Sunday, December 13, 2009

Which social network is best for promotion?

Question: Yo! It seems like, according to some people, that myspace is dying. People move to facebook which took over the un-hip masses (myspaces was only for computer freacks and alternative freacks of any age). Moreover, many other sitese came out like twitter, reverb nation, I Like etc... Ok, the question is: what should a band do now about internet promotion? Which are today's and tomorrow's most important portals? Which can be neglected? Because there are so many options that take you entire woking days... From:

Answer: The internet has allowed mass communication on a scale never before imagined,so now anyone with an internet connection has an extensive network of potentially the entire online human population at their fingertips, this kind of power was once only in the hands of the prime-time Television networks during events of global significance.Now its routine, just spark up your browser, and its yours.

Back in the mid-90s during the early stages of the 'net bands used free web-page hosting site Geocities to house their website, to host their songs and Yahoo groups to cultivate fan discussions and comments. Basically it was a pain to update 3 separate sites regularly plus, the bands of that era still had the 80s mindset, which was to interact with fans only when a new release was imminent, like every 20 months or so, to generate interest leading to a successful album launch.

The previous generation of bands also had wonderful things called 'fan clubs', where bands would type out and mail a newsletter or maybe even a cassette tape of new music to fans who had signed up and paid for such privileged one-on-one access to their favourite artists.

Myspace was the first site to combine all 3 factors, and it took the music industry by storm, its fair to say it revolutionised how fans have access to bands and vice-versa. Only launched in 2004 its instant huge success came from it being free, and from its 'killer app'- Myspace was the first site to stream music properly without installing extra software. It was a very much a musical revolution. Bands that took adding Myspace friends seriously soon found this new found power of interaction with fans intoxicating. By the same token, it gave fans unprecedented access to the musicians aswell. It was a win-win.

Many new teenaged bands took to this like demons, updating their activities daily or even hourly with fans, this open-ness and interactivity turned what were once mere fans into hopeless fanatics. Without even realising it,they used the power the site gave them to eventually launch successful careers some years later. Its fair to say that most if not all of the Emo and Screamo scene bands of recent years became popular by using Myspace, and are now household names in the metal music scene. Myspace founder Tom Anderson is surely overdue his spot in the Music Hall of Fame somewhere,I seriously think that.

Nowadays of course MySpace is showing its age,every site streams music now, and a generation of folks have migrated to Facebook and the current internet trend of Twitter, but personally I still use Myspace as my first port of call for checking out new bands, because the music is what I need to hear, so its not all doom and gloom for Myspace. Twitter is a hit because its essentially just short status updates- it mirrored the growing massive trend for short SMS texts which anyone with a mobile phone instinctively knows is the quickest way to communicate simple messages to others. Twitter just 'socialised' the process.

Back to your question - in short your answer is YouTube, mainly because Facebook and Myspace are walled gardens, or pretty much closed communities. It seems silly to even mention it, such is the power of the site, but youtube has been quietly revolutionising the entire music industry, as well as the television industry, movie industry and advertising industry. People have no idea of the scale and the power that Youtube wields, it has acheived absolute dominance in the streaming video field, almost by stealth.

Make no mistake- if you are a new band, you need to be filming yourself continuously and posting it to YT, because new music stars are are being born on Youtube, on a regular basis.Biggest recent example might be Susan Boyle, the middle aged Scottish singer failed to even win last years X-factor TV talent contest, but her striking performance later received over 100 Million plays on youtube, catapulting her to global fame. Her debut album was released last week selling 3 Million.

At the other end of the age-scale is Justin Beiber (see pic), a 15 year old teenage pop phenomenon in the USA whose debut album was released last week reaching top 10 on the Billboard chart.As a 13 yr old in Canada he started posting clips of himself singing covers of well-known pop songs to Youtube, which soon earned him a fanatical following of admirers. His clips would generate millions of views, which eventually caught the attention of R&B star Usher who signed him to the Island record label. His whole fanbase was originally created using Youtube.

The future stars of tomorrow will be created on the mobile networks,so an iPhone app which displayed real-time Twitter feeds combined with Youtube video streams from a band would be my best bet for a successful promotion method of your band.

Good luck with it.


Mick Usher said...

MySpace = You're only popular while there's a bunch of folk trying to jam a virtual flyer for their band into your online palm...your actual MySpace friends and fans can probably be counted on the digits of that flyer soiled palm.
BUT you get to hear some fresh tunage so you have to cut MySpace some slack.

FaceBook = The social network that isn't very band friendly ...unless you're Rage Against The Machine.

Twitter = Twitter is seriously missing a trick. The idea of tiny posts is fine, but open this up to tiny demo posts...should be allowed to post <30 second songs - condense your promos into bit sized chunks for extremely busy, attention deficient A&R folk. If your train of thought is pulling more than one carriage...forget it.

adeline said...

Social networks have been disturbing hospitality among humans. Social network has changed the social structure of society, especially in terms of modes or how to interact and communicate with each other. Social engineering is a remarkable phenomenon in the world today. Everyone felt a lot of friends, but they actually grew lonely. However, there remains a positive aspect of these social networks. And that depends on the users themselves