4 Things Successful Independent Artists Online Do That Others Don’t
What are successful independent artists? Now we could go back and forth on this all day because the definition is subjective. I’m sure however on a basic level we can all (mostly) agree, a successful artist is – or is further than an artist, that makes a living, creating, promoting and selling their craft.
How hard is that to do? It would seem almost impossible. You’ve been creating for years and whilst you may have made some money, you are still working your job and still unable to put the time you’d really like into your craft.
There are some artists however, that seem to be growing constantly. These artists are coming on strength to strength and you may feel like you’re more talented and have more to offer but the industry is just opening up to them and not you. Why is that?
Now I can’t say if you’re more talented or have more to offer. I can’t say you don’t work as hard as them or as often. I would like to say that you are most likely working at the wrong things, in the wrong places and that is possibly why things aren’t going to smoothly.
So in this article, i’m going to break down 5 Things Successful Independent Artists Online Do That Others Don’t
Independent Artists And Interpersonal Connections
It’s the old adage that it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. I myself prefer, it’s not who you know, it’s who knows you but either way, it’s about connections.
Some people figure out early that connections must be deeper than surface level. Many artists online are not in the mind state of patience. Rather than getting to know someone, earning their respect and trust over time, many run right in asking for things and expecting respect and consideration.
- Ask the influential producer how often they get asked by artists they’ve never spoken to before for beats.
- Ask the independent videographer how often they get asked to do a video ‘for the low’.
What many artists fail to realise is that they are blinded by their passion.
Their passion is driving them to run around, rub people up the wrong way, rush themselves and the people around them and generally come across as very – very unlikeable.
You have time!
Understand that you do have time and the very least you can give someone you want something from, is respect and a little bit of your patience. Trust me, taking your time to really get to know everybody you would like to build with, will do you huge favours in the long run.
If you really want to step it up, pay it forward. Ok, you want something from someone but that doesn’t make it a one way street. How about going out of your way to help them with something. It could be as simple as sharing their stuff or interacting with their posts genuinely. You could even refer some customers/clients their way and telling the potential customer to let them know you sent them over.
Whatever way you do it, you need trust and reliability for proper working relationships, slow things down and do it right.
Independent Artists Study Data
Analytics, they’re pretty hard to understand, at least in a practical way if you don’t know what you’re looking at. It’s understandable. Successful independent artists are making the most of their analytics.
See analytics aren’t something you just look at out of interest. Analytics are there to be studied! How old are your fans? Where in the world do they come from? What other interests do they have? This is the kind of information companies pay big money for because the more you know about your customer, the easier it is to sell to them.
You may not be trying to sell something just yet but you are trying to build as big a fanbase as possible right? Well if you are studying your analytics you are going to find out who exactly your audience is. You can then begin to cater your content to them specifically.
Don’t waste your time trying to target people that may or may not like what you do. Focus your efforts on the majority. If your analytics say that 72% of your audience are 25-35, maybe it’s smart to use 90’s references and target fans of other artists in that bracket.
How Are They Finding You?
Not only that but it’s fundamental that you find out how these people are finding you and what they are landing on first. It could be a particular music video or a particular page on your website. You have to analyse these referrals and figure out how to make the rest of your videos/content as easy to find as well as putting all your important stuff where they are most likely to see it.
Regardless, it’s essential that you become a pro at analytics. That means pro at understanding them but also at making practical changes based on them.
Independent Artists & Quality Control
Do you ever click on an artists music to find out they’ve recorded a song with their phone? The instrumental and the voice are on the same track, the beat still has a tag in it…
One thing that separates Successful Independent Artists and unsuccessful ones is quality. Quality is something that indicates how serious someone is, in any craft.
When you start out and you’re practicing, we understand, it’s expensive to record music that never going to get pushed really.
However, if you’re 5-10 years into this and your quality is still amateur, it’s just not acceptable. Quality stands out and not only shows you’re serious about your craft but it gives an indication that it’s worth our time. For example, if your thumbnail looks clean and your music video is properly titled, it’s going to be a lot more likely we click on it.
What we won’t click on is ‘I Go Hard Bruh Mix1’ with a blurred thumbnail from your ‘music video’ you recorded that’s just you miming in the car acting hard and smoking a blunt. There’s just levels and stuff like that is on a lower one.
Invest in quality that makes you proud. We will take you a lot more seriously.
The Art Of Reinvention
The art of reinventing yourself. If we look at the big stars that are still around today, they stayed relevant through reinvention. Drug dealer Jay-Z, Playboy Jay-Z, Business Jay-Z, Black & Proud Jay-Z, Role Model Jay-Z. Trailer trash Em, Psychopath Em, Recreational Drug Em, Political Em, Silly Em, Rehab Em, Depressed Em.
As their lives grew through music, so did they. Rather than become stale and stick to their original formula they used stages in their life to influence their music and brand going forward.
This article however, is for artists like you, so how can you reinvent yourself? The best reinvention is just being completely aware of how you change as a person as you move along your path in life. Your music and brand need to reflect this and you cant stay the same person on or off track.
Not only that but how is the soundscape evolving? If people are feeling the 808s, i’m not saying abandon the music that made you but figure out how to make your music more current. You can’t freestyle on DJ Premier and alchemist beats forever.
If everything is beginning to look and feel the same, it may be time to reinvent yourself.
Maybe these are things you are doing, maybe not. Regardless they are worth thinking about deeply. Changes need to come from this, don’t take this information idly. Artist are using information like this to change their lives. So change yours!
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