If you are asking the question above, it probably means you have thrown up your hands to heaven and said, “I don’t like to talk about myself” OR “I don’t have time for social media” OR What does social media have to do with people listening to my music?”
THE EVER-CHANGING MUSIC BUSINESS
First, I want to tell you that the music business changes drastically every 6 months or so. So that means we have all been trying to keep our music careers going through COVID…that’s 18 months not allowing you to perform in person. Yes, that is hard but what has happened is that social media and virtual performances have become your audiences’ sole way of seeing and listening to their favorite musicians!
Do you know it only takes 2 weeks to form a new habit? That means, even as live performances come back, many of your venues will be doing both in-person and virtual tickets.
This means you have exactly 4 months to join and engage a social media music network!
SO, YES! If you want to grow an audience and have more people listen to your songs, you have to jump into some kind of social media. Again, I know many of you are roll your eyes at me and make a huffing sound! Spotify and Apple Play have over 1 billion subscribers combined. So getting on those networks is great BUT how will people know to add you to their playlist? I am doing some type of notices on social media!
This is NOT a blog on what to say on social media but a review for you to choose what social media(s) are right for you.
People want to see and hear the music but their attention spans are shorter than ever. That means putting a video up on YouTube, you better have some compelling visuals in the first 15 seconds of your video, or your watchers will swipe left!
The goal on YouTube is to keep people watching. The algorithms will move you to the section caller: recommended next videos to watch; this is based on the % of the video people who watch. So, it is a percentages game. If you put up a really short video, people only have to watch a few seconds to tell YouTube they should show or recommend that video to others.
Your Titles, descriptions, tags and going live can add to your chances that many more to discover you! Some like to do cover songs because those songs are familiar, and that is really OK. More people may find your version and want to see/hear more.
YouTube also offers a playlist platform and ad campaigns. This is really the hottest network for finding new listeners!
The Instagram network is really the 2nd best way to find new listeners. This is a very transient kind of social media. Filled with photos, 30-second musician presentations, and its network has the most 18-34 users than any other music network!
The IG (INSTAGRAM) Stories really get attention, while regular postings of fun images need to catch attention from a quick swipe to the next thing. I like that one person said, they feel the people swiping on IG are just bored. So remember that when you are posting. A picture really is worth a thousand words!
What I really like is you can now do longer videos on IG TV but they only stay for 24 hours BUT you can easily just pull shorter pieces off through Facebook Creator Studio and schedule other posts. Oh, also, there is a direct messenger feature where you can quickly DM someone through a voice message. That is not only cool but feels really personal.
For those of you who feel like Facebook is on its way out, the pandemic helped Facebook’s re-entry into the music world by offering musicians a quick and easy way to go virtual!
Facebook has made editing and scheduling your posts easy by making Facebook Creator Studio and that service also works with their partnership with Instagram. Yes, they are owned by the same company. Doing quick canvas ads and boosting important posts may get you the attention you crave.
Also, if you are not a photo, quick posting kind of person, starting a Facebook page may be for you. This is a great sharing network for your music announcements, stories, and for weekly, virtual performances. If you look at the statistics, the ages of users are people 25 and above.
One more reason to at least have a presence on Facebook? Every venue I know has a Facebook page and they will want to know you have a FB network to advertise on too!
If you like to post often, from what you had to breakfast to showing fun stuff throughout the day, Twitter is for you. You can get lots of followers who share often and it is OK on this network to link to an outside source like YouTube or Spotify.
This is a site for a much younger audience like 18-24. BUT if you really want to find music fans and have not started a network for your 18 to 24-year-old crowd…go back to Instagram.
The BIG positive to TWITTER is that you can find a lot of college kids on this network too.
SNAPCHAT & TIK TOK
I would say both SNAPCHAT and TIK TOK are for younger audiences 16-24. You can post as much as you want and is great for behind the scene engagements. But I would prefer INSTAGRAM for music audience interaction.
And TIK TOK. You can propel your popularity unexpectedly into a crazy zone, but it will probably be because you did something really fun or started an audience challenge. Yes, you can make royalties, but this is all about fast-moving videos. Also, knowing how to really use great hashtags, will get you attention.
All in all, if you are just starting, I would recommend you start a YouTube page AND either Facebook or Instagram. Go to find a few YouTube videos to learn about these networks before you jump right in. Whatever you decided, just know that it will be almost impossible to grow your audience if you are not on at least one social media platform. I hope some of this was helpful!