A decade feels like a lifetime in the fast-paced world of social media. To put it in perspective, 2010 was the year Instagram and Pinterest were launched, and Snapchat didn’t even exist. As 2020 starts, a strong social media presence is indispensable for businesses of all kinds, with venue owners and concert promoters being no exception. While the ever-changing tides of best practices can seem tricky to navigate, applying just a few of the top trends to your daily usage can make a huge difference in attracting, serving, and retaining concert-goers.
Below is just a small selection of top social media trends with suggestions for how promoters and venue owners specifically can use these tips to fill venues with the right audiences, night after night.
(Authentic) Influencer Marketing Continues to Grow and Demonstrate Value
While “influencer marketing” might drum up mental images of celebrities posing with a cup of detox tea and a scripted caption, influencer marketing done right can be effective and beneficial for businesses. Influencer marketing, in short, is a social media strategy using endorsements and brand/product mentions from individuals who have established themselves as authorities in their niche. The value of influencers is in their dedicated audience which is both interested in their activities and trusting of their opinions.
Influencer marketing can be used in a variety of ways by promoters and venue owners. They could be invited to shows, encouraged to post about what a great time they had at a certain venue and what aspects of the venue they enjoyed. Influencers can also help concert promoters by prioritizing certain artists in their photos or listing certain shows as possible “to-do’s” for their weekend. Just be mindful that some influencers have a rabid audience, so encouraging their own attendance might necessitate additional security measures.
A good place to start is to research influencers who are in your immediate area or involved in the live performance world in some way such as local artists or online celebrities. You do not need to drop a lot of money on having a celebrity shout-out your venue or concert — in fact, smaller, local influencers who are connected and involved in their communities often have more engaged followers, and therefore will have a greater pull when it comes to getting people to your shows. Learn more about influencer marketing here.
Social Media Dieting/Fasting – Use It To Your Advantage
Recent updates like smartphones tracking and reporting screen time or adding time limit features are all responses to a sentiment rippling through the population of phone users — people are worried that they’re spending too much time on their phones. Social media dieting (reducing time spent on one’s phone) and fasting (taking prolonged breaks from using phones) are both becoming more popular and it’s likely that this trend will only increase, particularly as some users may be making resolutions to spend less time on their phones.
This might sound like bad news for businesses using social media marketing, but there are clever ways to use this trend to your advantage and even increase audience trust in your business and brand. Try posting pictures of nature or of people socializing at your venue and ask how your audience will be unplugging over the weekend. This demonstrates that you are aware of your audience’s desire to be in the real world and away from their screens and that you care for their well-being.
You can also weave this message into your regular concert promotions. Messages like “Be In the Moment, See a Live Show,” encourage audiences to put down their phones and enjoy what’s on stage.
Tell Your Story With Stories
Instagram Stories aren’t new, but their popularity has only increased in the past year and it looks like it will continue to soar. Stories are photos, text, or short videos that stay on a user’s profile for 24 hours and then disappear. They usually show content that is more casual, behind-the-scenes, or unscripted. And they’ve worked wonders for engagement: in January 2019, Instagram reported having over 500 million active daily story users.
Stories offer you a chance to interact more personally with your audience. You can use them to speak directly to your audience about shows that are coming up, post short clips from shows in real-time so that audiences who are not attending can see what’s going on, show a bit of the backstage activity, and more. Since they are temporary, Stories are a great opportunity to have some fun and see what kinds of content your audience enjoys and engages with the most. An added bonus is that stories can help you overcome social media algorithms, as sometimes your stories are more likely to appear in a follower’s feed than your actual posts.
You don’t have to be on top of every twist and turn of social media marketing trends to run a successful account and see a rise in engaged audience members. By following just a few of the top trends, keeping an eye on what your followers do and don’t respond to, and listening to your instincts, you’ll be able to develop a social media presence that is vibrant, engaging, and impactful for your shows.