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    How to Build a Fanbase from Scratch in 2024

    A band or musician's fanbase is crucial to their popularity, image, and overall success. These fans will stream your albums, share your posts, and buy your merchandise, and they are likely a key reason you pursued a career in music in the first place.

    Your fanbase is a significant source of motivation to continue creating music and performing, and it also serves as a strong indicator of your career status, such as stream counts and social media followers. Building a dedicated fanbase that supports you and follows you on tour is the ultimate goal for many artists, but first, you need to lay the groundwork to develop your loyal followers.




    Strategies for Growing Your Fanbase as a Musician

    Begin with a modest approach. Cultivating a dedicated fanbase that passionately sings along at your shows takes time and persistence. Be patient and invest effort into nurturing your audience, as the results will be rewarding in the long run.

     

     

    1. Define your target audience

    Determining your target audience is a crucial first step in growing your fanbase from the ground up. While your music style plays a significant role, it's also essential to think about who you aim to attract and resonate with. Not everyone shares the same musical preferences or consumption habits, so consider whether you want to connect with an older audience on Reddit or engage a more TikTok-savvy Gen-Z crowd.
     



    Consider the type of venues you'll be performing at, the typical attendees of these shows, and which artists have previously played there. Once you've pinpointed your target audience, you can plan your strategy more effectively and use your time efficiently to reach this group.

     

     

    2. Define your musical style

    Once you've identified your target audience, you can focus entirely on honing and showcasing your unique artist style. Although this existed before pinpointing your audience, now you can channel all your energy into creating a captivating stage and social media presence.

    In recent years, there has been a significant shift from the previously 'too cool for school' musicians to more authentic styles commonly seen on TikTok and other social platforms, showcasing a more human and relatable side of even the world's biggest stars.

    The rise of TikTok, Reels, and Shorts video content has enabled artists to present a more fun and relaxed persona to their fans, fostering stronger connections by offering a behind-the-scenes glimpse into their daily lives.

    Ultimately, staying true to yourself and appearing genuine and passionate to your fans is the best way to build a loyal and supportive fanbase. This authenticity will also be beneficial when seeking music sponsorship deals, helping you stand out to potential brand partners.

     

     

    3. Online presence on social media

    It's no secret that social media is crucial for building your fanbase. It's often the first place people go to learn about you as an artist and find out about your upcoming gigs and festivals.

    You'll need to provide valuable and relevant content on your social profiles, posting regularly while maintaining your unique brand image.

    This is your chance to engage with your audience and showcase your personality. Using strategies like polls, "Ask Me Anything" stories, and exclusive competitions can significantly boost your fan engagement and grow your fanbase.

    A strong social media presence also improves your chances of being noticed by industry professionals, such as record label A&Rs and event promoters. Your accounts should be current and polished, ready for bookers to browse. Festival organizers often look at follower counts and streaming numbers to decide whether to book an artist.

    Tip: A&R professionals frequently check social media and streaming metrics to gauge if an act is ready for their label, so maintaining a robust online presence can significantly boost your chances of success.

    Think of social media as your free promotional tool. It's designed to help you showcase your content, so be proactive—promote your art vigorously!

    Engaging with fans and posting regularly is crucial, so ensure you're marketing yourself effectively across all your social media platforms. The more visibility you gain, the more fans you'll likely attract.

     

     

    4. Create Amazing Music

    You might have top-notch Instagram and Twitter accounts, but without great music, it won't matter much. Perfecting your skills in the studio and delivering well-rehearsed, tight live performances will have the most significant impact on growing your fanbase.

    It's crucial to remember that everyone starts somewhere. Every show, no matter how small, and every new fan brings you closer to landing a major festival spot. Don’t dismiss local fairs and smaller festivals—they're great opportunities to showcase your talent and attract new fans.



    While it may not be the Pyramid Stage, a local village festival can be an ideal platform to display your skills and gain new followers. Actively apply to festivals that offer excellent exposure to help build your fanbase.

    Building a strong fanbase takes time, so be patient and believe in your music and content. Keep working at it and fostering fan engagement!

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