Fanbase is something that every musician strives to achieve. It says a lot about success, recognition, and affirmation that you are doing the right thing. It is also a source of powerful support that goes a long way in establishing your image as an artist.
An excellent example of music fan loyalty is Justin Bieber’s fanbase that is the most devoted fan base in the world according to People Magazine. Being the most loyal fandom, his fans make sure his albums and music videos stay top trended on Twitter as soon as they got released.
It is undoubtedly great to have thousands of views on YouTube, but not everyone, who lands on your page, or clicks your YouTube video, automatically joins your fanbase. It takes several steps that come before that. We call it the music fan engagement cycle. Knowing the steps of this cycle will give you more ideas on how to get fans.
The music fan engagement cycle
Think of that as friendships. First, you meet someone and communicate with them. Then you see how much you have in common, and usually, that lays a foundation for friendship. After that, you go to school and parties together, i.e., you share the experience.
A similar thing happens to your fans when they are evolving from your one-time listener to a loyal supporter. They connect, they receive, they relate, and elevate.
Here is what you need to do to make that happen.
It all starts with a connection. You need to find the right place, time, and way to connect with your listeners. This is when you create a catchy music video, engaging ad, or appealing message on social media. The goal of this stage is to get attention.
When the goal is completed, the result would be either video view, ad click, or a bunch of likes under your posts.
An excellent example here is how Coldplay connected with their fans through Instagram Stories during the Coronovirus crisis.
At this stage, you deliver your product to your customer (listener). Your product can be your music, performance, or any other content you want to share with your audience. This is when they listen, reflect, and relate to what they hear. This is the stage when your listeners usually decide to know you better, so they need to receive your message well and be wow-ed by it.
If the goal is reached, you will get YouTube subscribers, Instagram followers, new sign-ups for your email newsletter, or new follows on other platforms.
Do that one more time
At this stage, you need to make your listeners like you enough to repeat their actions. To do that, you need to continuously provide the content your listeners fell in love with in the first place. This stage is essential because of its memorizing effect.
The goal is to provide enough value so your content will get shared with the possibility to attract more attention from similar-minded people. If your listeners share content, it means they relate to your music. This means that they are one step away from the last phase of the fan cycle.
This is the last stage that converts a listener to a true fan. It is the time when your musician-listener relationship reaches a new level. At this stage, you need to show your listeners appreciation. This is usually when free giveaways and contests happen. They allow listeners to get rewards for being loyal and tuned to what is happening in your music career.
For example, Machine Gun Kelly asked his fans to design a new logo and received over 3000 suggestions back.
These four stages show how to get fans and lead to ultimate fan loyalty. Loyal fans purchase your music, tickets to your concerts, merchandise, and support you in many other ways. While it takes time to build a loyal fanbase, the result is worth waiting for. Make sure to keep this cycle in mind for your next music marketing strategy!