7 Google Apps that All Musicians Need To Know About

1-google-art2

Google, in my humble opinion, is the most amazing invention since anything else I can really think of. And Google is not just a big search engine, although it would still be awesome if that’s all it did.

Google has been offering a suite of incredibly powerful tools for years; way before ‘in the clouds’ become the next big thing for companies like Apple and Microsoft. And to make it even better, Google has recently created a platform for musicians that offers even further tools that will help independent musicians all over the world to thrive in the digital world called ‘Google Apps‘.

Google is, quite simply, a portal that truly puts all of the worlds electronic information at your fingertips – there’s a good reason why the word “Google” has become synonymous with searching online.

Here are 7 Google Apps designed to help you through all of Google’s awesomeness and use it to your benefit.

1. Google Alerts
Have you ever spent hours trying to track down articles on a certain subject, topic or even about your band / your brand? With Google Alerts, whatever words you select will be searched by Google and emails will be delivered to in your in-box.

To Setup A Google Alert

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 1.39.59 PM

  1. Visit http://www.google.com/alerts
  2. Choose your search terms.
    1. You may include wildcard characters (*) to expand the search to find words containing the search terms, i.e. “fi*” will return results for “fish,” as well as “ficus”
    2. Use quotation marks ( Cyber PR ) to search for only the exact words in the search, in the exact order entered
  3. Choose the type of alert you would like.
  4. Select the frequency of alert emails.(Daily works best)
  5. Enter the email to which you would like the alerts emailed

2. Google Blog Search
This is basically a filter for only searching blogs; and with 270 million blogs out there, on top of all the websites, this is a great filter for all the noise. This is also a great place to track your band on blogs. To search on Google’s Blog search, go to this link: http://blogsearch.google.com/

3. Gmail
If you still have an AOL or hotmail address, you’re in trouble. Gmail just may be the best e-mail program/website on the planet. Many bloggers and new media makers use Gmail and it shows you’re in the know, so get signed up.

Google e-mail is so wonderful because it is searchable by topic or by word, and Google provides you with a huge amount of storage space.

Using Gmail as your default mail host, you can set up an URL and add GoDaddy for 7.95, then point it to the server and voila! You have a customized e-mail addresses for free.

4. Google Drive
Google Drive (formerly Google docs) is, in essence, the entire Microsoft Office suite offered to you for free, is synced completely online so you can access it from anywhere without taking up any storage space on your computer, and can be shared with anyone who has a Google account. This is an incredibly helpful tool for you and your team to take advantage of to keep track of lyrics, merchandise, accounting, and anything else you would otherwise use Word or Excel for.

5. Google Music Artist Hub
Google recently introduced their first digital music store called Google Music, and unlike iTunes and Amazon, Google has made Google Music incredibly easy for you to get your music listed for sale by creating the Google Music Artist Hub, a platform for you to be able to list, organize and manage all of your music being sold in their store. And to make it even better, having your music for sale in the Google Music store also means that you can sell your music though Youtube as well!

All you need to do to get on Google Music is to register for an Artist Hub account, which requires a one-time, $25 fee, and they will walk you through how to get your music published!

6. Google Calendar
Google Calendar is a highly integrated, yet very simple calendar application that is synced to your Google account so it can be accessed form anywhere you can access the internet. The best reason for you to be using Google Calendar is that multiple users can sync to the same calendar, which means it is a free solution for you, your band, and your team to be on the same page for any upcoming events or deadlines that you may have.

7. Google+
Google introduced Google+ in 2011, and the Facebook meets Twitter design and functionality made it the latest and greatest social networking platform to enter the competitive market. What makes Google+ so important for you is that, because it is a Google owned and operated platform, it ranks very highly in Google searches, helping you with your search engine optimization.

Google+ is so deep that we dedicated an entire Musician’s Guide article to the platform, covering many of the important features you’ll need to know about!

Click to continue...

9 Comments

6 Ways to Make Sure You Don’t Waste Your Time on YouTube

bigstock-Filming-2232539

Recently, we connected with Ryan Carey regarding his experience with YouTube and he was gracious enough to give us this guest blog post sharing his advice.

Ryan originally started this post by saying he is no expert…

We beg to differ.

Ryan Carey (@ryanwcarey) worked at YouTube for 5 years and is now a freelance video strategist and camera presence coach based in San Francisco and Brooklyn.

