I’m just back from the mighty ASCAP Expo in Los Angeles where I spoke on a panel, did a book signing and sponsored.
I learned so much from the hundreds of artists I spoke to over the 3 days there and I boarded the plane with a whole new perspective on just how confronting marketing and social media is to 90% of artists.
You guys REALLY hate this stuff
You hate it so much that I literally felt like I had been beaten up over the concerns, complaints and sheer confusion directed my way.
So I will kick off with this: Making it in music is HARD
No matter what side of the fence you are on. My friends who are managers and agents and club owners work just as hard as my artist friends. And, music industry professionals are getting laid off left and right. This game (if you choose to play it) is not for the meek!
And now you, the artist are required to do a WHOLE LOT MORE than you might have 7, 8, 9 or 10 years ago (if you were lucky enough to have a label).
But here’s the thing:
The basic rules for success are still the same.
They have always been the same and those artists who understand this succeed: To Increase Your Bottom Line (no matter how you define your bottom line) you MUST focus on your fans!
The first step towards this is building rapport with everyone you come into contact with in person, social media and on your email list.
Everyone always references the astonishing Amanda Palmer as the poster child for success in this paradigm – the woman focuses on her fans!
You know how Amanda does this?
She STAYS at the venue after each and every show signing every CD and piece of merch and scrap of paper put in front of her
She STAYS until she has personally touched the last fan.
Then she STAYS in touch with them long after she has left their town with her newsletter, her blog, her Facebook posts and her Twitter stream.
She understands the rules of engagement.
It’s not magic – its just hard work.
You can have what she has too and here is how:
Today we are going back to three very important basics
(I’m not going to focus on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and all the social media that drives you bonkers this time – you can read many articles I wrote about social media on this blog)
- Your Newsletter
- Your Product Line
- Asking Your Fans What They Want