In the last week, I’ve talked with Jordan Kawchuk (Producer of the Radio 3 video podcast, R3TV) and Grant Lawrence (Champion of Canadian music and web radio/satellite radio/podcasting host) before they spoke at panels about ‘web 2.0’, ‘music 2.0’, and ‘the youtube era for musicians’. Jordan spoke to a group at the Western Canadian Music Awards and Grant was moderating a great panel at CMJ in New York – thousands of miles away, but both organizers wanted a lot of the same advice for artists.
This makes me think that there’s a lot of musicians who are still daunted by the prospect of all the tools available to them on the web, who aren’t sure what kind of content they’re supposed to create with them, and who don’t understand why they’re so vital to their future success.
Whether you’re signed to a major label, signed to an indie label, or making music in your basement, you need to do more than make music and put it on MySpace (and New Music Canada, of course 🙂 ).
Here are the basics. I’ll have more detailed thoughts on creating relevance and credibility online in the coming weeks. But the price of entry is this:
You need to blog. You need to use Twitter. You need to use Flickr. You need to use Youtube – and not just for posting your music videos. You need to participate in communities and comment on other people’s blogs.
Why? You need to build a community, communicate directly to them without a filter, and empower them to help make your music and your other creative projects reach more people.
If you’re a music artist looking to get more people to hear your music, looking to tour more to places outside of your hometown, province / state, or want to sell more of your music, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you have a blog?
- If so, are you posting daily? Or at least weekly?
- Are you on Twitter? (Do you know what Twitter is?) Are your tweets creating value – ie: should I as a potential new listener care about what you’re tweeting?
- Have you put anything other than a music video up on YouTube?
- Have you put up any photos on Flickr?
- Do you visit and comment regularly on the blogs of music fans (especially those who write about your genre of music – or even better, YOUR music?)
- Are you using Facebook, MySpace, Upcoming, New Music Canada, etc to post your gigs, album releases, etc?
If the answer to one or more of these questions is ‘no,’ you’re missing a chance to connect with and grow your audience and community. What are you waiting for?