Here are Ryan’s 6 pieces of advice for any of you working on building a personal brand through video:

1. Your videos are not going to go ‘viral’

I’m sorry. The news had to be broken. The closest word in our English language to ‘viral’ is miracle. Now that our dreams have been crushed, it’s time we begin putting in work to be serious (and taken seriously) with video.

2. Take time building a home

This is the difference between straw and brick. Do you have a YouTube ‘account’ (it’s called a channel)? Did you sign up and never put anything more into it? If yes, you have a YouTube house made of straw. One needs to take time setting up a channel properly, learn basic editing and be able to offer consistent polished content. This is what I call YouTube muscle – which means investing some sweat in building the brick foundation. Once complete, maintenance is lowered (still very relevant) and you can focus more on your content.

3. If it’s not fun, you’re doing it wrong

As a culture, we have gone from sitting in front of the TV watching a total of 5 channels to having power at our fingertips to create any style of show we want. We can assume the role of stars and no one has to approve it or give us a deal. If someone had come 30 years ago and said we’d someday be able to make our own shows, we’d all be excited. That is fun.

4. We are all making shows

This might be your first season. How many episodes will you make? How long will they be? What’s yours about? How often will you release them? Reading this may seem overwhelming, but it’s not. It’s just work that goes into building the muscle to make your personal brand smoother on video.

5. Polish

This is the difference between showing up to a black tie affair in jeans versus a tuxedo. Polish means a concise video, an accurate description, your own intro/outro and smooth transitions every single time. It also means asking yourself if the audience will stay engaged with what you’ve made. If you answer no, tighten it up and tuck in your shirt.

6. Don’t waste time

Both yours and the audience’s. Everyone knows attention spans are at an all time low. YouTube is no different. If your video doesn’t pop until 25 seconds in, you may lose half the viewers. If there is a 3 second pause of you thinking on camera about what you’re going to say, that’s a risk of releasing the audience member who could easily become a lifetime fan loyal to your personal brand. Or at the very least a subscriber.

Be fast. Be loud. Be confident.

You’re not a sitcom nor a reality show. You get to choose who you are on camera, and whoever you choose, ensure it’s professional.

Click to continue...

1 Comment

Facebook Update Watch 2014: What You Need to Know About Facebook’s New Pages Layout

Facebook Sign

Facebook is at it once again in what is likely to throw all to many people into a frenzy of confusion. So brace yourselves…

Facebook is updating the layout to Pages! (queue the b-movie horror soundtrack)

The changes are not huge, though there are a few things that are important for you to note so we thought we’d compile them here for you in one place:

Pages to Watch

In the last few months, Facebook rolled out a new addition to the Pages Insights section for some page admins, allowing them to track up to 5 competing pages so that they can be compared through analytics.

851593_1396403973963236_401469829_n

With the rollout of the new Facebook Pages layout, Facebook is now opening up this feature to all page admins. This tool can be particularly useful when comparing yourself to local competition as you’ll be able to track their increase/ decrease in growth, as well as the strength of the engagement on their page. The latter feature presents a great opportunity to follow the pages of other musicians you look to for content inspiration to see what is working / not working for them, to better develop your own content based on their ideas.

Hidden Custom Tabs

This… is a pain.

There is no doubt that Facebook has made it increasingly difficult for the content from your page to actually be seen, let alone engaged with. One of the remaining beacons of light with Facebook Pages was the ability to customize tabs so that as new traffic came to your page, you could choose how to engage (or funnel) your fans into longer-lasting opportunities, such as newsletter sign ups, tours, etc.

Well with the rollout of the new Facebook Pages layout, you can (sort of) kiss this goodbye.

new-page-tab-location

The new layout has stripped the big (and customizable) tab buttons off the homepage, opting to instead file these custom tabs as sub-tabs under the new ‘More’ tab. While it’s nice to know that you will still have the opportunity to offer these customized calls to action, it is more than likely that they will go completely overlooked as Facebook is simply adding yet another step for people to take before they can actually see and engage with your content (the opposite of effective website navigation).

One Column vs. Two Column View

Honestly, this shouldn’t have much effect on your content as far as we can tell. The streamlining of your content from two columns into one may make your content easier to consume and/ or engage with as it will all be displayed in one consistent fashion, but that is a big may that has yet to be seen and/ or proven. Only time will tell how this effects the overall structure, functionality, and engagement of your Facebook Pages.

