Facebook has long been the place for bands and artists to cultivate their fans. Before that there was mySpace and before that, fan clubs.
The problem with social media sites is they are not controlled by the artist, and due to this fans are not as engaged as they used to be. Fans can find out everything about an artist just by their daily visits to Facebook and this devalues everything artists post. The latest photos, videos and thoughts of band members are open for anyone and everyone to read thus not maintaining the mystery that even in this day, is required to have longevity in the business. Even the manager of the artist has difficulty helping the artist maintain the right level of visibility when that rogue drummer posts about their toilet habits.
So, how do you recreate the mystique in a digital world that is open for everyone to read? Do you become as elusive as Pink Floyd were in the 70s? The problem with this approach is, with everything publicly available being elusive means being (almost) invisible. There are however, a group of devoted fans that every artist has that can help spread the word and keep the artist elusive but not invisible. But, these fans have been lost in the quagmire of “Likes” on social media networks which in truth doesn’t measure fans, but instead measures please who “just like” you.
There is something you can do about this however. You can get their contact details. It’s that simple. But how do you do that in an environment of social networks that keep this from you? There are many ways, including having a membership system on your website or collecting email address by asking fans to send them to you. You could also collect them using your own social media app just like Facebook, but one that collects your fan details on login.
We at GigRev have built services which include website plugin’s and app based private social networks that allow you to own your fan data again. I’m sure some of you already have apps provided by your record company or apps you have built with free to use online app builders. You may also have found that these just don’t work out for you. But, don’t give up just yet, because you get out what you put in, and a quickly put together apps don’t really do this well.
Apps work, but only when the attention, care and knowledge of the music industry are the drivers for building it. That’s what we have set out to do, and even though I say so myself, I think we have achieved it.