Careers in music are built on fans that are engaged with the music and feel connected to the artist. Fortunately there are dozens of services and tools to help artists. Yet if you’re an artist, where do you start? Do you need more than one service? If so, what’s the right combination for you? How do you make sense of it all?
With artists struggling to figure out what they need to do, we’ve developed a “Survival Guide for Engaging Fans and Building a Career in Music” to put shape around this increasingly confusing landscape. It illustrates the ‘tools-for-musicians’ ecosystem, some (but of course, not all) of the key players, their relationship to the whole, and how mobile plays into all of this.
Here’s how it works:
First, do whatever needs to be done to get discovered. This doesn’t mean getting discovered by millions of people, but rather, a core initial group of fans that you will build on.
Next, engage this core initial group of fans in an interactive and authentic way in order to convert them from casual fans into loyal fans. By doing so, fans will be much more likely to support you financially and spread the word.
Once a deep connection has been made, offer fans many ways to support you financially and make it easy for them to do so. This includes selling music and creative bundles directly from your website, offering unique merch, and giving fans the opportunity to invest in you through one of the many crowdfunding platforms out there, like PledgeMusic. Get creative and don’t assume the only way to get paid is to sell music in iTunes!
Finally, carefully analyze what has worked and what hasn’t, and adjust things accordingly. Then, repeat, repeat, repeat… and don’t forget about mobile!