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Dave Cool
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Musician website & marketing platform Bandzoogle has just released a free eBook to help musicians through the process of putting together a website. If you’re building a new website or simply looking to improve your current one, “Building Your Website: A Step-By-Step Guide for Bands and Musicians” aims to help all musicians make an effective website for their music. The free eBook covers many topics, including: How to make navigation on your website easy The essential elements for your Homepage How to create a perfect Music section How you can do more with your Shows page Setting up your Online... Continue reading
Posted Jan 15, 2014 at hypebot
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It’s no secret that at Bandzoogle we believe that your website should be your main hub on the Internet. So if there’s any place online that fans should be able to buy your music and merch, it’s on your own website. Why sell direct to fans? By selling direct to your fans, you not only get most of the money (100% using the Bandzoogle Store Feature), you collect valuable data about those fans which can be used to help with tour routing, and most importantly, you also get their email addresses. That way, you can keep in touch with those... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2013 at hypebot
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When reviewing websites for Bandzoogle, I advise artists to think about the different kinds of people that will be visiting their site. These can be your current fans, and potential new fans, but also media/bloggers, bookers and other industry people. For that latter group, they’re likely looking for different information than your fans are, and you have to be sure to make it easy for them to find it. This can best be done by adding a Press Kit section to your website. Here are the 7 essential elements you should include in your digital press kit: 1. Bio First... Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2013 at hypebot
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It’s no secret that video is one of the most popular content formats online. So a great way to keep fans on your website is by embedding videos on your site. In fact, we here at Bandzoogle think videos are important enough to have their own page on the main menu of your website. However, many musician websites either don’t have a Videos page, or simply send people away to YouTube. Having a “Videos” section on your site with embedded videos allows you to curate which videos people see. With YouTube, there might be hundreds of live videos filmed by... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2013 at hypebot
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This post originally appeared on the Bandzoogle Blog. HFA provides rights management, licensing and royalty services for the music industry. With over 46,000 music publishing clients, HFA issues the largest number of licenses for the use of music in both physical and digital distribution formats. HFA also serves the D.I.Y. market with Songfile®, the company’s fast and easy online licensing tool. I interviewed HFA’s Director of Marketing & Communications, Dalita Keumurian, to find out more about Songfile and the process of recording and releasing cover songs. Q: So let’s start from the beginning. What does HFA do? HFA represents publishing... Continue reading
Posted Oct 8, 2013 at hypebot
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When it comes to having music on your website, installing a site-wide music player or embedding a player on your Homepage just isn’t enough. Remember, your website is your main hub on the Internet. If there’s any place that fans should be able to find all of your music, lyrics, and some free downloads, it’s on your own website. Create a dedicated Music page as part of the main menu on your site, then follow these 7 steps to give fans a great experience, plus collect emails and generate sales in the process: 1. Have a PLAY button It sounds... Continue reading
Posted Sep 5, 2013 at hypebot
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So far Bandzoogle's “The Tools of Music Fan Engagement” series has covered blogging, email newsletters, and Facebook. The next tool we’re going to cover is Twitter. Twitter is a social media platform that can no longer be ignored by emerging artists. Twitter’s active user base has grown 714 percent from July 2009 to January 2013, and now has over 500 million members. So chances are, your fans and potential fans are using Twitter, and it’s a great platform to engage with them for several reasons. Why Twitter is Great for Fan Engagement The common misconception about Twitter from non-users is... Continue reading
Posted Aug 22, 2013 at hypebot
I agree with your point, the point I was making was strictly about digital distribution and how all artists now have access to stores like iTunes/Amazon, etc. Where as 15 years ago, it just wasn't possible to reach a potential global customer base for a small fee. Now the challenge becomes driving people to buy your music, which is where the fan interaction comes into play. But yes, having a distributor that helps with marketing & promotion is obviously a different beast altogether, and no doubt can be helpful for those artists that have relationships to those distributors. Cheers, DC
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@Roach @Nelson: I totally understand your point of view, and I'm sure many artists would agree with you. I'm just not sure it's viable for emerging artists to ignore their fans. There are plenty of example of successful artists who you can't find online/don't interact with their fans, but more often than not they have teams behind them doing the heavy lifting (label, management, publicist, etc.). So for artists who don't have a team (or a history on a label), I'm not sure they can realistically forge a sustainable career without interacting with their fans and creating solid relationships to them, at least at the outset. Of course, I could be dead wrong and I'm just 1 guy, so there you have it. Thanks for reading and for commenting. Cheers, DC -- Dave Cool (Yes, that's my real name) Director of Artist Relations Bandzoogle.com Twitter: @dave_cool @Bandzoogle
