VoiceCouncil will no longer be updated. Articles will still be available for some time.

7 Key Social Media Tips for Musicians

Lady Gaga and Roseanne Cash have switched on to social media; so can you -says Susanne Currid

I’m delighted to see how artists as diverse as Lady Gaga, Erykha Badu and Roseanne Cash have all switched on to social media as a powerful new means to engage with their fans.

However, as I look around the web I can see that too many performers have yet to grasp the social media marketing opportunity.

For those of you who are looking for better ways use social media to promote your music, here are my seven essential social media marketing tips for singers and bands.

1. Be Easy To Find
Number one, make sure your fans and potential fans can easily find you on social media. Even if you are not tweeting or posting much, at the very minimum have a musician’s page on Facebook and a Twitter account that link to your website, SoundCloud, blog or MySpace profile. If you’re fully on the social wagon, why not establish a presence on Pinterest which is perfect for showcasing your glossiest videos and photos. Instagram is also a brilliant channel for sharing behind-the-scenes images that tell a more personal story about you and your music. Did you know that Twitter and Facebook profiles achieve high visibility in search engine results? So, having these profiles set up also seriously increases the chances of people finding you through web search.

2. Connect With Your Fans
If you’re not encouraging fans to like your Facebook page on arrival you’re missing a huge opportunity to stay connected. As a simple incentive you can allow fans to listen to a special track in exchange for a Like on Facebook. This can be setup using a 3rd party Facebook app such as BandPage which comes in free and low-cost options. Also, if your fanbase is email friendly, I highly recommend you include an email newsletter signup tab on your Facebook page. These tabs come as part of the package with online email management tools such as MailChimp or Aweber. Once fans are on your list you can keep in touch by email with news updates regarding tours and new releases.

3. Be Constant & Stay Authentic
To be honest, I’m dismayed at how poor many performers are at posting regularly on social media. Just think about it. If you only talk to your fans when you’ve got a new track or gig to promote then your relationship is set to stay in the shallows. On social media, I believe you’ll get payback big time if you nurture your fans more with regular posts and updates, not just on your music but on the things that you love or inspire you. Share the love in an authentic, engaging way and your fans will adore you even more for it.

4. Increase Post Quality
Social savvy performers make sure to post content that stands out from the crowd. Great content can be funny, useful, personally revealing or a heart-felt message that reflects your values.

5. Connect With Influencers
Music bloggers have become highly influential in breaking new musicians to the scene. Make sure you get to know the top bloggers who influence your audience and take steps to connect with them on Twitter. As with off-line relationships, it’s best to get to know the blogger by approaching them on Twitter with useful info, retweeting their content with a positive comment or sharing something amusing before you start getting hot and heavy with news of your latest release. And of course, you can also apply the same strategy to twitter-friendly journalists and Radio & TV presenters/producers.

6. Build “Release Day” Buzz
If you’ve followed tips #1 – #5 then your social media channels become great places to build buzz on the day you release your new recording. Why not post your new video or track for playback on your Twitter or Facebook newsfeed? Since most people don’t sit around watching their newsfeed all day, you need to post at different times to catch different audiences, especially on Twitter. Post hourly throughout the day with special news and exclusive content to build the buzz further still.

7. Increase Online Sales
Last but definitely not least, you can now sell MP3 downloads and merchandise directly from Facebook by installing 3rd party apps such as BandCamp who offer a simple revenue share deal.

By day Susanne Currid is a social media marketing consultant & trainer who helps businesses to connect with their tribe online. Most other times she’s on intravenous drip to #indie #pop #folk #rock. For more tips and news on social media marketing you can follow Susanne Currid on Twitter at @susanne_currid