Week 4 of Ariel’s blogging competition focuses on social media, which is one of the main topics that I write about on this blog.
If you read anything about technology these days, you have probably heard the term “Web 2.0″ being used about the Internet. I won’t go into crazy detail (read this post for that), but basically, the term is used to describe websites today that are dynamic, and constantly updating and changing. A decade ago, the web used to be a collection of static websites that did not change very often, and were tedious to do so.
Over the last decade, websites and the programming languages that govern them have evolved, and it is now easier than ever to create a website that can be easily updated with a constant flow of interesting content and two-way conversation. Social networks, specifically, are great examples of this advance in technology, and are great places for you to connect with fans, promote your music, and drive traffic (and hopefully sales, too!) to your website.
In Chapter 4 of Music Success in Nine Weeks, Ariel mentions a website that I think is very valuable for musicians just starting to approach Web 2.0 and social media.
Common Craft creates and publishes a ton of free, 3-minute videos that help introduce complex subjects to beginners. I highly recommend you check out their “videos” page, scroll down to the “Videos on Technology” section, and watch a few to get a basic grasp on all this Web 2.0 and social media hype. I did a few months back.
Social media must-haves
There are a few social networking websites that have become household names in the online world, and most of your fans probably use at least one or two of them. You probably already know what each of these sites are like, so I’m not going to waste your time explaining them, but if you make music you MUST have a presence on (at least) these sites.
The “Big Five”:
For my band, I created profiles on these five sites first. We uploaded our music to MySpace, interacted with fans on Facebook, tweeted interesting articles and exclusive information on Twitter, posted show photos to Flickr, and uploaded live videos to YouTube. Then, we connected all of these places to our official website (which hasn’t been fully launched yet).
Find your niche
In addition to the big social networks, it is also a good idea to pick a few smaller, niche websites because these are the places where you can connect with fans at the most intimate level, and convert music lovers into your core fan base. Some less popular (but still pretty popular) music social networks are Last.fm, thesixtyone, The Hype Machine, Buzznet, and Purevolume. These social networks are specifically focused on music, so it is pretty safe to assume that the people within these communities love music. Many of these websites have groups you can join (or form), so it could be a good idea to join groups related to your genre, and just start talking to people.
There is a ton of great examples, resources, and advice in this chapter that I did not mention, so if you haven’t already, be sure to head over to Amazon and purchase the book by clicking here: Purchase “Music Success in Nine Weeks” [Affiliate link]
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