Category: social media marketing

Flipagram: The Music Focused Social Network

By NationWide Source - Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

At Source, we want bands to build sustainable careers. The path to a long career in the music industry is a difficult one, but we’ve found two things that are key for independent musicians: great content (music, video, graphics, website, art) and great fan engagement.

We know that in the modern music industry, the intersection of these two keys elements is often social media

We get that posting to social media can be tedious and keeping up with all the new trends and sites can be like drinking water out of a fire hydrant.

That’s where Source comes in. We want to review these services, try them out for ourselves, and then let you know when we think a new social media site is on to something. And that brings us to…

You might not have heard of Flipagram yet, as it is still a growing social network. However, it’s gained traction in recent months, especially with musicians and music fans.

Flipagram’s main use is to make montages of pictures and video, and set them to music. You can also create a montage and record a voiceover. Or choose music, and film a funny video of you lip syncing.

It was designed specifically to integrate with music, so it has some benefits for musicians that other social networks don’t. If your music is available for download in iTunes, a 30 second preview of your song will probably be available for Flipagram users to sync with their “flips.” If your song is used in someone’s flip, a link is posted in the caption to purchase that song on iTunes or listen on Spotify.

Even if your music isn’t on iTunes, if it’s downloaded to your phone, you will still be able to use it in your Flipagram.

Flipagram as a Social Network

Flipagram’s first purpose is as a social network. They have millions of users and all of those users have one thing in common: they love music.

Or at least, they like adding music to their videos and pictures.

Which makes Flipagram a great social network for musicians!

Flipagram also makes it easy to share content. You can follow other users, like their content, and “reflip” their videos.

Flipagram’s demographic is very young, so if your target age group is over 30, this might not be the social network you want to invest your time in. But if teens are listening to your music, it might be worth it to see if your fans are on Flipagram.

Even if Flipagram isn’t your social media bread and butter, it can be used to create good content for your other social sites!

Flipagram as a Content Creation Tool

Flipagram’s visually appealing videos can be shared across almost all social platforms. They are a great way to show off pictures from your last photo shoot, or recap each night of your tour. You can create a flip of all your awesome studio selfies, and use it to preview your unreleased single.

You can even get silly and record an embarrassing lip sync video to make your fans laugh. Try promoting a show by adding text to a picture, and playing one of your songs in the background.

Since visual and video content gets higher engagement rates on Twitter and Facebook, feel free to share your flips to both those networks.

Flipagram will even time your videos specifically to Vine and Instagram’s limits, if that’s where you want to share your flip.

So if you’re ready to experiment with a new content creation tool/social platform, Flipagram is probably the right place for you!

Do you use Flipagram? Has it helped to promote your music? Let us know in the comments below!


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How To Find New Fans AND Make Social Media Updates Easy

By NationWide Source - Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Everyone wants to make their life a little easier. Especially independent musicians. From being the artist to the tour manager to the PR specialist, indie artists have a lot on their plates. So when we find a tool that frees up a little of your time and does its job well, we get excited.

Enter Bandsintown.

Bandsintown is a website and app that lets music fans track their favorite artists. Then it lets those fans know when the artists they tracked comes to town. 65% of all touring artists in the United States use Bandsintown, and they have over 120 million fans subscribed to their service. For the artist, it’s an easy tool to use. Bandsintown adds a “Tour Dates” tab to your Facebook page, and you can manage everything from there. It’s a simple concept that has some great features. So let’s dive into why Bandsintown might be a good tool for your band.

Social Media Updates

A few weeks ago we posted a blog about ReverbNation, and it warned against letting third parties automatically post concert updates to Facebook for you. We cautioned against using this feature on ReverbNation primarily because there was no way to control these posts, besides turning them on and off. They tended to fill up artist’s Facebook and Twitter with duplicate content that had the potential to drive fans away.

This is not the case with Bandsintown. Their automatic posting feature has tons of options that let you control exactly what is posted.

If you choose to turn these posts on in Facebook, you can also target them geographically. This a great feature. It makes sure you’re not bothering all your West Coast fans with your extensive touring in the Northeast.

Post to Reginal

It’s also notable that the “Tour Dates” tab allows you to upload a custom video header. This is great news, because it allows your fans to engage with visual content before they browse your tour schedule. It’s been shown that visual content (graphics and video) tend to create higher response rates with viewers, so having this built into the page where your shows are displayed is a great feature.

Screen Shot 2015-07-13 at 11.55.56 AM

Fan Analytics

Fans are the lifeblood of any musician. And having data about those fans can mean the difference between a successful tour or playing to empty rooms every night. If you have over 100 trackers (fans) in Bandsintown, you can receive fan analytics.

Probably the best feature in these analytics is the fan heat map. This tool allows you to see where the fans that track you live, where fans who track similar artists live, and the locations of fans who have RSVP’d to your shows. This helps you to create a tour schedule that will have the most impact for you.

Heatmap

They also create a list of the top 100 markets for your live show based on the number of trackers in each city, and show you a graph of actual RSVPs for your shows vs. people who are interested in attending.

RSVP vs. Interested

Google Loves Bandsintown

Bandsintown has a nice looking widget that you can embed onto your official website to display your tour dates. This is handy because you only have to upload your show dates once and they will be live on your official website and social media.

Another bonus is that Bandsintown has partnered with Google to streamline the ways that events show up when you search for a band. Since Bandsintown and Google are buddies, all your show information is easy for Google to read, and shows up clearly.

Screen Shot 2015-07-13 at 2.08.05 PM

Another benefit to Bandsintown’s relationship with Google is YouTube Cards. YouTube hopes to replace annotations in videos with small rectangular boxes called cards. These cards are small pictures with text, and will display on desktop as well as mobile browsers. You can link these cards to your official website if you’ve already affiliated your YouTube channel with your website. However, if you want to use YouTube cards to sell anything, you have to use a retailer that has already been approved by YouTube. The good news is that Bandsintown is on that list.

Hozier YouTube

But the best news about this feature?

When you use Bandsintown on your YouTube card, the card will link directly back to your website.

This is great news for artists, and is vastly different than many third party applications that will take your fans to their website instead of your own.

What Not to Do With Bandsintown

Just like any other online tool, there are some things you need to be careful of when using a third party app to help you out.

  • Don’t let Bandsintown social media posts take over your profile.  Just because the social media posting feature works well doesn’t mean it is a replacement for actual posts created by you. Even though Bandsintown gives you lots of posting customization options, if all your fans ever see are these posts, they will probably check out pretty quickly. You can read our blog for tips on managing your social media profiles here.
  • Don’t let Bandsintown gather all your fan data for you. Although they have some great analytical tools, you don’t ever want a third party to be the main way you gather information about fans. If third parties are the only way you’re collecting fan data, if they ever shut their doors, you will be left high and dry with no way to communicate with fans.
  • Don’t Let Bandsintown Emails Replace Your Regular Newsletters. It’s great that Bandsintown will automatically send your fans an update when you’re playing in their area, but a personal newsletter written by you is a better way to engage with fans. Many email newsletter services also allow you to geographically target your email audience. Using Bandsintown and your favorite e-newsletter platform in conjunction with each other can optimize your fan interaction, and help get those fans out to your shows.

Overall, Bandsintown is a well built, professional tool that can help artists manage the planning and promotion of their shows, and I would recommend it to almost any artist. But as always, do some experimenting and find out if this app is something that will work for you and your music. If you want more information, you can check out Bandsintown’s official website here.

Have you used Bandsintown? What are your favorite features? Has it helped you to plan more effective tours, and get fans out to shows? Let us know in the comments below!




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