CONVERTING SOCIAL FOLLOWERS TAKES TIME
No matter how many followers you have, you gotta be patient
Social media numbers teach many lessons (even that they can easily be faked, which I wrote about in the paid subscriber only ANTISOCIAL email this week).
Carter Vail is quirky musician I follow on Instagram. He’s not a metal guy at all, but he writes some catchy tunes that I think any music nerd could appreciate.
He’s got the numbers that most any independent artist strives for:
137,000 Instagram followers
Reels with 35K, 100K, even a MILLION views
He started his Patreon in December 2022, and posted to it twice. In the new year he’s been promoting it through IG (and elsewhere probably), and posting a bit more, and he’s now at 13 patrons and about $65 per month (before Patreon and PayPal fees).
The lesson here is that even with 137K followers and millions of Reels views THIS SHIT TAKES TIME.
Remember, social media can be a full time job (go look - there are job listings that pay lots of money for it).
So if you’re an independent artist / musician / photographer / band / producer - you can't expect full-time results without the full-time effort.
I know this isn’t a SOCIAL MEDIA newsletter, but I’m 100% in favor of using social media as the delivery truck to my own stuff, and I’m sure you are, too.
So control what you can control:
Post consistently. Schedule posts if you have to, but make sure you’re putting up something every day or so.
Make it easy for people to support you. Link to your Bandcamp, have a Patreon or a Substack, and make sure your online store is working.
Focus on getting people to your website. This should be the hub for all your operations; your store, Bandcamp, Patreon, tour dates, news - get in the habit of keeping it updated and fresh!
Offer fans a reason to get on your email list. Exclusive deals, pre-sales, behind the scenes reports, tour diaries! For inspiration look at the editorial features all the music sites.
Social media is the food court, and you don’t wanna hang out there all day.
It’s time to leave the food court at the mall.
Your art is your restaurant.
You set the menu and you set the hours. You adjust the lights, the atmosphere and the vibes are up to you.
Below are a handful of bands, media outlets, notable characters, and reaction channels with Patreon pages.
Go check out what they’re doing, and how they’re promoting it on their websites and social channels.
William Ramos, 1,081 patrons
While She Sleeps, 1,017
Two Minutes To Late Night, 854
Banger TV, 720
Ne Obliviscaris, 712
Alissa White-Gluz, 588
Nik Nocturnal, 485
Lords of the Trident, 431
Bullet for My Valentine, 248
Darkest Hour, 240
Jamey Jasta, 226
Matt Pike, 117
Requiem Metal Podcast, 79
Alex Skolnick, 66
Cane Hill, 45
Into the Combine Podcast, 43
Some of these folks have been putting out seminal albums since the 90s, and some release cover songs with members of TOOL. So use that list as inspiration, and get out there and do great stuff.
It’s only the 11th of January and there’s so much great music coming out, like ‘A Fate Worse Than Home’ from Iravu (h/y Bryan from the As The Story Grows podcast).
I encourage you to use all of these ideas and look like a champ in your next marketing meeting, but if you do please upgrade to a paid subscription here on Substack!
I’m also down with cups of coffee via Ko-Fi, Venmo (@Seth-Werkheiser), Cash App ($ethwerkheiser), or PayPal.
Or just cut to the chase and support artists directly by buying me an album from my Bandcamp wishlist.