Don't Be Lost in a Crowd, Leave Digital Footprints
One of the fundamentals of marketing is to know who your customer is and understand their behaviours. But, do artists and their teams really grasp this concept?
The biggest struggle any developing artist faces is figuring out how to reach new fans. But rarely do they approach this hurdle from the right mindset.
Every artist needs to spend some serious time understanding and decrypting the behaviour of a music fan and how they discover new music. You can learn an awful lot about how to market and promote your own music by simply learning the importance of how to build fans, by being a fan.
So let's take a look in the mirror shall we? As a self-confessed music junkie myself, I need to reflect upon how I stumbled upon my most recent musical passions. Admittedly, the process is different with each and every artist. The more resources an artist has behind them, the easier it is to discover them through traditional media (radio, magazines, TV, film). But time after time I've discovered new independent artists by stumbling upon an online trail of their digital footprints. And these new artists who I've become fans and supporters of are just as cash-strapped as yourself.
Wait a minute. Digital footprints?
Let me explain.
Everything you do online leaves a trail for people to potentially stumble upon. If you leave behind enough intriguing content, people will dig deeper and hopefully end up at your website, Facebook Fan Page, YouTube page...or even your iTunes page.
With each and every blog post, you open yourself up to the potential for discovery.
In the new real-time web, everything is searchable...as it happens. Twitter has driven this point home, even more so now that Google is indexing new tweets every second.
Every tweet, every comment you leave on someone's blog or Flickr page, every unique cover version of a song you post on YouTube...everything you do online opens you up to the potential of connecting with a new fan.
A successful independent artist is often one who has left many digital footprints across the web for potential new fans to follow.
So with this mindset in place, how will it affect the way you treat your online activities? Does that one new YouTube video you posted four months ago create enough new opportunities for you? Are you engaging with people on Twitter and actually talking to people about the things you care about? Do you only tweet once every couple of days? Are you creating actual conversations on your Facebook fan page wall? Do you comment on music industry blogs and leave your signature?
Here's an analogy I often use when consulting people on music marketing:
Just because your phone number is in the phone book doesn't mean your phone will ring. Your music is no different. Connect and engage with potential fans. Don't be lost in a crowd, leave digital footprints for new fans to follow. If you don't, you're leaving yourself open to remaining in everlasting obscurity.
-- an original post by Brian Thompson