Web Presence: How I’ve Built It and What I’ve Learned
Guest Blogger Amanda Duncan is a musician with a love for all things catchy and melodic. Originally published at Grassrootsy.
Hello all! I hope this blog finds you well and taking over the world in your very own way. As independent musicians we have to wear so many hats. Today I will be talking about the Marketing Hat! Haha! One of the most important aspects of our careers is to have an internet presence and its power is extremely underestimated. The more content you have up online, the more you are going to pop up into people’s lives. Even if the masses aren’t paying attention now, when they start coming around you’ll have plenty for them to look at and they will say, “Why am I just finding out about this person now???”
This Is What I Do
Here is a list of things that I do in order to make sure my internet presence is front and center.
1. I post at LEAST 2 statuses a day.
I use ping.fm because it can send my statuses to Twitter, Facebook Personal Page, and Facebook Fan Page. The status is an art form (or at least it is in my opinion). I try to make sure my statuses are engaging so people will want to comment on them. I mix it up between my music and “regular” life. It’s a delicate balance of getting your music out there and allowing everyone to get to know who you are as a person. I rarely ever complain, because, let’s face it, we all get annoyed with the friends who complain about every little thing in their daily lives via status.
2. I try to respond to every interaction.
A simple “Haha!” or “That’s awesome,” or even clicking on the “Like” button goes a long way in the hearts of others. We all know what it feels like to never have a response from someone we look up to.
3. I post a video once a week.
It’s a lot of work, but in the end when someone wants to go on a video-watching binge on my YouTube channel they will be there for a while.
4. I am doing a Project 365.
I am taking a photo a day and posting it online along with a little blurb about it. I post it on Facebook, my Flickr, and my WordPress and Tumblr blogs. It’s a lot of work and dedication, but it has paid off (stories will come later). This keeps friends/fans engaged on a daily basis. There are so many people that I’ll bump into and they’ll say “I love your photo of the day project.” Just proves again whether you think so or not, people are watching.
5. I write a blog once or twice a week (in addition to Project 365).
6. I’m on every social networking site there is.
Even if I don’t use a site much I like to sign up to have the “amandaduncan” URL.
All of this may seem overwhelming, but you can do things in your own way and at your own pace. You can simply post a video a month or a blog once a week. BUT I still highly suggest that you post a few statuses a day (if not more) and respond to your friends/fans.
This Is What I’ve Learned
So, this is what I’ve learned from having web presence: people think that I’m going to be famous and/or a big star. Regardless of what my own reality has been my web presence makes me come across like my career has skyrocketed. Don’t get me wrong, I’m doing pretty well, but it’s always good to make it seem like you are bigger than you really are.
When I gain a new fan they have a lot of my content to keep them occupied for a while.
It shows the world that I’m alive and kicking even if not much is going on in regards to my music. Hence keeping fans engaged until there IS something going on with my music.
There are opportunities being presented to me simply because of all the content I have online. Here are two stories:
Story 1: A few months ago a received an email from a nice man asking me I if would like to add some G7th Capos to my capo collection. Now, I love G7th capos, but why was the company from the UK asking ME if I want free capos? After a few emails back and forth it turns out they loved the way I run my blog (because of Photo of the Day) and they would love it if I posted some photos up of their capos. BAM! No idea how that happened, but man I’m glad it did. They even sent me a bunch of capos to give to fellow musicians. Crazy!
Story 2: Last month I received an email from a writer from Teen Vogue asking me if I could interview about what I thought of Rebecca Black’s overnight success. Again, no idea how or why this was happening. When the interview was over I asked the writer how she found me and she said, “I was just browsing the internet and came across your site and you seemed like a hard working independent artist.” My internet presence apparently kicks major booty and I’m reaping the benefits from my hard work. I was quoted in the 2011 August edition of Teen Vogue, which is out in stores now.
So, it may seem like it takes a lot of money and connections to get certain opportunities in the music industry, but all of the things that I do to upkeep my web presence barely costs me a dime (other than the $100 I spent on my HD flip, which I know will pay for itself one day). My biggest suggestion is to make a plan and stick to it. Make a monthly schedule of when you will post blogs, videos, photos, etc.
It takes dedication, persistence and the desire to want to get to your next level. The main reason why most indie musicians get anywhere is because they have good business skills (or someone behind the scenes is making those decisions for them). Run your music career like a business and you’ll reap the benefits.
AMANDA DUNCAN ONLINE
Reverb Nation: www.reverbnation.com/amandaduncan
[…] So, my children, create! Make beautiful things, and then make more. For you will only benefit from the practice, and, if you’re uploading stuff to the web, your career will only blossom. […]