It was early in 2000s when the first version of my website appeared on the web. I had already realized how important it was. Facebook, the long-gone myspace and several other social hadn’t been invented yet.
I decided to create an unusual website, one that would talk about me, my music, my profession, what I was doing and what I had in store.
In this period, where a wide range of possibilities is available to promote events, music and videos, a lot of musicians or future musicians think that creating a Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc page is enough.
I can’t deny the importance of these tools (yes, I called them tools) since they are extremely useful in direct communications with fans and followers.
But, let’s analyse a couple of points:
- Too often Facebook changes an algorithm, which prevents your fans from receiving your updates unless you promote your post. It might be that they have seen a concert of yours, they liked it and they have decided to follow what you do, but, if they don’t look for your page, your feed might not appear in your home page. Therefore, here is the reason why Musicians like me end up planning timetables, methods and publication strategies, creating video content with less pics, more pics, less words, more keywords, and so on.
What can I gather from this all?
I understand that you’re not spending time on your music, your art; that is the time you should spend organising gigs or working at your next album.
- Twitter, 140 characters, apparently of easy use, but also in this case you should have a fan base using that tool or you could start hoping to become a “trend”. But we don’t like hoping, we prefer facts.
- Youtube has changed incredibly since its beginning; nowadays, thousands of video are posted every second and it has helped creating in musicians the myth that distracts from daily reality: the viral aspect. It is true that some artist have reached popularity thanks to their video turning into viral trends. But my question is: do we really want to base our future career on luck? Or shall we really wait for a WIP (Web Important Person) to share our videos with millions of followers? Shall we honestly let millions of people listen to our cover songs while the dog plays the second voice and we play blind folded, upside down? If you are reading here now, I don’t think and hope so. Music and professionalism are something else.
We could make millions of other examples with other socials. What is the point here?
If you have your website well-indexed in search engines, if it is updated, well-done, eye-catchy and well-organised, you don’t have to be “slave” of any variable algorithm, any trend or ashtag.
You can choose the contents and decide how much time to spend on it.
Obviously, this is a tougher path, the audience should come and look for you and willingly subscribe to your mailing list in order to receive your updates.
(By the way I use this free amazing service: MailChimp ).
I am not trying to “demonise” socials but, as I said earlier, they are but tools, incredibly good tools to bring the audience home, to your website, where you want.
All the biggest experts of music industry agree that every musician should have a personal website for the following reasons:
- Being a PRO: having a personal website communicates how seriously you treat your profession. This also means that you look reliable, professional.
- Everybody needs a point of reference. If I am interested in a new band, it is very likely that I look for their website, I check where they are from, what they play, what albums they released and if I particularly like them, I subscribe to their mailing list.
- Your own experience is put under the spotlights. Your own website is really the only place where a band or an artist can truly show a personal “brand”. Other websites can’t have your charm, while your website is the true place where people can fully live your experience and the charm of your work.
- You have total control. This means that you will never have to worry if people see your updates or if any information is lost in the random visualization. Everything you post will be there until you want it to. You will not have to pay to have your news reach your followers.
Your fans are truly your fans and you would not have to explain them that the algorithm of a huge company in the Silicon Valley decided what they can read or not. It will be you and them the ones to decide.
Your website must be your operation centre, the core where you spread news and information from, in order to share them inside social media.