Snapchat For Musicians
For a musician trying to reach out to new fans and exposing their work, the thought of yet another social media platform can seem rather exhausting, especially considering that Facebook and Twitter are already pretty time-consuming. While video and photo sharing networks may seem rather “useless” they are not, and trust me you should never overlook them!
Photo messaging platform Snapchat is a particularly hot platform for younger artists, audiences and genres that have arise in the past 10 years.
As A musician, How Do I Benefit?
Snapchat is a great way to share informal moments with fans. Not just what you are doing at the studio, but also hanging out with friends and family or checking out your own favorite bands in concert. Fans will feel as if they are peeking into your life, and that you are connecting directly with them, making the fan-musician relationship far stronger.
If you have given yourself the time to connect with fans on other social networks, it is worth it to give Snapchat some consideration..
The key to Snapchat is to remember that it was designed as a personal medium, so the marketing you will handle is very personal level marketing and cannot appear to be intrusive at all. As long as this is in your list of considerations, and that the content you send is something a fan will genuinely enjoy, then Snapchat can create an organic emotional connection that benefits fans and musicians alike.
Before riding over the how to’s and methods to make some proper use of snapchat take into consideration these next common mistakes and check if you are guilty of one or more of them.
Common Mistakes & Assumptions
Many of us musicians overlook Snapchat as it looks simplistic to some, or just uninteresting, I have even been told that it is “too simple to be used as a marketing tool” but it has also been proven numerous times that these assumptions are wrong.
Here are some aspects to avoid or consider:
- No Audience Targeting.- You may have or may have not heard this term before, it is commonly used to decide the kind of people we want to reach, the ones we consider will like our music, many make the mistake of not even considering it a necessity or they just not even consider the existence of such thing! Remember that the best way in marketing to attract people for a product is considering who is going to need it or want it first, you have to consider a bit of the common factors they could share and why they would purchase (in our case) your music.
As for Snapchat there is an extra plus in play here, ourselves, yes! The way you are can influence a lot, you can even market yourself, someone charismatic and funny usually calls a lot more attention than your “ average Joe”, try to keep your fans engaged with humorous videos and snaps, and if you are not the jokes kind of person attempt uploading snaps of curious things or amazing things.
- Language Targeting.- Do not only target an specific audience and expect a result with that, upload videos and snaps also in your native language and English, or if you are an English speaker and know other language(s) use them as much as possible as it is a good way to amplify your fan base reach and you cover more social field.
- Don’t Only Sell Yourself .- This is a big mistake in many social networks not only Snapchat, but due that Snapchat is more personal, trying to sell a product becomes even offensive to some, although there is a way you can balance this! Post about yourself, post about other aspects you care for, and leave at the very end some occasional snaps where you market your music a little or try to at least convince them to listen to it, only after you have honestly shared a bunch of different snaps, as people will most probably realize that you have to make money somehow!
How does that work? It is rather simple although it might sound tricky, if you see a hundred “buy my stuff posts” you even ignore them you might get to a point where you don’t even notice them at all anymore! Instead if you see a couple snaps about your favorite band chatting with each other, going out with friends, having fun at a Meet & greet and then a random “ check out our new album” snap every 2-3 days it can generate a much larger interest as it is not a common thing from you, make your marketing a precious thing.
As for mistakes these are the most common without going into to much detail, it might seem like your trapped right now but, trust me, we will talk about the most elemental and important part now…
Marketing Strategies That DO Work
As we have already mentioned the mistakes and assumptions many commit towards how to exploit snapchat, here are a few options we have put together that have been proven to work efficiently.
First let me explain the results you will get from marketing in Snapchat, as it is not only beneficial in an economical aspect it is also quite favorable to gaining followers:
- You can use Snapchat marketing as a method to tell your audience about your new music or video
- The second use we are going to give snapchat is mostly gathering fans closer to us, a fan’s attention is a must as a musician, and snapchat is the perfect tool for this, as we mentioned earlier.
- The third and last result we will want to generate is to find out what your audience really wants from your music, hold a simple Q&A in your website and notify them through snapchat (also any other social networks you handle so they all gather in one place to answer you) but mostly snapchat, as a video says a lot more than a photo or a post somewhere else in the internet…
With these three aspects and results we want to create and exploit to its maximum potential, it is time to give you some advice on how to achieve each one, more insight on some of the app functions that snapchat has that can help you and how to strategize your posts so they do not consume too much of your time and are practical, enjoyable and efficient.
Selling Your Music
The best way to sell in snapchat is when you have offers, special events, discounts, or giving something away, as we mentioned earlier, record a small snap video and explain the next characteristics:
- How long will it last: How much time do they have to buy your product/album or anything you are discounting or offering.
