Absolutely. Here is why.
Before social media, bands were often noticed at live shows by industry professionals. It became clear that the more you perform, the higher your chances were of being noticed and ideally signed.
ENTER SOCIAL MEDIA. 🤯
It is no longer necessary for booking agents to attend a show to find acts to put on their lineup. Why put in the effort when you can just log onto Facebook or Instagram and watch a band’s latest video content? Your online presence can be likened to your digital resume for booking agents on the lookout.
Making sure you have a presence across several platforms is also important and it tells the onlooker a lot about your audiences. For example, if you only have a presence on Facebook and nowhere else, the booking agent might assume that you are of an older demographic and that your target audience is too. This alone might be enough of a deterrent. The booking agent may dismiss you, knowing that the patrons who attend their venue are a younger demographic. Having regular and up-to-date content on your pages that reflects the current status and sound of your band is crucial as well. This gives venues and booking agents a clear and accurate picture of what your band sounds and looks like from the outtake.
In addition, when you have a presence across multiple platforms, other bands, brands, festivals, venues and industry professionals you support or collaborate with can tag you. This puts you in front of their online audience, increasing your chances of more follows. With little or no online presence, you are robbing yourself of the opportunity to widen your online audiences. These are the people who if nurtured correctly, will eventually physically attend a show.
Furthermore, by having an online presence and staying active, you allow viewers to follow your journey and keep tabs on you. Maybe they couldn’t make it to your next show but were hoping to make it to the one after. How will they know when that is if there is no up to date information online to alert them? This could be as simple as adding a Linktree in your Instagram bio for those who want to navigate elsewhere to find more information about you. Or even scheduling a post about your future show dates.
If someone is lucky enough to stumble across your show by chance, it should be near effortless to find your page if they resonate with your sound. Telling patrons at your live shows how to find you online is a great way to deliver physical fans to your online doorstep. At the beginning and end of a set, consider telling people your band name, which platforms people can find you on as well as your handles.
This is where consistency is key. Be consistent with your online presence. Use the same handles and profile pictures across multiple platforms. You want to make it as easy as possible for people to find you and recognise you on their preferred platform. If all your handles are different, the extra effort might be enough for them to give up mid-search. That’s one fan that you certainly had, now lost in the ether. Similarly, if someone noteworthy like a manager, agent, or label rep is at your show and has akin difficulty in locating you online, that may be an opportunity lost.
These are such simple things but make a world of difference.
It is clear when bands or music businesses have put time and thought into their online presence. When you first enter a website, you get an initial sense of what the music might be like based on the colour scheme, the font, how bright the images are, whether band members are smiling, whether it is straightforward to navigate through the site etc. Even though these are small things that you probably don’t even realise you’re noticing, your subconscious is picking up on these aesthetic cues to bring you to an overall assumption about what you might hear and experience before you have even listened.
Your website and online presence speaks for you, so make sure it is representative of the real you. A website and your social platforms should all align with the “you” that you are trying to exude. If there is consistency and the branding and aesthetic are clear, it shows viewers that you put effort, thought and dedication into this. You know who you are, which makes you easier to identify with as an audience member.
An online platform like a website is the perfect place for you to brag and offer social proof. Social proof works by tapping into the basic human instinct to follow the actions of others, building trust and credibility, and lowering barriers to making purchases online. Testimony from fans and other bands helps bolster your credibility. You can also list any achievements, awards and other notable bands you have supported. All of this serves to convince the viewer and gain you a new fan or opportunity.
With the level of technology nowadays, it is so much easier to create incredible music that sounds nothing like a live show. It is now normalised to play live with backing tracks and just one other musician. This cuts costs and makes it more manageable when touring and travelling. However, if you are especially convincing online, but underwhelming in a live setting, you will lose traction and followers fast.
Live performance is just as important as an online presence. The live show is your product, and you can have the best website in the world, but with an average product, it won’t matter. Don’t forget to hone your craft and make your live show special. The more eclectic your live show is, the better the content will be for your online identity. Think ahead about how you can capture these moments so they can be relived online for others to see. Your online presence is the support your live show needs to be successful and longevous.
Want to know the steps to creating an exemplary online presence? Read our latest blog >> How to build an exemplary online presence