The majority of artists overlook the most important aspects of building their fanbase.
They get addicted to shiny objects and things like artist profile sites (ReverbNation, etc.), thinking that will help them get discovered and propel them into the spotlight.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
There are actually three aspects a musician needs to develop about themselves that are FARRRR superior to any of those shiny, distracting tools or websites…
Do these three things and it will truly make a difference in your music career.
How can you connect with fans and actually grow your audience?
Let me give you a few things to consider.
Some of this will require some homework.
- You need a great story.
Sometimes your story needs to involve the one thing you’re uncomfortable with.
For me, it was that I’m a regular “mom” and I have a large family.
That didn’t feel “cool,” especially in my genre of symphonic metal.
You just don’t see a lot of women with a pile of kids in my network. LOL.
So I didn’t want to talk about that a whole lot for the first few years.
And then I realized that one piece of the puzzle was actually what made me relatable.
It’s what separates me from everyone else in my genre.
And so instead of shying away from that fact, I celebrated it and started incorporating it into my story during interviews, magazine articles, and my biography.
And you know what happened? I gained more fans.
You should do the same.
Figure out what about your background, influences, or life events has made you different from the others in your genre, and make that one personal thing you almost want to shy away from the thing that makes you stand out among the crowd!
Get over trying to have a celebrity “mystique” and be a real human with real struggles and a real life, and you will draw fans to you!
- You need a way to find fans.
This is something I dig into in more detail in my free training class (link below).
What you need to understand is that you cannot grow your following and fanbase organically.
I know, that’s a shocker, but I always promise to tell you the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
If you thought that, if you could just release your music into the universe, someone somewhere would hear it and the rest would be history… I hate to say it, but you’ve been dreaming.
I once thought that too.
If you build it… they will NOT come.
You need a shortcut to finding the fans who will love your music and would like to become your new super-followers.
And then you need to turn those listeners into customers that hopefully will buy from you for the rest of their lives.
For more on this particular strategy, click the link at the bottom of this post.
What you need to know, though, is that some highly specific social-media strategies are a key way to do this, as well as a very modest advertising budget.
- You need a way to engage fans.
It’s one thing to identify your potential fans, but it’s another thing to get them to engage and interact with you.
In the marketing world, there’s a saying that breaks down the entire sales process: “Expose, Involve, and Upgrade.”
Let me explain what this means for you as a musician.
First, your potential fan sees your music for the first time.
You’re a stranger, but something about you, your cover art, your headline, or the music itself intrigues them enough to take some kind of action.
Perhaps they click on a link that leads them to a page with your song where they can stream it.
At this point, they’ve been exposed to your music.
Next you want them to get involved by doing something.
Maybe they sign up to get a free song.
Maybe they are streaming it somewhere.
But they are doing something.
It’s an action on their end that is giving them some kind of result.
Hopefully the result is that they are loving what they’re hearing!
And next would be the upgrade part. You give them an opportunity to purchase your album for a great price or support you in some other way (crowdfunding, fanclub, etc.)
And that is the process that every musician needs to understand if they want to be successful.
The last thing I want you to realize is that if you make music, you are an entrepreneur. You’re a business owner. It means YOU and YOU ALONE are responsible for your success and your outcome.
No one can make people like your music. No one can make you successful.
But… if you have talent, and you have the passion and the drive to be successful AND you combine that with a strategy that works in the New Music Industry, then NO ONE will be able to hold you back from success.