- Is There a Limit Of Product: Explain the “x” number of copies left of your album or your merch in sale/discount or giveaway.
- Show positive attitude: record it and sound overjoyed about it, don’t just mention it casually, smile, and tell them to hurry up to buy their copy or check it out at least and spread the word
- Thank You: At the very end say a quick thanks
Here is a quick strategy you can use with the “thank you” part, most artists who have the capacity to discount or giveaway some sort of product, album , merch or anything you can imagine, is a form of celebration as they have reached a milestone.
In snapchat though, you can first upload a thank you snap and tell them to come back at a specific hour the same day as you will give them an amazing newsflash.
You will upload your second snap sharing with them the offer, or giveaway or any form of product selling of your choice that you find reliable.
Giveaways For Followers
Send a challenging snap when you have a wider fan base (we will explain how to attract more people through snapchat in a moment) and challenge them that if your snap reaches “x” number of views you will give away 50 random picked copies to your fans.
You can hold the giveaway on another social network, just announce it with anticipation so all or at least most of your fans are aware of what it is that you are doing through Snapchat.
Making your Fans Feel Closer To You
The number one reason we want snapchat as a social tool.
Although many fail at this stage, there are many artists who do not know how to handle their fans, it does not exactly mean that they do not care for them, they just simply can’t tell what it is they should or could share with them.
Here is where Value Content comes into play, Value content is as it sounds, posting, snapping and recording anything of value to you, if you enjoy it, share it, if you like it, share it, let your fans know little by little your personal tastes and what you like and what not.
I won’t argue with you it can be a little hard at first because we feel insecure if it is alright or not, but trust me, it’s what fans want.
Now a good way to discern if you are not sure what to snap is simple, here are two great tricks:
- Imagine who would do it: Imagine or picture your idol, the one who inspired you to be a musician if he would share what you are thinking you should or you are about to, picture it and imagine your reaction as a fan, then you can have an idea of a possible general reaction.
- Ask your team members: if you are a band, you are not alone and everyone can give their opinion, between all of you you can make a list of several thing each of you want to share individually, and as a band.
Keeping Them Engaged
The reason you have to success at reaching your fans is simply so you can earn support, support is one of the biggest drives a musician has to achieve his dreams and reach or aim higher, to advance to the next level.
Make sure when you share a snap you have some of the following aspects in them:
- Quality: Give them something valuable, a sneek peak into a special moment, recording your new album or even your perspective from the stage you are playing live can be interesting
- Motivation: give your fans a life story, something you believe can touch their hearts or make their day to achieve what they want.
- Shout Outs:not much of an aspect but a tactic is to tell your fans to like your latest snap and record a snap saying random names “shout out to “x” person, hello from the band” things like that give value to you and your fans, as it shows you actually ca
Finding Out What Your Audience Wants
A tricky part of being an artist no matter how big you are is finding out what your audience expects from you as an artist and a general concept they might share in common or might want to see it happen, like a collaboration with another artist is a common factor for pop solo artists.
We can integrate this to our snapchat as we can follow our fans through here and ask them through a video snap to do a “I wish you would” video where they petition or add a suggestion of what they would like to see, this In the case you are seeking for a direct answer.
After they answer and you have watched several snaps, select the possible, achievable, or closer to your reach ones, you can hold a multiple option with the filtered answers and find out which one is most requested with this method ( you can hold the poll on another social network or ask your website designer for adding a small box in your main homepage)
(Due that you can see who watched your snap and who did not, upload a second snap explaining you will only check as many as possible in under an hour so no one feels excluded )
Now for the ones you could or should consider the most because they can represent a new step in your artistic career or at least reach out or satisfy fans are:
- Collaborations: Collaborating with another artist is very fun, you get to experiment being in a studio with someone new who can even give a twist to your natural artistic sound by molding his/her own to yours and vice-versa.
Setting aside the fact that you both market each other, and you both earn a share of money from this collaboration there is also the window to asking the artist if he/she uses snapchat to share and petition to sub to yours.
You both can upload snapchat story of your recording process even and show everyone the hard work you are both dedicating into it.
- Merchandise: ask what they would like to buy! As we mentioned before, if you target your market it is great! But knowing exactly what your market needs or desires to have from you is even better!
You earn money, and you please your fans with a (ex. New t-shirt artwork, guitar pick set, printed logo stickers, etc…) a perfect win-win situation.
