Social Networking & Community Building for Musicians
As an artist, itís important that you utilize Web 2.0 to engage your fans by allowing them to connect with you in ways artists couldnít just 5 years ago.† Every social network youíre not a part of is a potential group of fans youíve lost.† The following are the five most useful online communities you can be a part of to begin expanding your network and building solid artist-fan relationships.
The Internet has become a vast web of people from all over the world building relationships, engaging in conversation & ultimately expanding their networks.† Weíve already stressed the importance of social networking on this blog but wanted to take it a step further.† As an artist, itís important that you utilize Web 2.0 to engage your fans by allowing them to connect with you in ways artists couldnít just 5 years ago.† Every social network youíre not a part of is a potential group of fans youíve lost.† The following are the five most useful online communities you can be a part of to begin expanding your network and building solid artist-fan relationships:
1. MySpace Music
This is the most popular of all social networks for musicians.† Anyone from the garage band next door to deceased artists have a MySpace Music page.† Itís the easiest way for fans, especially potential fans, to get a taste of your music and even get in touch with you.† On MySpace you can post songs, videos, pictures, have blog entries, tour information, band information, etc.† Itís almost like an electronic press kit or resume of sorts all on one page.
Although Facebook hasnít yet developed a full fledged Music section like MySpace has, there are still thousands of users you can connect with, many of whom are not on MySpace.† On Facebook you can create a fan page that functions almost like a group for users to join.† Similar to MySpace, you can post pictures, videos, discography and allow fans to write on your Wall.† Facebook is slowly becoming the next best tool on the Internet for musicians.† Click here for a list and description of applications for musicians on Facebook.
3. Create a Website
Many musicians start off with a MySpace Music page and eventually create their own website.† This helps legitimize yourself (or selves) and allows you to do more, such as creating a forum, for your fans to discuss your music/concerts/news/etc.† Having your own website allows you more freedom to get creative and provides a way for people to find you via search engines.† For example, if you create a blog on your website and use key word rich text, there is a good chance someone searching for your style of music will land on your page.† Click here for an article containing useful tips on Search Engine Optimization for musicians.
Earlier we did a post on the Five Twitter Applications for Musicians and Bands.† More and more musicians continue to create Twitter accounts.† Whatís unique about this micro-blogging social network is that it allows your fans to get a further glimpse into your life/recording process/recommendations and anything else you can fit into 140 words.† Especially now with phone applications, your Twitter followers can get updates sent directly to their phones that way they can stay connected with you at all times.
Whatís great about ReverbNation is that it was created with musicians specifically in mind. By providing various tools and widgets, musicians are allowed to spread their music and information anywhere.† Just sign up for free and start uploading content, then check your stats in real time to see how your music is spreading, who is listening, and which fans are actually sharing your music with other people.
Ultimately you should get as creative as possible with your social networking.† A lot of artists, such as 50 Cent, have even launched their own social networks!† And remember to always give your fans a reason to come back by posting as frequently as possible, giving them downloads or allowing them to stream your album before it releases.
Please feel free to contact Audiolife (CustomerCare@Audiolife.com) with any specific questions. We are here as a resource for artists around the world and we want to see you succeed!
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Aaron Wiener, VP of Artist Relations, Audiolife