Click to continue...

0 Comments

Top 10 Cyber PR Clients of Spring 2014

This is one winter I am thoroughly glad to say goodbye to! It’s just now starting to feel like spring (sort of).

To celebrate the new season, today we shine the spotlight on the top 10 Cyber PR® clients of Spring 2014. With the level of talent we represent, this is never an easy decision… However we’ve compiled a list of 10 clients that have received the most attention from bloggers, podcasters and internet radio stations.

Congratulations go to each of the artists below on their successes, and a HUGE thank you to all of the media makers who have supported (and continue to support!) us and our artists as well.

- Ariel and Team Cyber PR®

Festivals:

6fe924a45f4e03a48aa3a720652aa6eb-2FEST300 – Founded by Chip Conley, head of Global Hospitality for Airbnb , and his co-founder Art Gimbel, creator of popular festival app World Festival Guide, FEST300.com is the premiere source for personalized festival discovery around the world. Their team of seasoned travel & festival experts present the world’s best festivals through honest reviews and vivid imagery depicting the festivals, their atmospheres, and overall experience.




iZqh2RmTBaliSpirit Festival – The BaliSpirit Festival was founded as a premier international and holistic wellness and world music destination event that contributes positively to the ecological health, cultural vibrancy, and overall vitality of Bali and greater Indonesia. The goal of the BaliSpirit Festival is to awaken and nourish each individual’s potential for positive change within, leading to positive change in our homes, in our communities, and around the world.

Cool Apps:

b47e1569810e538f62cd1413d5a3bf9eJamstar – Jamstar is an interactive mobile (iOS and Android) and desktop app that acts as your own personal guitar teacher. Jamstar is catered for guitarists of all levels, and works with any acoustic and electric guitar, without requiring an extra device/ attachment to work along with a phone, tablet or computer. Jamstar is the only zero-latency guitar lessons app available on the market, which means that you will be given feedback in real time as you work through technique and style lessons, as well as individual songs from bands such as Led Zeppelin, Grateful Dead, Foo Fighters, Beatles, Muse and more through their partnerships with Alfred Music Publishing in the US and Faber Music in the UK.

ios-app-icon


Bedloo – Bedloo is a social voting mobile (iOS and Android) and desktop app that has taken a familiar concept (as seen by Polar - http://www.polarb.com) and has significantly expanded upon it. Unlike the competition, Bedloo is the first social voting app to incorporate photos, videos (via YouTube) and audio (via Souncloud) into one app. 



Fierce Fabulous Females:

uKEiRvggAshley Davis – Kansas-born Celtic-Bluegrass musician Ashley Davis is about to release her fourth album “Night Travels”. An internationally recognized recording artist and songwriter, Ashley has collaborated with such musical luminaries as the Chieftains’ Paddy Moloney, fiddle player Eileen Ivers, harpist Cormac De Barra, singer-songwriters John Doyle and John Spillane, and the “First Lady of Celtic Music,” Moya Brennan. Throughout her career, she has, to quote NBC’s “Today Show” co-host Meredith Vieira, thrilled audiences with “new music springing from ancient roots.

WCXoIJ2dCarry Illinois – The essence of the folk heritage is music for the people by the people, and singer-songwriter Lizzy Lehman furthers this tradition in a variety of meaningful ways. As a solo artist, she draws on the folk tradition to sincerely express herself and forge deep communal bonds across social and societal lines. Within a band context—with her group Carry Illinois—she progresses the music form through bold sonic experimentation. The Austin, Texas quartet specializes in reimagining Lizzy’s campfire folk compositions with adventurous musicality and spacy textures. The group’s five-song debut EP Siren is best described as late-night heart worn indie folk-rock.

b790c62d9b446f78382ab8ececf69a0a-2Carrington MacDuffie – Poet/songwriter and New York native Carrington MacDuffie felt her spirit come alive in the Americana scene of Austin,Texas. Her new EP “Only An Angel” is a cool breeze of Americana, with its sheen of contemporary musical arrangements, her soothing and sexy vocal style, and the fluidity of world-class musicianship.  MacDuffie draws on artists who incited her imagination at a young age, such as Bobbie Gentry, Neil Young, and Cat Stevens. She sidesteps the laden narrative nature of more traditional Americana and speaks in lush imagery to express some of the most troublesome of human uncertainties.

