Relationship marketing for musicians: social media

“Buy my album….stream my new single…. visit my concert…” All too easy to use as posts on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram if you’re an artist. Tell people where you will be performing or when your new release hits the stores, is part of so-called transactional marketing activities. But what if you use social media to contact your fans, shouldn’t you start with focusing on the ‘social’ part first?

Relationship marketing
This is where relationship marketing proves its value. Traditional ways of selling music have changed over the years, wouldn’t it be about time to change the way we market our brands? Instead of asking people to purchase our product (part of transactional marketing) it’s better to focus on building and maintaining a strong relationship with fans. Building long-term relationships, loyalty and improved insights in your fans are key elements to focus on if you’re an artist.

Data analyses
The role of social media in relationship marketing: data analyses
Social media should be used to both send and receive messages with fans. Not as a channel to advertise your latest products. Data analyses are crucial: analyze the data from your social media accounts and discover what people talk about, what they share and what messages they send you. If the data you collect is analyzed, you’ll have a bigger chance of exceeding your fans expectations. For example; if reports show that one of your tweets has an enormous engagement rate, try sending direct messages to all followers that showed engagement with that tweet. Let’s take the day after a big gig, run a report and find all people who commented during the performance. Send them a personalized message, by means of a direct message campaign, thanking them for their support. A personalized message from your biggest idol; who wouldn’t value that?

From CDs to downloads
Shift from transactional marketing to relationship marketing
The past decade has seen a huge shift in marketing activities in the music industry. From CDs to downloads, from downloads to streams. Lower income per transaction.
Asking your fans to stream your new single, how many streams are needed to get a decent amount of revenue? This is exactly the reason why artists overdo it on these kinds of posts: more transactions are needed, therefore more communication is needed. Build a long-term relationship with your fan, increasing loyalty means that the fan will eventually find you when he’s ready.

Go for long-term goals
Long-term goals are more valuable than short-term goals
Obviously, a short-term goal in a marketing plan is sales. Tickets, cd’s, downloads, streams. An artist has to make a living. But relationship marketing goes beyond that short-term perspective: you can’t buy the loyalty of your fans. Don’t ask them to Like you, give them a reason to Like you. Give before you start asking, this will pay out in the long run.