So you have Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Foursquare, Instagram… now what do you do? To help you here are the most common errors that artists make on social media, and how to fix them:
- Not providing basic information:
You have all your pages, videos, pictures and updates added, but where’s the basic info? Your fans want to feel like they know everything about you, not just what you do. Remember to include full names of all members, what instrument you play, where you come from, and when you started. If you haven’t got the simplest of information, it will keep your fans at a distance- not good for holding down a fan base!
- Not creating connections:
You need to connect with your fans. If you don’t you run the risk of new fans joining, and of maintaining your following. People want to feel like you care about them – build a community around you and your fans. Make sure they feel special, by creating a community where fans can speak to you and each other, they feel closer to you, involved in everything concerned with you. You can either simply do it via a discussion on Facebook or perhaps live webchats or if you want to make it extra special, have a look at what McFly did with SuperCity… Not having a relationship with your fans is a massive mistake; they’re the ones who will make or break you.
- Not writing about yourselves:
You’re in a band! Its interesting! Don’t just simply write about upcoming gigs and post links to buy new tracks. For the same reason as giving your fans your basic information, they want to feel like they’re part of something – so let them know what you’ve been up to, in the studio, on tour, or just in general. Link up your instagram and post arty cool photos of you in the studio’s or simply just a few knobs and buttons! Another great way to do this is a blog. It is just as essential as a Facebook or twitter account for keeping fans up-to-date.
- Poor content:
So your on the most popular social media sites, you even have a blog or your own website, but when the fans log on, there’s nothing to see other than some info you posted months ago about a gig in Scotland. Social Media is about being social… it needs to be a regular thing, posting, linking, you need to be in a conversation with your fans! If a potential fan goes to your blog and it still just has the welcome message, they aren’t going to return. Make sure ALL your sites are contributed to on a regular bases.
- Not replying quickly:
If you don’t reply, you will lose fans, it is as simple as that. The longer you leave it, the longer you alienate people and consequently lose fans. That means tweets, comments, posts all need to be replied too! There should be a permanent conversation between you and your fans. Create conversations with your fans, invite participation and then hold up your end of the bargain. Also, don’t underestimate the power of the ‘@’ tweet and following back on Twitter, it might seem like a lot of effort but it’s so worth it.
- Not having a consistent online persona:
Your band is a brand. You probably hate that, but it’s true. You are selling yourself; you need to figure out who you are and what you’re about and stick to it. If you don’t have an easily identifiable image, your fans will get confused and it will give them a reason to stray. You need to know your niche market and target them, then build on it from there.
- Being scared of other bands:
There are bands similar to yours out there, you might not want to believe it but there are so, seeing them as just competition isn’t going to help! Their fans like them for a reason, and if your sound is similar, then chances are they’ll like your stuff too. If you identify yourself with other bands, even go as far as promoting them, they are probably going to return the favour! This means that your music will be exposed to a wider group of people, making chances of getting that number one or sold out tour greater!
- Not linking:
Link your sites all up! If you don’t have links to all you sites, on every site, then you’re making it too hard for your fans. Links stand out (underlined, different colour) and if they are there people will click on them and be redirected to more of you. That will add up to more followers on twitter, more fans on Facebook and, hopefully, more fans.
- Not tracking social media success:
If you don’t look analytically at how you’re doing online, then you’ll never know what you’re doing well – and you won’t learn from your mistakes. There are loads of online tools out there (usually quite cheap or even free) and it will give you an insight into how big your online presence actually is, and how far you could reach.
- Not capturing fans data:
Even if you follow all the above – if you can’t reach your fans through a simply email then you’re really limiting your fan base.
An email grabber (like the one Zimbalam has!) is a perfect way to do this. Plus, you can have one on all of your sites – so you can always stay connected with the people that matter – the fans.
If you think I have missed anything or if you have an idea of what you want to know more about and learn get in touch!
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