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No respect I tell ya! For the record, Bandzoogle has been around since 2004 and continues to go strong :) -DC -- Dave Cool (Yes, that's my real name) Director of Artist Relations http://Bandzoogle.com Twitter: @dave_cool @Bandzoogle
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So far Bandzoogle's “The Tools of Music Fan Engagement” series has covered blogging and email newsletters. Now it’s time to talk about social media, starting with the biggest social media site out there: Facebook. We love to hate it, but the reality is that Facebook is still an essential tool for musicians to use in their arsenal when it comes to marketing music and engaging fans. Why Facebook is Great for Fan Engagement Simply put, Facebook is great for fan engagement because most of your fans are probably on Facebook. Artists often wonder if they have to use every social... Continue reading
Posted Jun 21, 2013 at hypebot
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In Part 1 of Bandzoogle's “Tools of Music Fan Engagement” blog series, I discussed blogging. Another important tool to use for fan engagement are email newsletters. Having an email newsletter might sound a little old school, but the reality is that it’s still proving to be the best way to keep in touch with your fans over the long term. So when it comes to fan engagement, having a newsletter should be high on your priority list of tools to use. Why Newsletters are Great for Fan Engagement Email newsletters are great for fan engagement because it’s a direct line... Continue reading
Posted May 14, 2013 at hypebot
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In a previous post I spoke about developing a strategy for fan engagement. One of the best tools that we encourage Bandzoogle members to use to engage with their fans is a blog. A blog is essentially a web log, an online journal where you can post entries and where your fans can leave comments. Blog posts can be used to announce news (album, tour, etc.), document experiences (recording, touring, etc.), or offer anecdotes from your personal life (passions outside of music, funny pets, etc.). Posts can be mostly text, mostly photos, or even video. Here's why blogging is great... Continue reading
Posted Apr 10, 2013 at hypebot
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Flash was once a hugely popular platform used to create streaming audio and video players, animations, and other multimedia content for websites. Now, its popularity is waning, as it struggles for relevance in a more mobile world. When reviewing websites for Bandzoogle at music conferences, I still see many artists using Flash widgets for important content on their sites, like music players, videos, and even for things like show calendars, bios, and press kits. If you’re an artist and use Flash on your website, here are 4 reasons why you should stop immediately: 1. Not good for SEO SEO =... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2013 at hypebot
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At Bandzoogle, one of the most important decisions we try and help our members make is what main menu options to have on their websites. Whether you’re building the new website for your band, or just doing a bit of cleaning up, the navigation has a significant impact on the experience your fans will have on your site. In this blog post we’ll go over which main menu options are essential for your website, how many menu options to have, how you should name them, and how to decide which sections are essential for you to have a complete website.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 28, 2013 at hypebot
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When doing website reviews at Bandzoogle, a common issue we come across are bands trying to put too much content and too many features on their websites. Because there are so many tools, features, and widgets available to musicians, some feel like they should use all of them. But when it comes to your website, simple really can be better. Long gone are the days of Geocities, blinking text, dancing babies and glitter (see http://wonder-tonic.com/geocitiesizer if you don’t remember). The new trends are for slick, simple, and minimalist designs that let an artist’s best content shine. You should aim to... Continue reading
Posted Feb 6, 2013 at hypebot
Hi Jack, That assumes that artists must retain an air of mystery, and I'm not sure that's the case. If it makes sense for an artist's brand to remain mysterious, then that approach might work, but it would be hard to pull off without a management team/agent/publicists working to do some of the heavy lifting on promotion. Artists like Sufjan Stevens and God Speed You Black Emperor have very little presence online, and retain that air of mystery for sure. But again, they have teams to help with promotion and getting the word out about shows, new music, etc. On the flip side, you have artists like Amanda Palmer who share pretty much everything, and practically live on Twitter interacting with their fans. Other artists like Matthew Ebel , Zoe Keating are very active on Twitter as well, and are very open with their fans. I guess it comes down to what approach makes sense for the artist's brand, and what their needs are in terms of promotion; whether the artist has a team in place or budget to hire people, etc. I once interviewed Nancy Baym, Associate Professor of Communication Studies at the University of Kansas, and online fandom expert about this very issue. She talks about the concept of "Fans or Friends" and the challenge of artists retaining some mystery in the age of social media: "Fans or Friends? How Social Media is Changing the Artist-Fan Relationship" => http://bit.ly/UJFhPl Cheers, Dave -- Dave Cool (Yes, that's my real name) Director of Artist Relations Bandzoogle.com Twitter: @dave_cool @Bandzoogle
