Have you ever wondered how to create your music tribe of super fans with a social media marketing campaign?
For indie artists, fan engagement is the most important part of their workload. It is also the #1 selling point of all social media platforms and the most poorly utilized feature by its top users. Whether you’re from indie pop, rock, or just a proud member of the independent music scene, creating a loyal music tribe and therefore creating super fans is your ticket to a successful scaling strategy.
Platforms themselves have made the social element so simple, that rather than directly engaging the person who is sharing your content, an automated re-post or a “thumbs up” is often sufficient to recognize a supporter’s momentary attention. Entire industries are built atop the efficacy of this strategy. If you have ever engaged with a marketing agency or digital PR they have probably offered services such as community management, direct marketing, content creation, and online reputation management, all of these are a piece of the puzzle that help you, the artist, build your music tribe.
You Must Create Super Fans, The First 100
The first major step in the development of your tribe is your first 100 fans. The ones that will show up to your shows, the ones that will Snapchat when your first gig’s amp burns, or when you shred your first solo. These early adopters of your music are the ones you should nurture properly from the get-go so that as more arrive, they have a community to be welcomed into. Rather than just an exhibit for your work, your music tribe is the “life of the party” and your first line of sharing when your music is released on your channels.
Contact via Content
A lot of socials like Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook will have amazing and genuine content creators, but once the content is made and shared, the follow-through to maximize the artist’s reach is often overlooked. Your content is getting lost in a jumble of posts, and as some platforms will algorithmically adjust feeds based on viewership preferences, others will allow for the content to be lost entirely.
You should see the content as an extension of your voice, you’re saying it, you’re describing it, and you’re directing it. When people interact with it, every like or comment is an opportunity to engage with a person and make them a part of your tribe.
The math behind engagement
Have you ever asked yourself how many people see your Facebook posts? As an indie musician, it doesn’t matter so much that you’re launching a pop or a rock song, your music is reaching your immediate circle and their 3rd degree of separation at its most. When we look at the social media market of 2022 we have these key statistics to know.
- The largest subgroup on Instagram is 18-34 years old, consisting of 62.2% of all users.
- 59% of Instagram users log in daily.
- 1 million Facebook fans bring in an average of 826 likes and 309 comments per post.
- The average engagement rate per post on Instagram and Facebook is 0.98%.
- 91% of active Instagram users watch videos weekly.
- Tag products wherever you can and tag frequently.
- Consider using branded content ads alongside your usual brand ads.
- Using Instagram advertising is a good way to counteract the diminishing engagement rates.
Fan 2 Fan engagement
Fan 2 Fan engagement is rooted in the call to action that you develop on the front lines of your content. Encouraging certain types of interaction is key in making fans not only loyal but to take ownership of the overall wellness of the brand.
The tribe itself can push these types of engagement to optimize the reach of your content.
- Encourage fan comment volume by taking advantage of every possible touch point.
- Use fan comment touch points to bolster brand recognition.
- Having enough variety of tone, language, and calls to action to flow naturally in user conversation.
- Incorporating social language (including emojis) that reinforces your brand voice.
- Celebrating fan success stories
Music tribe must-haves to create super fans
Things as simple as a “thanks for the like, was it the first time you heard my music” can make the difference between a passive one-time encouragement to a lasting voice for your content. As an ambassador of your own brand, it’s your job to spread the news to the masses on how they should utilize the strength of your brand image.
- A clear mission describes the objective of your art. As well as the brand that is illustrating the ideas. And finally how it will reach its goals over time. The mission statement of every artist should be a clear sentence that shows how you’re going to take over your competitors.
- A vision – the brand is a living thing and has an ultimate destination. This vision is something your tribe will share with you, believe in, and help you achieve.
- Your brand should have a slogan – maximize a unique hashtag and make it something that can interact with other ideas online. If the slogan is not relevant to the indie music ecosystem around it then it is useless.
- Your branding colors – pick distinct and relevant colors to your attitude, style, and message. Colors can be used in an ironic way to be controversial but don’t lose sight of your brand’s mission and vision.
Indie music and independent labels have a give-fans-all mentality that is very unique, and when marketing their product, they leverage this type of attitude to maximize every newcomer’s viewership potential. With a well-designed branding mix, this attitude can be leveraged to generate some of the most powerful viewers an artist can ask for.
Fans vs Tribes
A fan will share your posts, like your comments, and buy your music. A tribe will convince others that you, the artist, are the only one that matters. The difference between the two is in fact the zeal that goes into their fandom.
To build a tribe your content needs to be engaging emotionally and most importantly entice people towards action. It’s not about starting a revolution, but as an artist creating a powerful fanship that is capable of mobilizing other fans. After all, what is better than fan pages for an artist, conversations on Reddit about their music, organically generated reviews, or just people enjoying the music live on platforms?
How to build your tribe and create super fans
Creating a music tribe requires the musician to create a segmented marketing mix for their music. Different fans from different backgrounds must be engaged and display a zealous enthusiasm for your music to drive them towards super-fandom where they are compelled to spread the good word.
Start with identifying different networks you can be on and identifying key profiles that can help spread your music. Find the right portals to share information about your upcoming releases and engage them. Friendly, salesy, your style is your own, but what’s important is to be talking to them directly and to be asking the right questions.
Platforms to consider
- Reddit: the land of conversation and arguments
- Medium: bloggers here are friendly, passionate, and committed to good products, if your music has the right swing, don’t be afraid to comment on their work as an icebreaker
- TikTok: the right influencer can make or break a career, if you can find the content you like, reach out to the creator and talk about your sound.
- Telegram: Ironically, this multi-tiered chat service has millions of groups for all kinds of topics. Find the ones that interest you and
We hope this guide to music tribes was helpful, and that you will be on your way to superstardom by following these principles that all indie artists should consider.
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