Getting fans involved, and letting them feel part of something really is the future of marketing music. Fans don’t want to feel like they’re being told to do something, or having something shoved in their faces. They want to feel like they found a new band for themselves, and they want to feel like they’ve done something to help out the band.
I’ve only written about a few marketing campaigns already, but I hope you can see that the ones I’m talking about are the ones that are different, unique, and make the fans feel part of something, rather than just seeing a poster for the artists, or a music video, or hearing them on the radio. All of these are forms of advertising for the artist, and without them the campaign wouldn’t be as strong, but the campaigns that really stand out for me are the ones that have something different, and the ones that involve the fans, because fan involvement is free.
Fan involvement is the best type of marketing. You have thousands of ‘marketeers’ for your band, who will tell everyone they know about a new band that they like. They have no reason to promote the artist other than they like them. They’re not getting paid to like the band or promote the band. They’re doing it for free, because they love the music, and they want to see their favourite band do well. Fan involvement is definitely the future of music marketing, and the campaign that I’ll talk about next week is ‘The Johnny Cash Project’ which was one of the biggest fan-involved marketing campaigns, and one of the most successful.
Earlier this year, the Kaiser Chiefs and their record label B-Unique/Fiction Records, teamed up with ad agency Wieden + Kennedy, to bring a brand new, original marketing campaign that would get their fans involved.
It worked by letting fans buying the album for £7.50, and then choosing 10 of a possible 20 songs. After that, they could design the artwork, and then they could sell it on the bands website. For each copy that was sold, the fan would receive £1. The idea was that each album would be different, with different tracklisting, and different artwork, and each one would be unique and a one-off.
The website that it all happened on looked amazing, and was very user-friendly, encouraging fans to want to get involved, rather than feeling like it was a chore.
There were also banners ads and posters that you could feature on your own blog/website that let you advertise your particular album, a nice touch.
Now personally, I’m not a massive fan of the Kaiser Chiefs. They have too many ‘woooaaahs’ for my liking. But when it comes to marketing, they pulled it off here. The campaign was a relative success, getting to number 10 in the UK album chart, selling 12,000 copies in the 1st week, and 36,000 overall in the UK.
Next week: Johnny Cash