10+ Social Media Strategies (for the D.I.Y. Rock Star)
What does being an artist have to do with growing social media?
You may have already deduced our feeling about how critical social media is for the D.I.Y. Rock Star, so we won’t bother rehashing what you already know. —What we want to add, though, is that it takes off-Internet tenacity and creative thinking to TRULY be a D.I.Y. Rock Star and that kind of artistic enterprise has been around since, like, forever—think about the creation, growth, and distribution of techno music and rap (being sold out of the trunks of cars)! Instead, we know that many of you are interested in how we used social media to get to our 37k+ followers on over a thirty-five social media platforms, so we are going to focus on strategies to help you grow your knowledge and, that will further your creative empire by using social media. (Here's our backstory: http://bit.ly/allthethingsprej)
If you were with a major label, much of these things would be done for you, but as people who want to move your own movement forward, you will need to give these all some thought and to take action on as many of these as you can bear.
Get to the advice, alright already!
Okay, here goes; here are the 10+ social media strategies (for the D.I.Y. Rock Star):
1. Make sure you brand your channels to match (use the same colors, name, logo, etc.).
Once you decide on the way you want to represent your brand, you should make all of your channels have the same names, color, logo, artwork, etc. [If you’re not sure what a “brand” means and why it’s important, check out this post (http://bit.ly/2YuHwex ) and/or get this download (http://bit.ly/checkyourbrand ).] Make sure your branding is consistent between all the different ways that you will interact with potential fans. You want them to find you and you don’t want them to be confused as to who you are and what you’re communicating.
Here’s why you might want to use a pseudonym
as a D.I.Y. Rock Star (http://bit.ly/stagenamedrule ).
2. Build one social media platform at a time.
When we first started out about 4 years ago, we had a YouTube channel ( http://bit.ly/youtubesubprejippie ) that had only eBay sales items on it and we had one personal Facebook account. Once we realized the importance of showcasing who we were all the places that we thought we might find fans, we were completely overwhelmed. We started with what we had—mostly Facebook at first—until we learned how to do more with other platforms. By just starting slowly, we were able to see progress and that gave us more confident to branch out onto other unfamiliar platforms and now we are on upwards of 22 different social media platforms. (—If you Google “prejippie,” you’ll see that we’re probably on your favorite social media platform, including Pinterest and Tumblr.)
3. Be on as many platforms as you can set up a profile on (but direct them all back to your website).
Though this advice seems counter-intuitive to the last bit of advice, it really is important for you to “show up” wherever the people that you are trying to reach are hanging out. So, once we started branding and seeing growth on Facebook, we moved over to that dormant YouTube channel (that we mentioned earlier). We tried to direct people over there to subscribe and started making videos to upload to that. After we saw some growth on YouTube, we moved over to SoundCloud, and then to Instagram, and then to Twitter, and so on. Like we said, nearly 4 years after we started, we are on more than 35 social media platforms—including Bitchute.com (https://bit.ly/bitchuteprejippie ) and WeHeartIt.com (https://bit.ly/weheartprejippie )—among others. And we are still in search of even MORE places to set up shop. We mostly use it to send people to our website (http://bit.ly/bpblogsubscribe ) and/or to invite them to engage with us on the ones that we are constantly active (see links at the bottom of this post for our most active list). Here's why you should be one MORE than one social media platform: https://bit.ly/Ep141moresocmedblog
4. Do NOT use your social media as your HQ.
Don’t spend too much time putting all your work onto your social media profile, because you have less control over what your followers will see when they reach your page. Instead, have your own website, where you can control your own content and where you can grow your email list—ahh, the email list; different topic for a different post.
We see sooooo many people dump tons of time into social media and then they do something that, for instance, Facebook doesn’t like, and Facebook will restrict you posting to your own business timeline. —We affectionately call it “Facebook jail,” but that shit ain’t funny, when you can’t communicate, like, or post with your people!
—It’s for that reason that everything that I post on social media reflects what followers can find always available on our main websites (BP and PMG). That way, if we want to showcase a particular song or product, it is always there—front and center—for visitors to find, and does not get buried down in a really long scrolling newsfeed. [–In fact, check out number 19 in our recent Ariel Hyatt post of independent record release strategies: (https://bit.ly/arielhyatttakesblog ).] Think about how folks who built up their MySpace presence felt once it shut down? They had to start all over again someplace new and try to draw back those fans….. Get them to your website and, ideally, onto your email list, so that you can keep them updated on what you’re doing.