- A gig: Nothing earns fans offline better than a live show, and fans always will be ready for the next one, consider the most petitioned cities, we left this at the very end as it usually takes a bit more of planning but it turns just as fruitful as the other two ( maybe even more) This has two pros for snapchat- In-Concert snaps you can share, and the dates you are going to play, if you want to innovate a little, say that if your snap gets “x” number of views you will consider playing on the next destination in your list, and you can even start an express mini tour not too far from where you live.
Building Tons Of Followers
We’ve been talking about how you are going to do this and that with your fans! But maybe you don’t even have any to begin with! And that is fine!
There is no magic formula but there are things that are proven to help a lot, starting with your snapchat code.
- Snapchat code.- It refers to your account number or username, people see it and they can scan it or add you manually by typing in your username.
You can share it in your website and other social networks , take a screenshot of it and post the photo everywhere you can think of you might earn some fans.
The second method to earning fans is…
- Add Nearby.- It is somewhat random, but if you are in a crowd imagine the amount of phones around you! Add as many as possible, once they see you are a musician or your content they might stay and who know.. maybe there are a couple potential fans among the crowd, even in your nearest coffee shop.
The third way you can earn a good amount of followers is inviting people to check it out, maybe you already have some followers on another social networks, you can set a series of steps for them and tell them you will give away 5 random kits of merchandise with your new album included or even tickets for a concert.
Tell them to install the app, look your Username up (post the screenshot we spoke about earlier so it is easier for them to search for you) and explain them you can see who are the people who watch your snaps, tell them you will randomly pick the five people from that list and send them a private snap
(You can even add instructions on how the application works a bit so they avoid feeling like they might win and not be notified about it, this insecurity might happen when someone is completely new to a social network )
Engage With Your New Followers Via Private Message.
Fans purchase from people they trust. It is important to reach out to your new followers at the beginning. You can start out by creating a “welcome video”. Then, on a daily basis, you can send out to new Snapchat followers. This will make you stand out compared to the rest of the marketers who never really engage with their potential fans.
Also, start taking note when certain snaps out stand from others, they can be your “attention tools” with them you can re- engage fans that might be starting to loose interest in your latest snaps, if you uploaded a funny blooper and that was your best snap so far, that is you “ attention tool” and you should upload them only occasionally so they maintain their interest factor.
Involving The Creativity Factor In Your Snapchat World
What is the creativity factor?
In marketing and promoting, there is a huge gap between what it means that is well done and greatly done, and usually the main reason to this is your creativity taking a role, now we have a big benefit here as musicians and that is a form of freedom that what we sell can be attained online and offline and it isn’t necessarily always a physical format.
What does all this have to do with Snapchat you might ask?
Remember how we mentioned you had to give value and reason to the content you upload? Your creativity goes inserted here.
If you can come up with a new way to attract followers that uses the traditional methods with a twist, that is creativity, and that is exactly what you want.
We can’t give you any direct examples but we can give you a few ideas on how to get some notions to start off:
- Molding a Success to be Yours: Step outside the music boundaries and look for the steps a big business has used to gather attention and sells, see if you can adapt them to your artistic situation and see what can be done in similar terms.
- Twist It: How about you start a chain in Snapchat? Some kind of trend, not a dorky or dumb trend! Sophisticated enough to give you reputation and not loose respect from your fanbase.A great example is “quoting Literature” This is a common trend on Twitter for example.( not much of an example but it is a concept that was over used when the blue bird started)
There is always a person who starts and there is no end to it, in your case make something musical, ask your fans to replicate your songs or try to play something they know in a different style ( You can make a contest and invite new people to use snapchat by this method)
- Monthly “x” Thing.- Make your fans compete for some reason every month, this is very common, if their friends see they are in a contest they will wonder who is hosting it and come across you, as a musician this can be tactical to do but in a large scale it can reach a good amount of people.
And it doesn’t have to be a competition, for example you can ask them to pay attention between day “x” to day “x” as there will be a hidden something in your snaps and the top 10 who guess it first win ( Insert Prize here)
Conclusion & Thoughts
Let me start by stating, DO NOT underestimate the power of any social network, if there is people using it, there is a chance to be taken to earn fans or sell your music.
Always make a good research (as we did and compiled here) of how the social network functions for your objectives.
Snapchat is overlooked by many artists so there is still a huge gap for you to fit in and take your time building reputation inside of it.
Remember, Patience is the key and don’t give up too soon, if you are not advancing, be creative, advertise yourself in a new way, and be constant with it.
Snapchat also offers a well balanced social “meal” You can sell, you can connect with fans and you can earn new ones. The three tools to social networking for an artist are well served here.
We expect the article you just read assisted you into your decision whether or not Snapchat is functional, as we have found it is a way more useful tool than many assume and it has a lot of potential still.
We hope you can master it yourself, and help your artistic career with it.
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