Children’s Artists & Youth Projects:

wyFWiy7rJonathan Sprout – Singer-songwriter and recording artist, Jonathan Sprout has dedicated the past 20 years to creating meaningful and captivating music for children. Jonathan has performed more than 5,000 concerts and lead more than 750 songwriting workshops for children. His recordings and concerts have earned critical acclaim as groundbreaking entries in the field of educational children’s music and his album “American Heroes #3” was nominated for a Grammy® in 2010. Jonathan recently completed his 10th album, “American Heroes #4”, which was released in February, 2014.

4da18e9426afda8d7d50f6aa0fe662adRhythm Child – Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter/percussionist/educator Norman Jones is ushering in a new era of children’s music. His family band and brand “Rhythm Child” is an innovative platform offering children soulful and meaningful music with an interactive component to bolster health and developmental skills. With accolades and endorsements ranging from the First Lady to respected educational media, Jones and Rhythm Child are reimagining the kid’s music experience. Through Rhythm Child, Jones has released 2 full lengths, 1 EP, an instructional drumming CD, an illustrated lyric book, and he’s also offering a REMO Sound Shape Drum & Stick with the Rhythm Child Logo printed on the head. The signature drum allows children to be a part of the music, granting them a powerful interactive tool to use at shows and at home while enjoying Rhythm Child CDs.

Jg7cve0gThe Yr12 Music FestivalThe Yr12 Music Festival, based in Sydney, AUS, provides eight public concerts, designed to give ‘Year 12′ students (high school) the opportunity to perform to the public. Over six thousand Yr12 musicians reach an incredibly high standard for their final exams and neither teachers nor their family and support team nor members of the public are allowed to share their moment of excellence.



Click to continue...

0 Comments

9 Steps To Getting A Job In The Music Business

Business Man at Starting Line Road Path

So… you want to be in the music business? There are a lot of you out there. I know this because every time we put out a call for interns or jobs at Cyber PR®, we get over 100 resumes.  As you know I love breaking things down into steps (see: http://www.MusicSuccessInNineWeeks.com).  So, I wrote this guide for you. Once upon a time, I was just like you: dying to follow my passion and aggressively trying to land a job in the industry of my dreams. It was a humbling and, at times, humiliating exercise.

Interns are much needed in every facet of the industry, and most of my music industry friends (myself included) started out as unpaid interns back in their day and we leveraged our unpaid internships into paying jobs. Unpaid internships, however, were recently made illegal after a lawsuit against Warner Music Group, so you can at least be guaranteed some form of compensation for your internship (though don’t expect much).

Step 1: Identify Your Ares of Interest

Search your mind. Ask yourself what part of the music business do you want to be in? Is it working at a label, a radio station, a publicity firm, an online marketing company, in touring, or digital distribution? You may not know the answer to this question yet and that’s alright. You are not supposed to know until you get some experience in a particular area. BUT if you don’t specify what you are looking to try, the people in charge of hiring you will have NO CLUE where you will fit or how they can fit you into their business. So having a list of general areas of interest is a necessity.

Here are two suggestions to help you get a working knowledge of what different parts of the music industry are available:

1. Read music business related websites like Hypebot & Music Think Tank and start reading articles and news. There are countless articles available advising musicians and marketers on how do tackle their own careers.  If the articles resonate with you and seem interesting than you have found a good match.

2. Create a list of areas that you are interested in working in.

  • Major Label(i.e. Sony, Warner) – Specify a department: Promotions, Publicity, Radio, Marketing, Licensing…
  • Indie Label – You probably won’t need to specify departments they are small it will be all hands on deck.
  • Indie Artist – Remember many artists are DIY and would love the help of a capable person so working for the artist is an option as well.
  • Marketing Firm – There are many genres within: Regional, Online/ Digital, Tour, Specialty / Niche/Lifestyle
  • Radio Station – Specify a department: On Air, Producer, Sales, Promotions, etc.

More: Publicity Firm, Management Company, Booking Agency, Indie Radio Promotions, Music Venue, Concert Promoter, Production / Recording Studio, Publishing Company, Film & TV Licensing, Special Events Company.

