Dear Socially Stephanie,
I am pursuing a career in music. What is the best way to tackle social media head on so I can succeed independently? I already have a website and some fans.
Rockstar Ready in Raleigh
All right, I'm going to get straight to the point. If you want to be a celebrity, you have to start thinking like one. Ok, ok. Don't get blinded by the paparazzi flashes just yet. First, we have some work to do.
Now step out of your shoes and into say, One Direction's shoes. I'll let you choose which member you prefer. (If it were me, I'd go with Niall. But hey, I don't want to influence you.)
So, what does his online presence look like? Adoring fans. Check. Behind-the-scenes access into his life? Check.
You see, the key to a celebrity's success is the ability they have to create and keep raving, screaming fans. This is what we need to recreate for you. The music industry is a tough world -- I know, I used to work at Atlantic Records. But with an asset like a loyal fanbase and an email list to prove it, you are going to be one step ahead of the game.
So how do we go about connecting with and creating fans? The first step is to give them what they want. And that in most cases is really great music. But, you already have that. So now, it's about getting your music out there while engaging them with who you are.
Let's start with your website. It's your online home and your goal is to collect as many interested followers as possible. This is how you are going to do that. Offer a free exclusive song that can't be found anywhere except on your website. But the kicker is that they have to sign up for your newsletter. You see when you give people things for free, people feel the need to reciprocate. It's human instinct. And you need to tap into that.
Now that you have your "lead magnet" in place, it's time to start getting your name out there and pushing traffic back to your site. This is where social and sharing meet. And it's powerful!
Of course you should be on Facebook and Twitter. But let's think beyond the box. How can you deliver content and give fans a bit of you in a new way? Vine! Musicians kill it on Vine. I've seen it time and again. Because it's only 6 seconds you get the exclusivity and teaser function all in one. Create a Vine video of you recording bits and pieces of your songs. You can even do some Vine collaborations with some Vine celebrities to really get it out there. But in order to get popular on the network you are going to have to be consistent.
Next stop is SoundCloud, an audio sharing social network for musicians and other sound producers. Like all social networks, it is a community and you are going to need to do some networking to get your sounds around. Comment on other musicians songs and start building a relationship with them. But most importantly you need to connect with other fans.
Lastly, I want you to bring the live performance online and the best place to do that is Google+. Do a hangout where you feature a few of your songs and give your fans the feeling of a live concert right there in their bedroom. It's all about accessibility. And the more accessible you are, the closer your fans will feel to you. The closer they feel, the more they'll want to bring in their friends to share in the experience. Plus, the concert will live forever on Youtube with a single click of a button.
Oh, and one last tip. Make sure all of your written content is optimized with the right keywords and hashtags. This will help you get found.
Remember, often online it's not what we say or do, it's the way we make others feel. So go ahead and woo them, because you better believe they will remember and they will be back for more.
Get groovy with it!
Do you have a question for Socially Stephanie?
Please email [email protected] and let Stephanie help you solve your social quandaries, queries, and boondoggles. (Questions may be edited for length and clarity.)
Illustration by Jesse Wells