It may be a busy and demanding time for a musician, but letting your marketing slip because you're on tour is a huge mistake. Here we look at some key tips for how artists can keep their marketing game strong while on the road.
Guest post by Ainsley Lawrence of Dotted Music
Going on the road as a music artist is an exciting, busy, and even exhausting experience. You’ll be playing a lot and may have other obligations, too, like album signings or meet-and-greets. It’s a lot to juggle, and it’s easy for your marketing efforts to get pushed to the side during this busy time.
Letting your marketing go while you’re on the road is a mistake. When you’re touring or simply traveling for leisure, you’re in an ideal setting to create some unique, memorable marketing content for your social media accounts, blog, and other channels. While you don’t have to focus entirely on marketing during your spare time, there are a few ways you can incorporate it into your daily routine.
In order not to use too much of your own data, look for public wi-fi options. If you use public wi-fi, though, beware of potential security issues. Hackers who are also accessing the same wi-fi may be out to steal your personal information. When you’re on a public connection, never enter any personal information, like your credit card numbers, banking login details, or even your home address. A public wi-fi connection may ask for some basic information when you first log in, such as your name and email, but if it’s asking for more details like a home address, this could indicate a hacker is at work trying to steal your information.
Public wi-fi may be fine for checking social media or doing some internet searches, but for any other activities like making an online purchase, you’ll need a more secure connection. The good news is that you probably have that connection right at your fingertips in your phone. You can use your phone as a mobile hotspot, creating a secure wi-fi network that can support up to five mobile devices such as your laptop. Keep in mind that any data these devices use while online will come off of your phone’s data plan, so be conservative with your use if you don’t have unlimited data. In a pinch, your phone’s hotspot can keep you connected when public wi-fi isn’t ideal or isn’t available. If you’re out of the country, purchasing a local SIM card is also a great option to stay connected.
Collect Content Based on Your Travels
Your blog and website also need regular updates, and being on the road is one source of some great content material. Update your website and blog with your tour schedule, upcoming song or album releases, and any positive press you get while on tour.
Think about the types of content that your content marketing strategy would benefit from. Depending on the venue, you may be able to bring your phone on stage and get some unique shots of the crowd, or have someone take some shots of an album signing or a special interaction with a fan. You can include some fun things, too, like photos of you exploring the local area. Geotagging your locations is also a great way to connect with the fans in cities you are hitting; you can get them hyped for shows and ask for local recommendations you can check out while in town. All of these types of content help to make you more personable and unique in the eyes of your fans.
Don’t forget to share some of your own thoughts about being on the road, too. You might start a nightly social media post where you reflect on the day, or blog about the tour week-by-week on your site. You can also interview your bandmates about what they’re most excited to see or do in your next destination town, helping to build some fan excitement about the next show. Even when you’re not on tour, you can still share any traveling adventures you find yourself on. Fans love keeping up with their favorite artists’ lives, so anywhere you are headed is an opportunity to engage with fans and create content.
Focus on Social Media
When you’re on the road, you’ll have plenty of material and opportunities to create fresh social media posts, and you can take your fans through the experience of being on the road with you. Backstage photos, rehearsal shots, short clips from a soundcheck, and photos of you meeting fans all make for great social media material. Even if you don’t have time to post live, take photos and videos and then catch up again once you’re back at the hotel, on the bus, or on your way to the next venue.
When creating posts, go for quality over quantity. That perfect shot or well-thought-out post will get more engagement and better results than five or six low-quality photos. Post to engage with your audience and give them quality content that they want to see, not just because you feel you need to post something.
While you’re on the road, take some time to connect with locals. Ask your social media followers for recommendations on things to see or do in their area. Geotag your photos for social media, tag concert venues, and post thank you photos after each gig. You can establish a personal connection with your audience this way, and fans who have that connection are more likely to be fans for life.
Marketing doesn’t have to be a huge task you need to accomplish each day, but keep it in the back of your mind and work on some of your marketing when you do have some spare time on the road. Good marketing is important to your survival as a musician, and the efforts you put into marketing now could help make sure that there’s enough demand to get you out on the road again soon.
Bio: Ainsley Lawrence is a writer who loves to talk about good health, balanced life, and better living through technology. She is frequently lost in a mystery podcast or on the hunt for the best mac n cheese in town. You can follow her on Twitter @AinsleyLawrenc3