Research as much as you can in your chosen field. Again, think like a musician. There are a million resources available for musicians that list companies that help support them, and they all have websites that clearly show what they do and who their clients are.

Step 2: Make Your Dream List of Companies & Artists

If you love a specific band or artist, look up who they work with and put those companies on your list because nothing is more thrilling and satisfying than working for your favorite artists and bands (I still get a thrill out of that and I’ve been working in the music industry for 19 years).

Step 3:Rock Your Resume

Next, create the best resume you can put together. There are many websites, books, and even your career counseling office at school that can instruct you on how to do this so I’m not going to get into much detail here. But please heed this advice:

Be Concise – One page only

Be Detailed – What exactly did you do at the previous jobs that you list?  These should express your talents.

Be Interesting – Include personal touches and hobbies or special interests.

Be Social - On your resume don’t forget to mention how many followers you have on Twitter, Facebook, and which music promotion social media sites you know how to use Last FM, ReverbNation, etc.

TIP: The music business tends to be informal, so you have some room to play with your resume and make your personality shine through more than you would on a “corporate” resume.

Step 4: Recommendations Rule

I call the first people that have great reference letters in for interviews first!

Call an old employer, a professor, or a person in your life that can write you a spectacular recommendation letter. If you can ask the person writing the letter to mention strengths that will be cohesive with the job you want, it will really make you stand out.

Step 5: Start Applying

Now that you have your list, there are three places you can go:

1. Straight to the companies of your dreams that you have discovered – in these cases, they may not be advertising for interns so you need to cold call and ask first if they would consider accepting a resume (be excited and tell the truth that you

found out about their company and you would love to be considered). Then ask to whom the resume should be addressed.
2. Websites where employers post for interns – We use our own blog and LinkedIn.

3. Your college’s career office (Don’t count on them as your main resource – my best interns found me by looking online).

Step 6: Know the Golden Rules

NEVER EVER send a resume without a cover letter. It’s totally unprofessional.

Include the NAME, ADDRESS, COMPANY NAME, and INDIVIDUAL’S NAME on each cover letter, and CUSTOMIZE each letter FOR THAT SPECIFIC COMPANY. Yes, this will take longer but it will also get you results. If it is not obvious call and politely ask!

Note: Out of the 100 resumes I received on my last round of hiring, only three people put my company name on the cover letter and wrote “Dear Ms. Hyatt”.  A few wrote “Dear Sir.” Under no circumstances am I a sir (a 1.1 second Google search will tell you this).

100% of all of these letters mentioned in the first paragraph that the candidate had excellent communication skills – and I thought are you kidding me?? If you are so excellent at communicating, how come my name was not mentioned anywhere?  The letters that really annoyed me and made me never want to meet the candidate were the letters that said  “Dear HR Dept” or even more gross: “Dear Hiring Committee,” enough said.

Mention some things that relate directly to the company you are applying to – the names of their artists, your passion about what it is they do, how you became interested in music, etc.

Please for the love of sweet God above DON’T write any of the following lines:

“I have excellent communication skills.”

“I have loved music for as long as I can remember…”

“I believe I am the perfect match for your company (unless you say WHY).”

“My extensive background in music…” OK, if you are under the age of 25 you DON’T have an extensive background (an extensive background is 10 years or more).

DO write the following lines (if they are not the truth of course don’t write these):

“I have been a fan of (artist’s name this company works with here) since (year/concert you attended, etc.).”

“I have always wanted to learn about (company’s specialty here) and a position at your company would provide me just that opportunity.”

“I have (#) of friends on (Twitter/Facebook/Last FM/any other relevant social networking site here”

If you are applying to a digital marketing or PR firm highlight how many online friends you have on social networking sites, or if you use Tumblr or blog. This could be your golden ticket! Everyone loves a well-connected intern. It’s a huge asset!

“I have already had some experience with (booking, promoting, etc), and would love to expand on what I have already learned at (school, from volunteering etc.).”

Step 7: Go Old School – Snail Mail or Fax

Most of these websites give you an interface to go through and you submit your resume straight to them via the Internet. Definitely do this and IN ADDITION if you can fax or mail in your resume, I highly recommend you do this as well, it’s so old school it’s now new!

Step 8: Treat Each Resume Like a Lost Puppy

Back to my 100 candidates from this past month – Two people called to follow up to see if I had received their resumes! This is mystifying.

