Thriving Outside the Big City as a MusicianBy -
Estimated reading time: 2 minutes
Forget the myths. You don’t need to live in New York or L.A. to become famous. It didn’t work that way for R.E.M., playing their way through the small city of Athens, Georgia. There are some great ways to get more fans without having to book a world tour.
Get out there and gig
It’s the old-fashioned way, and it’s the best. No matter the how big your online presence gets, fans will never know what you’re all about until they can see sweat dripping off your face. Just remember two rules: Start small, and start locally. That will lead you to…
Become a fixture in your home town
There is something to be said about the fact that the Beatles played sold-out performances at Liverpool clubs before anyone in America knew their name. They were Liverpool’s band first. Don’t try to conquer to world right out of the starting gate.
This “social media” business
You may have noticed this thing called social media that all the kids are raving about?
Of course you know the value of social media. But what you may not realize is that there’s an unspoken code of behavior on various platforms. Fans will expect you to adhere to it. For example:
- Facebook should be a professional platform for news and announcements. Forget the pictures of the cat sitting in the guitar case.
- Twitter is the place for fun stuff and mini-updates. Keep it band-related. No politics.
- Instagram is where you get to play around a bit. Feel free to post pics from last night’s after-gig party. Put a more human face on your image.
- Tumblr is your personal soap box. Got an opinion? Post it here. Engage your fans and solicit their comments. Don’t forget to respond to them, for…
Decrease the distance between you and your fan base as much as possible
Yes, that’s a pretty long heading, but read it carefully. Read it again. Building a fan base is like growing a plant. It doesn’t happen overnight. It happens in stages and only through careful cultivation and diligence. If you want to get more fans, you must remember that this is the age of interconnection. Encourage fans to share things you post. Engage them in dialogue. Hold contests. Don’t be afraid to send out a personal email every once in a while to thank a fan for his or her contribution or loyalty.
Are you a small town musician? What steps have you taken to help your band thrive?
See Also: 4 Steps to Getting Better Gigs