For the millennial generation and those younger, social media has revolutionised the contact with friends, brands and celebrities & artists.
For the music industry in particular, the likes of Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube open up a multitude of possibilities to engage with fans on a personal level. In short, social media is a musician’s best friend. The potential benefits of effective social media marketing are vast: connecting with fans, reaching new ears, increasing sales, promoting upcoming tours, driving traffic to music videos and much more. All of this can be achieved at scale, offering a captivating marketing channel for artists to engage and drive advocacy with fans.
Here, we explore the success of five recent social media marketing campaigns released by some of today’s hottest artists.
The “Avicci Begins” campaign was designed with the objective to attract new fans in readiness for the new album release. Making the most of Instagram by taking advantage of the free features on the platform, Avicci was able to reach his fan-base with very little financial outlay, but gained maximum results. Within just five days of releasing the campaign, Avicci received over 220,000 likes from followers worldwide.
Disclosure celebrated the release of their second album by creating a Heat Map using Twitter, called “Disclosure Moments Map”, showcasing their most engaged tweets worldwide. Followers were encouraged to Tweet about the new release using #Caracal and would subsequently be part of the live, interactive heat map. Encouraged by the opportunity to have their Tweets featured globally, fans continued to engage with the campaign which organically raised awareness of the album release. Within just a few days, Disclosure increased their Twitter following by 63%.
3. One Direction
Before embarking on their hiatus, One Direction set out to deliver a campaign that placed their fans at the heart and showed the band was truly unified. Put simply, they wanted to say “thank you” to their loyal fans.
Partnering with Google, the band built a mobile site within Streetview that delivered 14 days of surprise interactions leading up to release. Items appeared daily in the Made In The AM space (a ‘fictional’ room shot with a 360° Google camera). Fans moved about the space to find new items which, when clicked, delivered exclusive IGs, videos, images and audio. Once inside, fans were able to share content tagged with #MadeintheAM to boost campaign visibility.
4. Iron Maiden
Iron Maiden’s The Book Of Souls was their first studio album in five years and first ever double album. Announced mid-June with just the front cover, track listing, track lengths and songwriters of each song, their global fanbase was sent into a frenzy trying to piece together what the album might sound like.
Assets were limited in order to retain as much mystery as possible around the album, until an animated version of the album cover complete with a 27-second guitar solo was released via Facebook Twitter and YouTube. Fans went into a frenzy, resulting in over 1-million combined views. Later, the music video for “Speed of Light” was released followed by a re-launch of the bands official YouTube channel with a further 19 of the bands most popular videos added. A web game was also created and released one week before the album launch, receiving over 250k visitors which drove significant pre-orders of the album.
5. Jess Glynne
Breakthrough British musician Jess Glynne partnered with Instagram to create a custom site where fans could download lines of lyrics from an unheard song from Jess’s album. The download also included instructions on how to pass the lyrics across the screen. These fans were then encouraged to upload their videos to #GaveMeSomething and the best ones were edited into a full-length video, with Jess starting off the chain of fans passing lyrics to one another. This video was then premiered exclusively on Jess’s Facebook page in line with the track being released on iTunes & Spotify.
As these examples demonstrate, social media provides artists in the music industry with the perfect platform to engage with their fans and build a following.
Not only does social media allow artists to directly and frequently communicate with their fans, it also gives them the ability to influence their actions. Recognising the importance of fans and rewarding them for their support and dedication is essential, but having the ability to take advantage of the benefits of social media is even more crucial to an artists success.
Social media marketing campaigns are essentially about using social media to increase word-of-mouth publicity and gain control of the fan base. By gaining control and establishing authority via social media, an artist can considerably increase their chances of long-term success.