Toggle Commented Feb 1, 2013 on The 3 Pillars Of Music Fan Engagement at hypebot
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Hi Debra, Thanks for your comments, and I totally agree. If an artist reaches a point where they’re getting 100’s of questions/responses everyday, then delegating to other band members, interns, etc., becomes key. I think as long as the artist is spending some time every day (maybe 30-60mins) personally engaging with fans, it will show, and no doubt be appreciated by those that they correspond with. Cheers, DC
Toggle Commented Jan 31, 2013 on The 3 Pillars Of Music Fan Engagement at hypebot
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In a previous post I talked about why it’s important that musicians interact with their fans. But how often should this be done? And for how long? Can managers, labels, or interns handle fan engagement for you? Here are 3 important things to keep in mind when developing a strategy for fan engagement. 1. Authenticity First and foremost, communication with your fans must come from you, the artist, in your voice. Not your manager, label, or intern. People aren’t interested in hearing generic updates from your label or agent. They want to get to know your personality, hear about your... Continue reading
Posted Jan 31, 2013 at hypebot
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This is the 5th of 5 website reviews as part of the Hypebot & Bandzoogle Video Website Review Contest. For this last review, we look at the website for Anacron, a rapper based in Los Angeles: www.anacronmusic.com The review looks at the Design, Organization & Navigation, and Content of Anacron's website. Although his site has some nice branding elements, the navigation and content need improvement to make the website a better and more engaging experience for fans. We hope that Anacron, and everyone who watches, finds the video review helpful: Hypebot contributing writer Dave Cool is the Director of Artist... Continue reading
Posted Jan 11, 2013 at hypebot
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At Bandzoogle, we often talk about the “Hub & Spokes” method to drive traffic to your website using your social media profiles. The root of the “Hub & Spokes” concept is really about interacting with your fans and using all the tools available in a cohesive strategy that will create more awareness about you and your music. Now, musicians are busy people. Often they play in several projects, or have day jobs, families, or all of the above. So whenever there is talk about social media, newsletters, and marketing in general, it’s understandable that it can seem a little overwhelming.... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2012 at hypebot
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By Melanie Kealey from music website and marketing platform Bandzoogle. Twitter: @Bandzoogle If reality television, blogging, and social networking has taught us anything, it’s that fans want to know more about the real you. An About page can be a huge source of traffic for your website. Think about the people who are visiting your website. Maybe your band opened for another band and their fans want to see what you're about. Maybe a journalist or blogger needs material in order to review your show, or your new album. They're interested in finding out more - it's up to you... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2012 at hypebot
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By Allison Sharpe from music website and marketing platform Bandzoogle. Twitter: @Bandzoogle Making a living in music has always been a challenge, but with digital music being so readily available it's important for you as a musician, artist, or band to branch out with your music. It's not enough to just press up some CD's and throw some tracks on your website and expect to make a decent living. Working as a musician means just that, working! It means getting up every day and hustling to find new ways to make money with your music. Several books have been written... Continue reading
Posted Nov 30, 2012 at hypebot
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Bandzoogle recently attended the TAXI Road Rally, an annual conference exclusively for TAXI members (and free with membership). I was invited to speak on a panel called “Are You Leaving Money on the Table?” along with Tony vanVeen (CEO of AVL, parent company of Disc Makers/CD Baby), Lauren Danzy (Marketing Manager, SoundExchange) and Gooding (Indie Artist/Songwriter). Moderated by the Founder of TAXI, Michael Laskow, the panel took place in the Grand Ballroom of the hotel in front of over 500 musicians. And although it was only an hour long, a lot of helpful information was shared. Here are some of... Continue reading
Posted Nov 27, 2012 at hypebot
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This is the 4th of 5 website reviews as part of the Hypebot & Bandzoogle Video Website Review Contest. This time, we review the website for Mushy Callahan, a 4-piece/4-brother rock band from Toronto, Canada. Below is the video review of their website: www.mushycallahan.com Mushy Callahan’s website has a flashy design and is well-organized, but we go over some of the ways they can improve the design by moving away from the flash elements, adding more personal content, and adding a few key elements that will make the site work better for the band. We hope that Mushy Callahan, and... Continue reading
Posted Oct 4, 2012 at hypebot