One of the most important things that your band needs to be doing is going live. If you aren’t going live then you are shooting yourself in the foot – it’s really as simple as that. When a band goes live, that post is almost always one of their top-performing posts ever. Obviously, after the first time, it becomes a little less effective just because that’s how these things work, but still – it should be a key part of your strategy. If you are able to connect with fans live then they are going to want to engage with you more. Furthermore, if people in the industry see you going live then they are going to appreciate that hustle. Finally – if you do it regularly it will all just start to come naturally and lead to a much more fluid overall experience. So, let’s get into why you need to do this and the strategies around it.
Going Live Gets You Seen
Like I said in the industry – frequently when a band goes live for the first time it is among their most viewed posts ever. You don’t even need to hype it. For instance, we have had unannounced live sessions on the Ripple Music page that have turned into posts with thousands of views, reactions, and comments. People just like seeing live content, because it lets them feel engaged without having to leave the house. Fans can feel closer to their favorite bands than ever before and do so through the power of live content. If you aren’t able to routinely do this and engage then you are falling behind. Look at someone like Matt Heafy from Trivium – live stuff is a huge way he stays connected with fans and it’s only paying off.
Going Live Gets Engagement
The coolest thing about going live is that people can ask you questions and you reply in real-time. This leads to better engagement overall. After if someone is routinely interacting with your page then your page will show up more in those peoples feeds. It’s really that simple. Furthermore – you need to remember that the whole point of social media is to take a “one to many” experience and make it feel “one to one”. This is a great way to do that. And if people see that you are eagerly engaging with the scene around you, they are only going to want to dig in deeper with your overall approach. Band life is hard and if you make yourself inaccessible then people aren’t going to give a shit. However, if you prove you care about the fans regularly then things will only improve. This is how you win over fans – one at a time.
People In The Biz Know The Previous 2 Points
Here’s the thing. People in the music industry like seeing bands who hustle because it means those bands are going to make an effort to sell units. Sometimes you need to do things not just because it allows you to win in the short term but because it shows people in positions of power that you are worth investing in. It’s hard to find bands who are worth investing in. A lot of bands lose their labels money. You want a label to see how hard you are working and that you are NOT going to lose them money. If you can do that then you know that you are on track for some good shit that will lead to heightened productivity across the board. The bands who can’t show how hard they are working though usually don’t get signed at all.
Going Live Gets Easier
This is the reason I know a lot of you guys don’t go live – you feel self-conscious and are afraid people will judge you. Well first off – people are already impressed that you are going live. I’ve had known musicians tell me that they admire my courage in going live. These are motherfuckers who play in front of a thousand people a night. They can’t muster it within themselves to go live. This is the sort of brutal reality we face. Going live is scary and it can be hard. But guess what. It gets easier. I’ve been going live basically every weekday for months now and I am not only super comfortable with it, I’m also actually excited to do it most days because I know I can bring some value and get some new fans. So give it a shot on your own!
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Matt Bacon is a consultant, A&R man, and journalist specializing in the world of heavy metal. Having worked with everyone from Glam Rock icon Phil Collen of Def Leppard, to post Black Metal titans Alcest, by way of legendary thrashers Exhorder as well as labels including Prophecy Productions and Ripple Music, he has dedicated his life to helping young bands develop. Having started his own blog at the age of 14 he views his career in artist development as ‘a hobby that got out of hand’. In 2015 he formed Dropout Media in order to better support the artists he loves. We sit here now, years later with countless tours booked, records released and deals signed, and loving every minute of it.
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