While studying classical guitar and entering the early professional stages of my career, I’ve found sharing my musical journey with others via social media to be very rewarding.
I’ve been fortunate enough to connect with young guitarists who follow my work nearly every day through messaging and email and to stay in touch with players from guitar festivals all around the United States. My focus on sharing has even helped me earn sponsorships from companies such as Soundbrenner and D’Addario, among others.
Colleagues and young guitarists often ask me for tips on how to build their following, so I was thrilled when tonebase offered me the opportunity to write this article and share what I’ve learned.
Though these tips are just scratching the surface, they are what I consider the most essential keys to building and retaining a social media following.
1. Understand what you have to contribute
Possibly the most important factor in building a social media following is understanding what you have to contribute to the community (p.s. you can probably hold off on uploading your entire album titled “selfies”…)
If you’re a student, consider sharing your process, what you’re practicing, and how it is helping you achieve your goals. Composers, try sharing your creative process and clips of your latest works. And if you’re a virtuoso or young professional, you could share your tips, music, and travel adventures.
The point is — give your target audience something meaningful, and high quality to follow!
2. Stay active in the community
Whatever platform you’re building an audience on, stay active in the community. Leave thoughtful comments on videos and pictures from both your peers and creators you admire.
Nowadays, people often look through the comments more than hashtags, likely in search of more information, or for a quick laugh. Either way, leaving thoughtful comments (far beyond the simple “nice job” or “👍”) will peak the interest of your potential audience.
3. Be consistent and authentic
Try not to make your audience feel like they’re on a spammy email list… and leave those shaky-cam videos of your performance from 1999 on your hard drive!
With social media allowing you to connect with others on a more personal level than ever, it’s important to be consistent and authentic (and as high quality as possible!)
Uploading what feels like a #tbt video too often may render your audience uninterested. Try to post content that is current and update often! If you do upload something old, explain its significance to you.
Lastly, don’t be tempted to buy follows or likes. It might sound appealing at first, but it provides no benefit in the long run and is likely to cause your account to be restricted or blacklisted.
Your goal should be to grow your number of quality followers. Your audience and follower count will be built over time with consistent, authentic posts and comments, both within your own page and throughout the community.