IN A WORLD where fans more often look at social media accounts than websites for updates on their fav artists, it’s more important than ever to learn about ugly yet beautiful animal named Marketing. If you pet him and give him treats, Marketing can earn you new ‘likes’ on Facebook daily and more importantly- people off their butts and into venues. It’s a temperamental animal at times, because not every artist can use the same set of tactics and yield the same results. So, it might take a bit to get any results. Trust me.
Here’s a few pieces of advise to take your bands Facebook page from, “Oh, you have one?” to “I check it every day”. The advise is a mix between what I learned as an intern this summer with Thirty Tigers (thanks Morgan, Sarah, & Whitney!) and being an observant ‘net user. And, I’ll use some local Athens bands to show ya what I’m talking about.
Figure out your band’s voice
Do you only us lower case letters in all your posts? How about punctuation? Are you overly explicit in your details? Are you sarcastic? When you’re an up-and-coming artist, we (the public) need to get to know you in order to remember you. Analyze the way your bandmates talk to each other, to fans in person, on stage to the audience. What do you want people to think of your band? Then tailor the words/messages in your posts to reflect all those things. Dana Swimmer and New Madrid excel at this.
Give it some gas
At the birth of your Facebook page, you absolutely need to nurture it with some key info. It doesn’t matter if what you put in the “Bio” section is real or not, it needs to have something. Padre‘s bio says nothing about the band itself, but its hilarious. Dank Sinatra on the other hand, actually has a history of the band.
Ok, what I’m about to say may scare you. Try to post something on some social account every other day/few days when you’re just starting out. I know, I know, I’m not the best example and I dread using social media. BUT, you will lose people if you go months without posting. They’ll forget your page exists. Hopefully you have fans that are dedicated enough to rely on checking venue websites or have your number, but there’s a reason why marketing exists. Locals who have this down: Emily Hearn, and New Wives.
You need to remind your fans about upcoming shows. We are all terribly forgetful. But, bands are made up of humans and humans do more than just play music. Take the voice you defined earlier and do something with it. Post a funny picture with a funny caption. Post a boring picture with a funny caption. Talk about the weather- no, don’t do that. There’s thousands of bands out there-why are you special? LET THE WORLD GET TO KNOW YOU. I love the Secret Stages posts from Brothers. They’re killin’ this section.
Eye candy is your BFF
A whole page of status updates full of words is boring. Sorry ’bout it. Think about how you scroll down your personal Facebook news feed. What is your eye caught by? A great picture, video link, graphic! Stand out among the madness. If you don’t have any graphics, take some pictures, record a video on your phone, ect. There are maybe a handful of posts within the last two months that DON’T have any eye candy from the Family & Friends page.
Maybe it’s not all about you
Well, of course you made a band page for your band… but, the music biz heralds itself (at least on the indie level) on being a commuity-oriented environment. People help each other out. If you have a buddy who needs help with a kickstarter or just released an EP, think about sharing that on your page. Maybe he or she will share your big news in return! Check out Phiness for a good example of that.
Whenever you’re posting about a show where your band isn’t the only one playing, tag the other bands AND the venue. This way, all the followers of said organizations will see your post and will hopefully go to your page (and then to the show). Dank Sinatra can you show you the ropes.
Things you would’ve never thought of…
1. Make sure you put that you are from Athens, GA (or whatever city you hail from). This will help narrow the search, especially if your band name is Fork or some other kind of one-word nonsense.
2. You can opt to schedule posts. When you’re finished typing a post, there’s a little clock to the left of the ‘post’ button. So, you can schedule things if you won’t have time when you actually want it to be live. It’s like a mini Hootsuite for Facebook.
3. Try not to change the pages profile picture and/or cover photo tooooo often. You want to stay somewhat recognizable to people.
This has been a public service announcement.
Here’s a great vid from (not Athens, but Nashville locals) The Lonely Biscuits. Another great example of good marketing.