A musician’s guide to social media

Wonderboom band


To us normal folk, social media is the perfect way to see what the cool kids are up to, and we all know there’s nothing cooler than a Fender-wielding, bearded muso in skinny jeans. Later today South African rock veterans Wonderboom will stop by to talk about a social media strategy for the band. Here’s what we’ll tell them about social media:

1. Your blog is your HQ

Fans want to know everything about musicians, including what they eat and who their friends are. Take a moment to thank MTV for that. While most social media platforms allow you to share your entire life, your band’s blog should be your social media headquarters. Your blog should have:

  • Your band name as a URL, for example www.wonderboom.co.za
  • A link to each of your band’s social media accounts
  • A Twitter feed widget
  • A gallery with show and promotional images
  • A very visible gig guide
  • A media player with samples of your music
  • A link to an online store where fans can purchase your music
  • An RSS option

2. MySpace isn’t enough

For years MySpace has been a favourite among musos. While sharing music is fairly easy on MySpace, these days all blogging platforms allow you to share music and videos. Your band should be on MySpace, but your MySpace account should be secondary to your blog.

Blogs are fully customisable, whereas MySpace can only be altered superficially. MySpace pages tend to be cluttered and hard to navigate. Load your music to your MySpace page, and add a link to your blog.

Visit Wonderboom’s MySpace page here.

3. Twitter is your friend

While many South Africans seem reluctant to join Twitter, there’s no better platform to share gig information and last-minute changes to line-ups. Twitter is easily accessible from cellular phones and gives fans the chance to interact with the band directly.

Your band’s Twitter account should be active and interactive. The idea is to talk with your fans, not to them. Take a look at Ashtray Electric’s @rudi_cronje and Werner Olckers’ @wrestlerish to see how it should be done.

4. You should have a Facebook group

Facebook is the security blanky of social media. If your fans aren’t on Facebook, they won’t be on Twitter, they won’t read your blog and they’ll probably only come to your Barnyard shows.

Facebook groups allow you to send invitations to shows; share links to your blog entries; post photos and music and to interact with fans. What’s more, your Facebook updates can be duplicated on your Twitter account automatically.

View Wonderboom’s Facebook group here.

5. Foursquare is worth it

Because bands travel all the time, checking in on Foursquare will let fans know when you’re in their area. Your Foursquare updates can be linked to your Facebook and Twitter accounts, which means you can update all three accounts in one go. Do it! Do it now!

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