Musician Social Networking for the Family ManI was called an “idiot” by Michael Brandvold Marketing.
I was listening to one of the many music marketing podcasts by Michael Brandvold (mostly good podcasts BTW). I think it was the one with David Meerman Scott. They mentioned Twitter. Then they spent five minutes ranting on how stupid musicians were who didn’t reply to fans on Twitter.
After listening to the rant, I opened up Twitter on my iPhone. I had about 70 replies to my Twitter posts and one message. All were unanswered. I hadn’t been on Twitter in six weeks.
Because of that, I was stupid.
Or… Is it that I think Twitter sucks and is a colossal waste of time.
While I do lean more to the latter statement, that’s really not the issue. Thirteen years ago when I first published The Bards Crier Music Marketing Ezine, I responded to every email. I preached that in my newsletter too. I still believe you should respond to every comment that comes in.
However, my inbox currently has about 50 emails from fans who I haven’t answered yet. I feel terrible about it. But there’s a reason…
The simple fact is I’m a family man. I’m married. I have a two-year old daughter. I take care of my daughter full-time when I’m not on the road.
Oh! That’s a good excuse, right!?!
Hey! But what about all those evenings I spend watching my favorite TV shows? All the marketing books say if you don’t have enough time, then stop watching TV and do some work!
Yup. That’s brilliant advice for the self-righteous, single person who cares about nothing but their career. But what about those of us who realize that that little time in front of the tube, WITH MY WIFE, is family time. It’s one of the things we do together after a long day of work.
Don’t get me wrong, I sorta agree with Michael and his co-hosts. When I was single, I worked sixteen hours a day, seven days a week, either making music or promoting it. But that technique DOESN’T WORK for the family man. We have different priorities. Family comes first. I don’t get a lot of time with my wife. So dammit, I’m gonna take it.
So how does a Family Man build a successful music career with social networking?
4 Simple, Non-Time Consuming Social Networking Tips for the Family Man
I’m sure I’m not the only one with time constraints for social networking. So I devised a sensible plan that any musician can use whether they have a ton of time or just 15 minutes a day.
1. Pick Your Social Network
Which medium works best for you? Personally, I hate Twitter. It’s not a good forum for me to converse with fans. So I’m not gonna do it. Google+ has too few fans on it. Pinterest–WTF?!
My favorite social networks are Facebook and Instagram. I use Instagram only for creating cool pictures to post to Facebook. So Facebook is MY social network.
What about you? What works best for your schedule? There are a lot to choose from. Is yours Facebook, Twitter, Soundcloud, Youtube, Reddit, Instagram, or what? Pick one.
Let’s rephrase that. Pick ONE!
When the next social marketer comes along and says you should be on… BlahBlahNetwork. Tell ‘em to suck it! Or just ignore them. Because if theirs is the end-all-be-all for them, that’s great. But we are all unique individuals. So do what works for you!
2. Post to Your Fan Page Once a Day… Tops
None of those *great* social media marketers offer any solid advice on how to communicate with your fans. Is there a formula? I have one–post ONE comment every day. No more. No less.
My reasoning stems from the time I spend on Instagram. Whenever someone posts 3-5 pictures at a time, I get annoyed. I like a variety of pictures posted by different friends throughout the day. Rarely is there variety when someone posts 3-30 times on Facebook.
So that’s the best solution. Keep it simple. Post once a day.
3. Make Your Post Engaging
Every social media marketer out there says the same thing. Post something engaging. There’s a lot of good advice on that. Videos, songs, funny things you find on the net, road stories, anything that’s new… Also ask fans for feedback and to share your posts.
If your post IS engaging, fans will respond. If not, come up with something new and interesting tomorrow. Don’t sweat it today.
If your post does engage fans, then…
4. Respond to People Who Respond to Your Post
Do it at least 2-3 times during the day. Show that you’re interested. And remember to fan the flames. Great music marketing is really about getting your fans to talk to one another. That’s what builds excitement. So use those 2-3 responses to open a conversation among fans.
Once you make those 2-3 posts, let it go. It’ll either grow on its own, or it won’t. Either way, you don’t have time for it.
Oh! I should point out there is one more tip.
5. Review Your Choice of Social Networks
It wasn’t random chance that made me determine that Twitter sucks. It happened by using the service. I tried switching entirely to Twitter. It just didn’t appeal to most of my fans. I did that with Google+ too. Again, failure. I stopped using those sites because they did not work for me or for my fans.
Every few months, you should take a step back and look at how your chosen social network is performing. Are you engaging your fan base? Or is it just wasted time? If it is wasted time, then it’s time to find a new social network that works for you.
Congrats! You’re done for the day. Go spend time with your family!
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