Going on tour? Try these marketing techniques to easily increase your audience and ticket sales, as well as provide a positive, lasting impression:
1. Be a Local
"Posts with a tagged location result in 79% higher engagement than posts without a tagged location" Facebook and Instagram both offer location sharing. When visiting local cafes or businesses, share a post or story mentioning your show and add your location to reach locals and tourists alike with news of what they should do that weekend.
For example: grab a coffee, share a picture of it to your stories with the location tagged and add a caption to separate yourself from the fray: “grabbing a coffee before our show tonight at the venue!” Tagging just the city can expose you to anyone viewing stories related to the city, and tagging the coffee shop will target a smaller group of users who may pay more attention.
You can add a link to your Instagram story with the chain icon in the top, which allows users to easily swipe up and find your site to buy tickets - but only if you have a verified account or more than 10,000 followers.
Hashtags work in the same way as locations, and posts with at least one hashtag can earn 12.6% more engagement. Adding a hashtag to a story can lead to the story being added to a collection of posts under that same hashtag, accruing exposure from outside your follower base.
2. The Piggyback
If your band is on Spotify, view your profile page to see the suggested artists. You can then target users who like those bands on Facebook with Facebook ads. This will boost your posts to listeners who are fans of your genre but haven’t discovered your music yet.
You can also create playlists on Spotify featuring you and other musicians in your genre to help expand your reach to new listeners. Keep it updated, give it a witty title, and stick to your genre.
Playlists help generate exposure for artists as "listeners now spend about half their time on Spotify listening to playlists, either of their own creation or curated by Spotify's editors and other tastemakers."
There's even an official form you can fill out to hopefully move your way onto these playlists, which typically guarantees viral success: "by the time a song lands on Today's Top Hits or other equally popular sets, Spotify has so relentlessly tested it that it almost can't fail."
3. Trickle Release
Creating a cohesive album is great, but you don’t have to release it all at once. Releasing a single song at a time has the potential to earn more hits per song, as each song release can enjoy its own promotable event on social media.
Spreading out these song release posts over time makes it easier to reach your listeners with new content over months, rather than tiring them out by boosting the same post about the album release repeatedly.
"The traditional album cycle still very much exists, but this year’s headlines were all big singles driven largely by streaming. There was scarcely a big hitting quarter four album to be seen,” according to Spotify's marketing manager Brooke Salisbury in 2016.
Additionally, having separate releases for each song can provide detailed analytics: which song performed best on each channel? If your most mellow single did the best on Facebook, you may find that those users are more receptive to those songs and you can use this data for more accurate posts in the future.
4. Event Befriending
Be a cohost of the event on Facebook so that you also have the opportunity to share and boost it with Facebook ads. Similarly, event hosts have the ability to message undecided RSVPs and even offer a chance to win a ticket.
Cohosting means that the event will also be on your page's events list, ensuring fans of your page don't have to root around for a list of your tour locations.
As a page on Facebook, you can also recommend another business page, which exposes your page to new users and diversifies your post types.
- Boost a post with the event link to people in the area to increase reach
- Be active in the event by commenting and replying to posts or offer a chance to win band merchandise
- Live-stream somewhere in town
Video content drives higher engagement on Facebook, but a live-stream will produce notifications that ping your fans and followers - and Facebook Live videos earn three times the engagement than regular video posts.
Facebook has extremely limited organic reach for pages, so you want to have diverse, consistent posts in order to expand your reach. An event, live-stream, and a page recommendation are all unique posts that will appeal to different types of users and help generate engagement, without being repetitive.
Avoid posting more than once a day, too: this will trigger Facebook's spam algorithms and reduce your reach. Instead, aim to earn more engagement on fewer posts.
“To have a successful event, it is important to be embedded in the community. Music fans… always want to leave a positive lasting impact." - JEFF CUELLAR Bonnaroo works fund senior adviser
Donate a portion of your event proceeds to a local charity. It's worth it, in every possible way:
- First, it's kind to do something for the community you’re touring in.
- You’ll then have a third party involved in your event that is similarly interested in the success of your show. They will inevitably promote the event, sharing it with their followers and constituents.
- People enjoy the chance to help others: in fact, 70% of Millennials report that they’ll spend more on businesses that support a good cause. A good show that benefits a good cause? Sign me up.
- Finally, customers have a better outlook on charitable businesses, and charitable acts like this will reflect well on your band for years to come.
Now, go forth with your show and do good - wherever the tour takes you.