link to Amazon, Apple etc, but here’s the key…Those that do will already be more committed to your music because they have already made a commitment directly to you.
The quality of the people that engage with you through your website will be higher than those that you only interact with through social media because they have already reached out to you and you need to make sure they enjoy the experience by keeping your website, clean and fresh, focused and relevant, you owe it to them. Get interactive with them, regularly update your news, let them know what you’re doing, ideally get them to sign up to a mailing list, turn them from being followers into fans, reward them for being so. Incentives are nothing new The Beatles used to give their fan club a free Christmas single, but remember to be genuine.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with building followers across your social media , in fact I would absolutely encourage it. By its very nature, it’s social you, have aways of interaction with a genuinely global audience on a personal level that could only be dreamed of ten years ago. Make it a proper two way process, engage with your followers, have conversations, ask opinions, let them know when one of your tracks is getting played on Blues & Roots or the album that you’ve released has been reviewed in Fatea and link to them, but remember the role of social media is to drive people to your website, to become your audience.
Quality of audience is more important than quantity, get both and the world really is your oyster. I hope this has been useful to you, happy to respond to your thoughts and comments.
Talking of thoughts and comments since we last talked there’s been a new Fatea Showcase Session. The new 18 track download, “Changing” is available from www.fatea-showcase-sessions.co.uk and from there you can link to the artists’ websites.