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How to Find Your Band's Voice Online

A cat with it's mouth wide open

How people see you online is the most important thing for your band outside of your music. For many, your web presence will be their first impression of who you are, even before they get a chance to hear your music.

To target an audience that will be loyal fans and followers, you will need a web presence that captures the essence of who you are as a band from the type of content you post down to the very way you write and speak.

Here are a few questions every band needs to ask itself about developing your voice for consistency, clarity, and concordance with who you are as a band. This list will be especially helpful if multiple people manage your accounts, but also to ensure that everyone in the band is happy with how the band presents itself to the public.

How Do You Refer to Yourselves?

No, not what are you called, but how does the entity managing your social media relate to you?

Is it a member of your band using "I" and "we"? Is it the disembodied voice of your band as a collective using only "we"? Is it some other person such as a mascot or social media manager with their own backstory relaying messages from your band using "I" but calling your band "they"? Maybe it's something more creative I haven't thought of.

Establishing who is behind the screen will allow your fans to build those parasocial connections that are so essential to being a musical artist nowadays.

When fans relate to you as an entity, they can feel like they are part of your band's social circle and its success. This in turn pulls them to shows and draws them to your music.

How Do You Refer to Your Fans?

Curating a loyal fanbase is key to your long term success. Additionally, you want to be in control of how your fans relate to you to avoid alienating them in the future with misaligned expectations.

You need to establish how you will position yourself relative to your fans. That starts with what you call them. Are they simply "you"? (Or "y'all"?) Does your fanbase have a name? It might help to make a personality profile of your ideal fan, and work backwards to determine how they would like to be addressed.

You also need to decide on boundaries with your fans early. If you don't do this at the outset, fans may adopt a familiarity that might feel invasive. Choose what kinds of comments you do and don't respond to, which ones you give canned responses to, which lines of communication are open with your fans (e.g. are your DMs open?), and whether you want a fan club or street team to draw fans closer.

What Are Your Catchphrases?

Look, no one wants to be predictable, but when it comes to marketing your music, fans want to have their expectations met. Having a few turns of phrase that you use regularly allows fans to feel like they know you even if you keep your personal privacy tight.

Additionally, having phrases you use repeatedly enables people to make lighthearted jokes and memes at your expense. If you take these in stride and join in on the fun, you will not only build connections with your fanbase, but also signal to new listeners that there's fun to be had with your music.

What's Your Personality?

We've been circling around this one with the other questions, but you need to establish a solid persona that encapsulates your attitude as a musician. This one is challenging because the idea of a personality seems like something that can't be summarized in words.

This is because when we think of a personality, we think of all the things that make up our identity and the way we operate in the world. But when you're promoting your music online, you are performing; you are a character, a caricature.

Your personality should be crafted to be simple, consistent, and relatable to your particular fanbase. One way marketers like to build a personality for a brand voice is to refer to the list of Jungian archetypes. You can find several versions of this with a simple Google search.

What Are Your Values?

Last, you need to establish what your values are. Your values and the degree to which you press them will, more than anything else, determine the kinds of fans you will draw.

If you're in a band, it's even more important to have clear values established, so that the person managing your social media can represent the band without alienating any of the members.

Political compass quizzes can be helpful in coming up with issues to take a position on. However, it's easy to get lost in trying to address every issue your band might have to take a stand on. For that reason, you might want to iron out some overriding principles regarding how you decide your position on issues and whether you speak on them.

Contact Jester of No Court for Help with Your Web Content

Coming up with a coherent voice for your social media presence can be a challenge. If you aren't consistent with how you present yourself, listeners will perceive your web presence as contrived or confusing.

In addition to making music, I help musicians and small businesses with improving their written content. Hit me up if you're looking to tighten up your web presence or you need content written, and sign up for the mailing list below to keep up to date with my blog.


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