Does social media matter for your music career? Realistically, what can you expect to achieve from spending your time, energy, and resources on growing your social media following?
That’s what we’re going to be looking at in this episode of The New Music Industry Podcast.
- 00:30 – Does social media matter for artists?
- 01:14 – Gaining a better understanding of your audience
- 02:34 – Sharing your music with fan groups
- 03:24 – Targeting your audience with advertising
- 04:16 – Building worthwhile connections
- 05:08 – Will social media make a difference for you?
- 06:35 – Episode summary
Hey, it’s David Andrew Wiebe.
So, does social media matter?
I talked about this a little bit in episode 183 of the podcast, and that basically turned into a bit of a rant, but I think it’s an important question to ask and one worth revisiting.
After all, the first thing many artists do when they begin marketing their music online is rely on platforms that have millions and billions of users to spread their posts to for free.
And all that looks good and sounds good, but unless you know who your target audience is, where they hang out online, and what they’re interested in, I can tell you almost categorically that it’s going to be a waste of time. It just is.
But let’s focus on a few areas where social media can make a difference for you if you’re willing to do the work.
#1 – You Can Spy on Your Audience and Better Understand Them
There’s a lot of talk about data in the music industry, and I even had a great one with Beatchain founder Ben Mendoza in episode 197 of the podcast.
But staring at your Facebook Insights is only going to tell you so much about your fans. Demographic data is great, but most of the time, you’ll find that your audience is you plus or minus 15 years in age.
What we need to understand to be able to connect, engage, and attract prospective fans is psychographic data. It sounds complex, but it basically just means what your audience is interested in.What we need to understand to be able to connect, engage, and attract prospective fans is psychographic data. Click To Tweet
And there’s a remarkably easy way to figure this out. Instagram happens to be a great place to gather a bit of intel.
You can look up an artist you sound like or have been influenced by, see who has commented on their posts, and then look at their profiles.
And on their profiles, you’ll find pictures of things they’re interested in. Basically, you’d want to make note of everything you find, and pay careful attention to recurring themes. Once you know what those themes are, you’ve effectively got a list of things you should be posting about every single day.
If you don’t know who you sound like, who you’ve been influenced by, or who in the world your audience is, then this is a pointless exercise. But if you do know, you can begin to flesh out your ideal customer profile.
#2 – You Can Share Your Music in Fan Groups
This is a great tactic overall, as it allows you to get your music in front of prospective fans organically.
Basically, the idea is to go and find Facebook fan groups of a specific artist you sound like or have been influenced by. Then, as you begin participating in the group, you would share your music with members.
It takes some work to be able to do this well. You may need to build relationships with group owners. You may need to figure out how to get your posts engaged. And there can be other strategic considerations when sharing in Facebook groups.
But I can see the value in this tactic, and it’s something I will be experimenting with as well. At the very least, if it’s done the right way, I know it’s a relatively fast way to get a lot of attention for your music, because fan groups tend to be big and the members tend to be engaged.
#3 – You Can Advertise to a Specific Audience
Like I said earlier, this is kind of a moot point if you haven’t fleshed out a profile for your audience already. But if you have, then you’ve got a lot actionable data to work with.
Advertising is incredible. It takes a little while to figure out, and to that extent, I recommend taking a course on the topic. You don’t need to pay an arm and a leg for a course. Just find one that’s up to date, has a high ranking, and was created by a reputable entity.
I recently took a free course on Amazon Advertising. I’ve got five books up there, so I figured, why not?
And once I was finished with the course, I basically had all the information I needed to be able to handle Amazon ads like a pro.
When it comes to advertising, the more you know about your audience, the better. Because you’ll be able to home in on the right targeting and create the right type of post to appeal to your fans and prospects.When it comes to advertising, the more you know about your audience, the better. Click To Tweet
#4 – You Can Create Connections
I get quite a few messages across social media platforms, and while I was slow to embrace it, I’m starting to see way more value in it than ever.
I’m getting all kinds of interesting questions from people my keyword research may never reveal. And while it’s all well and good to rank for certain keywords in Google, the people who are already engaged with my content generally represent better prospects overall.
So, knowing what they’re interested in learning helps me in a big way.
Connecting with people on social media has led to podcast interviews, guest post opportunities, and even coaching prospects.
When we get out of our own way and begin interacting with others in an authentic manner, we can connect with just about anybody in the world, and the value of that is often lost on us, because we get too fixated on our personal comfort and interests.
As I’ve shared before, the only proposition worth making is one that’s win-win.The only proposition worth making is one that’s win-win. Click To Tweet
Will Social Media Make a Difference?
So, will social media make a difference?
Although I could keep talking about the benefits of social media, of which there are more, I think it’s time to get to the crux of the show.
So, the answer to this question is… it depends.
It will make a difference if you’re clear on your strategy – most importantly, your brand and your audience.
Every decision you make in your music career should stem from those two things, because let’s face it – it makes life so much easier.
Once you’re clear on your brand and audience, you can begin to develop your Dream 100, and that’s going to get you focused on connecting with the right people.
Rather than getting overwhelmed by the thousands of people you surely could connect with; you can limit it to those who have access to your target audience. And that makes this whole matter of networking and collaboration so much more focused.
And, as I’ve already shared, social media represents a massive opportunity when it comes to learning about your audience.
There are certain things social media can’t do, and that’s what we want to watch out for.
You can’t own social media. Meanwhile, you can build a website where the sole focus is on you and your music.
You can’t own your followers on social media. But you can encourage them to sign up for your email list, which you should!
And, if you don’t have a hot clue what your brand is, or who your audience is, then social media is ultimately going to be a waste of time.
Social media can also end up being a massive distraction, and I would argue that for most musicians, this is what it typically ends up being.
Okay, it’s time to summarize this episode, so here’s what you need to know.
- Social media is good for some things. You can spy on your audience, share your music in fan groups, get your ads in front of your target audience, build great connections, and more.
- Social media isn’t that great for other things. Organic reach sucks. And social media is basically just a time suck if you don’t know what your brand is, or who your audience is supposed to be. Social media is also a massive distraction for most artists.
There’s so much more I could get into here, but the key is to understand how powerful social media can be if used strategically.
So, what if you need more guidance around social media? What if you need some structure to ensure you’re doing the right things at the right time?
I suggest picking up a copy of my latest book, The Music Entrepreneur Code at MusicEntrepreneurHQ.com/Code to learn exactly how to get more done in less time.
This has been episode 210 of The New Music Industry Podcast and I look forward to seeing you on the stages of the world.