5. Do a regular “audit” of your follower growth.
This is where you go through each of your social media accounts—and your email list—and add up your followers to see how much you’ve grown. We do ours roughly once a month, but it gives you a sense of how much you have grown in followers. If you have goals tied to growing that number, then you will want to research and decide what new strategies to try or to do more of the strategies you are already using to improve your results.
This is quite a joy to do for us, since, as I’ve mentioned a kajillion times before, we started from absolutely nothing, but as of May 2020’s count, we are at 23,000+ followers on roughly 22 social media accounts. (See a list of our MOST active accounts at the bottom of this post.) No matter how you’re feeling, once you start seeing that your tribe is growing, you will be happy that your consistent work is paying off in eyeballs and ears on your content.
6. Don’t make being on social media your number one priority.
Don’t spend your day blindly scrolling and commenting on other people’s content. As you might already know, some people use hanging out on social media as a procrastination technique; to keep from doing the REAL work of up leveling their creative empire. That is a trap. Instead, be purposeful about your time, because content creation and networking should come before just hanging out on social media. For instance, I ONLY go on social media in the morning, AFTER I have journaled, gotten in my fitness, and have shared this week’s content. After that, I go on to “network,” but I limit my time and I ONLY go on after I know I have something specific to do—i.e., share 5 people’s posts, engage in a Twitter share thread, or invite people to our Facebook groups. This keeps me from being on there for 3 hours and not knowing where my morning went (which used to happen when I wasn’t clear about the vision for our creative work). You will feel better about your day and life when you are clear about what you want. (If the idea of having a vision is foreign to you, then check out this post: http://bit.ly/visionblooming )
7. Post regularly.
It’s regularity and tenacity that is going to get people’s attention. So, choose a tentative schedule that works for you and start posting on as many social media platforms. What works to grow your tribe is to consistently let people know what you are doing. It will get folks’ attention and will also help you attract people with similar or complementary goals. This is the easiest way to grow your sphere of influence and love.
8. Create a community by sharing other people’s work.
As odd as it may seem, we do NOT flood our timelines with our own material. It overwhelms people and they run away from you. Don’t get us wrong; we DO share every single day, but we share more of others’ creative work. We probably share about 90% of other people’s work and only 10% of our own. That is what encourages other people to keep tuning in to you. We also share cat videos and tutorials and major label music; whatever is appropriate to the profile we are on, but that exposes our personality and passions. It is those things that many people connect with BEFORE they will listen to your music or hang out with you online. Give them something to bond with you, so that they WANT to know what your music sounds like. (If folks liking you BEFORE they like your music is foreign to you, then you should check out this post: http://bit.ly/2YuHwex.)
We do have a place where you can share your creative work: http://bit.ly/diyrockstarjoin
9. Don’t spam your followers.
When you share a link to your creative work, be sure to provide context as to why you are sharing what you are sharing. Don’t just drop and go! By telling us a little about what you are sharing—and by having an attractive thumbnail (I know that this is another topic for another day, but…)—you will invite us to come into your world. Think about it like you are bringing flowers to your date and then taking them to dinner before expecting a kiss on the cheek; it’s the same with attracting someone to enjoy your work. Think about how you can make your song sound enticing to potential listeners before you post it.
10. Engage with your friends and your followers.
Piggy-backing on what we said in number nine, comment on your friends’ and followers’ posts, share their content, and answer questions that are engaging to you. No, this is not you looking for them to do the same with your posts, but it is truly finding the things that you have in common. Again, people usually are curious about people who they have regular conversations with. Have conversations with the people who you vibe with and you will find fans, peers, and just plain people who cheer for your success. This is what is going to get you further in the long run. [When you finally do have a favor to ask—like when we asked you all to vote for our South By Southwest panel last year (http://bit.ly/PickPanelSXSW )—more people will show up for you (because you’ve been there for them as they wished their girlfriend happy birthday).] Not only do we believe in karma, but we believe that we should find some fun in life; this is our way of finding the fun in the people that we are already connected with. Be yourself, but engage when you can. It will bless you in the long run.
11. Bonus tip: Have both a personal profile and a Business Page.
Decide those two personas are going to overlap. (We do share our music and some music biz posts on our personal page, but we do it more often on our business pages and in our Facebook groups.) (For more on the benefits of using a pseudonym for the D.I.Y. Rock Star, check out this post: http://bit.ly/stagenamedrule )
Here's how I went YouTube crazy: http://bit.ly/youtubefrenzy
What do you think?
What strategies have worked to grow your social media following?
What tips are we missing?
We would LOVE to hear about it!
Please share in the comments below.
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