There is no greater sound than a room full of people singing your lyrics back to you. At that point, some might say that you've really "made it" as a band. What does it really mean? That you've cared for your fans enough to inspire them to care about you.
Like any relationship, there are a few things to keep in mind if you want to build a loyal fan base.
Be a fan of your fans
We all like to feel appreciated and admired. As an artist, you will likely receive that kind of affirmation from the stage. The difference between a band that performs well and a band that makes an impact is the investment made in between the stage and the floor. Your fans will know if you aren't happy to be with them. It's important to let them know that you're rooting for them with your music and with your engagement, on and off the stage.
Take time to build a two-way relationship
Your fans are people. They're sons and daughters, friends, husbands, wives, colleagues and peers. If you want to build a loyal fan base, it's important to treat your fans like the people they are. It's a relationship that requires the same investment, care and love that any other relationship deserves. Try your best to spend time out in the crowd or even at your merch table instead of hiding out in the green room. Fans notice when bands engage with the music community, and they're drawn to them. Ask questions and truly get to know your fans on a personal level. You don't have to spill your guts, but show them that you care and are interested in their life and what brought you together.
Give them a part to play in your bigger picture
Whether you send an open invite for extras in your music video or hold the mic out on stage for them to scream their favorite line, fans desperately want to be involved in the music that they love. Find creative ways to engage them in your songs, your social media presence, and your overall brand. Ask them what they think about your new album. Send a shoutout on social media for the ones who show up to every local show. Share your music off-stage with a candid video or an acoustic performance. Fans are more likely to show their support when they know that they've played a part in the finished product.
Like anyone, fans know when they are loved and wanted. They will support you and your music if you make intentional effort to show them how thankful you are that they're willing to listen, buy the album, or come out to a show. In short, the secret to a loyal fan base is human relationship, and how you build it is up to you.
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