So – a few days after you send the resume, call to follow up! This is a great way to stand out in the crowd because no one else is following up.

Don’t get an answer?  try @’ing the company or executive you want to reach via Twitter or send them a message on Facebook.

Even if the website says “don’t call us, we’ll call you” you should call and politely ask if your resume was received because 100% of everyone I know in the music business is so busy that they don’t have time to always follow up with the deluge of resumes. This could be a missed opportunity to land a job!

Step 9: Kill It at Your Interview

So, you followed my steps and you got an interview set up? Wonderful!

If you get three or four interviews, go to the one that you are least interested in FIRST to sharpen your interview skills.

TIP: ON THE DAY OF: Call first to confirm your interview. It’s professional and a great way to stand out.

Be 5 minutes early (not more), and remember the music business is casual so a three-piece suit is highly discouraged. I suggest business casual.

Bring a book or a magazine in case you have to wait.  Don’t talk on you mobile phone or text while you wait!

Bring two copies of your resume, cover letter, and recommendation letter as well as some writing samples (if applicable – even if it’s a paper you wrote about the music business). This is interesting and it sets you apart again!

Don’t be afraid to ask questions like “What does a typical internship encompass here?” or “Do you have some specific projects I might be working on?”

With most internship interviews I do, I always have to ask: Do you have any questions? And it always leaves a weird taste in my mouth if they have none – even if you ask how many days the company is expecting interns to work and what the hours would be. At least you are establishing a dialog! I suggest preparing 2-3 in-depth questions that you have researched by looking online at this specific company and come prepared!

MORE TIPS:The smaller the company, the more work you will probably end up doing and the more experience you will gain – it’s just the nature of the beast.

If you don’t like the person that interviews you, or the vibe at the company don’t take the job – trust your instincts!

Don’t ask if the internship will turn into a paid position. You are in charge of being the most awesome intern that they ever had. This will lead to a job but first you have to prove yourself!

Bonus Step 10: Always Follow Up!!!

Even if you HATED the interview, ALWAYS send a thank you email to follow up (or better yet a CARD!) to say thanks for taking the time to interview me! If you really enjoyed the interview, SAY SO and WHY. And don’t be afraid to say “after meeting you I am even more convinced that I would like to work with you!” Flattery will get you (almost everywhere).

I hope that these tips turn into a winning internship experience, and I would love to hear from you and find out how this guide worked for you –please post here.

Click to continue...

17 Comments

How Emotional Connections Are the Backbone of Every Fan Tribe

two persons with gears. the concept of logical and associative thinking man

Social media creates the appearance that each of your fans holds the same weight, be it one ‘like’, one ‘follow’, or one ‘friend’. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

Your fans are all different.

The fact is that you will run into a wide range of fans; some of whom are passively connected to you online but may not have actually heard you, meanwhile others will be dedicated super fans who actively evangelize your music to others. Of course, most of your fans will fall somewhere in between these two extremes.

However, no matter how small the percentage of your fan base that could be considered super fans, these are your true money makers and thus should be the focal point of a majority of your time and attention.

Super fans are the ones who will not just evangelize your music, but will spend the most money- on downloads, physical albums, tickets and mercy.

So what makes super fans so special?

An emotional connection has been established.

These fans more than just like your music. They have a connection to you, your music, and/ or even the fan base that is so strong that it is a part of them.

The more emotionally connected fans you have, the more money you will make both in the short-term and the long-term. The following are 4 ways that you can use to not only cater to existing super fans, but can actually help you to create MORE emotionally connected fans.

Newsletter

Before the internet, newsletters were used as a way to connect a world-wide community of fans. However, even now with the existence of social networks, newsletters are a personal and direct interaction that can connect not just you to your fans, but your fans to each other.

Two excellent examples of community newsletters are the Grateful Dead’s ‘Almanac’ and Phish’s ‘Doniac Schvice’. What made these newsletters work so well is that they covered more than the music; they covered the scene as a whole.

The ‘Almanac’, typically spanning 5 or 6 pages in length, spent much of the first few pages showcasing original (and exclusive!!) artwork, discussing side projects and music as a whole that the community would be interested in, as well as updating the community about the charitable foundations started by band members (more on sharing passions below). The second half would be band news, announcements of upcoming tours or album releases and finally, mail order music/ merch and tickets.

