17 Jan '22

Nick Edwards

No country for old marketing

Everyone seems allergic to ‘old marketing’ these days.

What do I mean by ‘old marketing’? Well, here’s an example.

We first noticed this while working as a label for a relatively new artist called Inkara. We used social media promo to grow her audience and get her music in front of new people. When the BBC invited her to play the Introducing stage at Reading & Leeds Festivals and mentioned they would be filming her set, one of our first reactions (after the initial 😱) was that this would be an amazing video to promote her and her music.

So we ran social ads using this clip of Inka performing Beatiful - no brainer, right?

Wrong!

The Beatiful post didn’t perform nearly as well as some of Inka’s more ‘organic’ and natural-feeling posts. In particular, it was trounced by a pretty random Instagram story that featured Inka asking followers the correct way to pronounce ‘Mauritius’ (in case you were wondering, apparently it’s “mao-rit-ee-us”). People weren’t just liking the post, hundreds were clicking through to Spotify as well.

This is only one example of ‘old marketing’ just not hitting the mark any more.

Anything that looks too ‘marketing-y’ or makes people feel they are being sold to often doesn't work.

Is it any wonder why? How many times a day do you see slick and impersonal marketing messages?

People don’t want to be sold to - they want to hear from other, real people. They want to hear directly from the artist.

Based on our experience at Feed, the posts that do really well aren’t necessarily the ones that people expect to do well.

It’s always the content that feels most natural, is in the person’s own voice and avoids being too ‘sales-y’. People aren’t just interested in what an artist creates, they also love finding out more about them and their story.

For example, I would be willing to bet that followers don’t react as well to a static image with some album artwork saying the latest release is out.

Think about the person on the other end - what intrigues them? What makes them want to find out more and click through to your profile, website or Spotify?

A video showing the process of making music, recording it, playing it or just messing around - that’s way more interesting and engaging.

I think this is true no matter what your goals are - the principles are the same, whether you want to build an audience who will listen to your music, buy tickets or simply get more followers on Instagram.

By now you'll probably be thinking “OK, enough theorising. How about some concrete examples?!”. So here are a few more.

Kiskadee

Producer Kiskadee is great at posting about his music, but he also makes sure to give people insight into his process, life in the studio, recordings, performances and more.

By doing this, he keeps a conversation going with all his followers, whether they're fans of his music, fellow musicians or music geeks (or all three!).

mxmtoon

Singer-songwriter mxmtoon frequently posts non-music related content. Sometimes of trips abroad, hanging out with her friends or outfit pictures.

Her posts are not just 'salesy' content promoting tour dates and merch drops. By posting about her life she connects with fans and they get to know her as a person as well as artist. Making them more likely to be willing to buy tickets or merchandise later down the line.

Belle Chen

You only have to look at Belle Chen's Instagram feed briefly to get a sense of what she's been up to - she keeps her followers updated on concerts, writing music, travelling and touring. I love how open and engaging she is on social media, which helps her audience to get to know the person behind the music.

Check out this post from her travels - we get the music, a sense of who she is and what she likes too.

She also uses Instagram really well; a standout Instagram live saw her playing a 'name that tune' session for fans ... all while she was waiting in line at the supermarket.

Anything you've done recently that has worked really well? Or want to chat about your own digital strategy? Head to our website Feed or get in touch

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