Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past decade then you’ll have undoubtedly heard of the 1000 True Fans business model as first written about by Kevin Kelly on his blog The Technium. The premise is that dedicated fans will buy everything that you release and therefore you only need 1000 dedicated fans to operate a sustainable music career.
It’s a formula that’s been tried and tested many times in the decade since, in all online businesses not just music. There are some great success stories too. But where do you start when it comes to finding your own 1000 True Fans?
One thing that many Independent artists are still not doing is thinking internationally. These days it’s easy to reach fans across the globe – the majors no longer have the monopoly on this with their huge marketing budgets and massive release campaigns.
Google Keyword Tool
If you don’t have a Google Adwords account then it’s easy to set one up for free. First create your account then in your admin area look to the top right of the screen and you’ll see a spanner icon. Click this to open a dropdown menu and select ‘Keyword Planner’ top left. Type in a search term that people may use to look for your style of music, then hit the Get Started button. Here’s where the fun begins – you’ll be able to see which terms people are actually searching for. Try a few ideas and save the best keywords. The higher the search volume and the lower the competition, the better for you. Now you can really start to drill down and find out where your audience are. Try searching the same keywords across different countries by selecting different locations in the top menu. You’ll soon start to get an idea of where to run your next marketing campaigns.
Once you have a good list of keywords, you can use some of them across your website pages to improve your chances of being found in Google searches (called onsite SEO). You could also choose to run an Adwords campaign to put your music in front of the correct audience. This is a whole topic on it’s own that will be covered in another post.
Digital Sales Reports
Another great place to look is your own sales reports. You may browse each month out of curiosity and then close the documents but your digital download reports can really help you to find out where your fans are to help structure your next release campaign.
See which countries and stores in particular are popping up frequently and add these to your marketing plan. You could look at targeting these countries in your Adwords campaign.
Download Store Insights
It’s a sightly older document now but this report from Spotify gives a fascinating insight into which genres are favoured by which countries. If you’re interacting online with your fan base then global borders become unimportant so use data like this as part of your campaign to further narrow down which countries your fans could be residing in.
There’s a lot more you can do that we’ll cover in future articles but this is a great way to start identifying where fans of your style of music reside.