Phish’s Doniac Schvice was very similar to the Grateful Dead’s Almanac, offering up news and updates of both band and community related events.

However the Doniac Schvice had much more direct band involvement, including Mike’s Corner and Fish’s Forum, two reoccurring and often hysterical op-ed pieces written by bassist Mike Gordon and drummer Jon Fishman. There were also ‘Mike Replies’ where Mike Gordon would publicly reply to fan letters.

By focusing on the community, the fans who received the newsletter were becoming emotionally connected to the scene; not just the music, but the band members and even the fans. If you were in the community, you were apart of something bigger than yourself and that meant something.

Video Tour Diary

A concert is more than just music. It is an event. An experience.

A well-delivered concert experience is THE best way to connect with your fans on an emotional level. Because of this, video tour diaries are an extremely effective way to increase that emotional connected established through the concert experience, by giving the attendee’s a deeper look into the behind the scenes happenings before, during and after the concert. Ultimately this gives attendees the chance to grab on to, and re-live the event any time they want to.

The idea of a video tour diary has become quite popular in the emerging hip-hop world, as many of these upcoming artists give their music away for free through mixtapes and focus on making money from the live show; a business model similar to that made famous by the Grateful Dead and Phish.

These videos not only act as a way to offer additional value to those who attended the event, increasing the emotional connection within, but can function as an emotional marketing tool as well. Giving your fan base the opportunity to take a sneak peek of your recent live shows is a fantastic way to drive further ticket sales…

Always remember that a concert is more than just the music. It is an event. If you can convey that your shows are a must-see experience, then you’ve already begun to establish an emotional connection with fans before they’ve even bought the ticket.

Share Passions Outside Of Music

Yes you are a musician, and yes your fans are so because of your music. But there is no reason the connection between you and your fans needs to end with the music. By sharing more of your passions with your fan base, you are creating an opportunity to greatly strengthen the emotional connection you have with fans who are not only passionate about your music, but these outside passions as well. This is how a community of super fans is born.

This is niche marketing at its finest. Since a niche is a very specific, distinct segment of a market, those who support and act from within are much more likely to be passionate about it than someone who supports a broad topic or market. As a rule of thumb, as a market becomes more niche focused, the support from within becomes more passion based.

A great example of sharing passions outside of music, and leveraging it to strengthen the emotional connection TO the music is Farm Aid. Started by Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Melloncamp in 1975, this now annual concert was created as a way to spread the awareness of the loss of family farms and to raise funds that help keep farm families on their land.

Over 30 years later, Farm Aid is still taking place every year with Willie Nelson in particular acting as the soundtrack to the movement.

Name Your Fans

This is THE first step to creating a tribe, which is the most ultimate form of emotionally connected fan base you could have. This gives your fans away of identifying themselves as apart of a group, and ultimately this creates insiders and outsiders which helps to strengthen the loyalty of those within.

Again Phish and the Grateful Dead did this, with their ‘tribes’ being dubbed Phish Heads and Dead Heads respectively. Being a Phish or Dead Head meant something more than just being a casual fan – it meant that you were a respected piece of a larger community and brought along with it a sense of belonging.

Today, this has been translated to other genres though still holds the exact same precedence where the fans within the tribe are a welcomed member of a community. Like her or not, Lady Gaga has done an incredible job labeling her fans as her ‘Little Monsters’.

Even emerging hip-hop artists are starting to understand the power of naming the fan base, such as CT-based Chris Webby, whose ‘Ninjas’ (Webby is an avid Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fan) have lead to the over 13 Million youtube views. His latest mixtape  garnered over 23,000 downloads in under 24 hours.

By giving fans a name and giving them a sense of belonging, loyalty to the community goes through the roof, leading to stronger long-term sales than you could ever have other wise. The fans within these tribes are the ones who look for every opportunity to buy a new release, ticket or t-shirt, are the first to share a new music video (or tour video above, wink-wink), and are THE best asset you can have as you continue to build upon your fan base.

How Have YOU Created An Emotional Connection To Your Fans?

All emerging musicians can benefit from having established emotional connections between themselves and their fans. Please leave any suggestions, ideas or feedback about how YOU have managed to make this work below in the form of a comment!

Click to continue...

12 Comments
Page 1 of 3612345102030...Last »