This week in our in-depth series about getting noticed as a DJ/producer, we’ll tie branding, content, and social media together, with tips on how to manage all the interactions with your fans that hopefully the good work we’ve done so far has started to generate for you.
Let’s recap that stuff: In part one, you funded your DJ/producer journey with many small income sources, while part two was all about creating solid content. Part three covered gaining recognition with a DJ/producer aesthetic, and parts four through seven dug deep into finding success on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, respectively.
Beyond helping create and push out content, managing our communities is the bulk of what I do for Digital DJ Tips (my position is aptly titled Social & Community Manager), so I’m perfectly placed to help you learn how to keep your fans happy online. Read on for our best tips in handling all the social media success headed your way…
Moderate like a pro
Moderation is tough because you want everyone to like you, but that’s not how life works. You can’t please every single person on the dancefloor all the time, so why would people in the online realm be any different? Occasionally, someone simply won’t like what you bring to the table, often for no good reason. With that said, you have a lot of control over how you’re perceived.
Be a part of the community
I can’t stress this enough: answer every single person. Imagine a fan walks up to you after a gig and says “hey I loved your set, it changed my life, you’re the best” and you walk away, ignoring them. It doesn’t look good in real life, so don’t do it online. Treat everyone who takes the time to comment on your killer content with respect and pretend they’re your friend; hopefully someday they will be, even if you never interact beyond the comment section.
Engaging in a conversation doesn’t have to be a long affair – the quick, small actions count just as much. Like their comment on Instagram and respond with an emoji. If someone asks you a question, answer it, and if someone retweets you, thank them! People don’t need to do these things for anyone, they’re doing it because they like you, or they think it’s cool, or it speaks to them emotionally, or they think their friends will like it, or… so encourage them to do more of that by sending them a GIF and a “prayer hands” emoji, and generally be grateful for their support.
You’ll earn the respect of your followers by showing you’re a real person. Think about your favourite celebrity. Now think how you’d feel if they responded to your comment on a Facebook post. It’s pretty nice, right? It might even make your whole day. Well, you’ll be giving your fans a similar experience by doing just that. If your audience feels heard, if they feel like a friend, they’ll support and defend you to the ends of the Earth. Harness the power of your community and its members: you can’t be a successful DJ/producer without them.
Be cool with hot button topics
While you generally want the feel of your page to be good-natured and enjoyable, a little controversy never hurts. Where there’s controversy, there’s activity. For example, we fully support the Pioneer DJ DDJ-SB3 “Jazzy Jeff Auto-Scratch” button, but a lot of people don’t and they make it known. It really is OK to have different opinions, and activity like this can signal to social platforms that your page is alive and well, since it stirs up so much conversation.
Sensitive topics ignite people to share their thoughts, so don’t shy away from every single topic that might cause your audience to speak up. As long as you’re respectful, feel free to express your thoughts or ask them their take on it. The comment section might be slightly “rougher” than usual, but don’t fear talking things out. Don’t let things get too heated though…
Be diplomatic and define your voice
There are a lot of personalities happening across the internet. Your job as moderator / social media manager is to be diplomatic. Essentially, be nice and give everyone the benefit of the doubt. Keep conversations on topic, make sure no one’s attacking each other, but otherwise step back and let the conversation run its natural course. You’re a big part of the community, but don’t think you completely run the place. Give it space to breathe.
If things get heated (see above), rephrase an opinion back to the thread with an emotionally neutral tone. This shifts the focus from emotion to content, and people can get on with what’s actually being said. Speaking of tone, you need to define yours early on. Is it funny, no-nonsense? Do you hate swearing? Just like defining your visual brand, pick an online voice and stick by it.
Now, trolls… what to do with them? We get at least one any time we publish anything related to the topic of analogue versus digital DJing, for instance. They’ll flock to your social pages eventually, without fail. “Don’t feed the trolls”, the experts say.
Put simply, here’s how we feel: if you can educate someone, go for it. If things are getting out of hand, step in and ask people to keep it friendly. Blatantly attacking other followers? Delete their comment. Repeatedly attacking others? Ban them. No one needs the negative, energy drain that comes with trolls. After a while, you’ll learn to spot them quick, then move on with your day.
Use the right tools
We’ve mentioned using third party social media programs in a previous article, but the questions remain: which one to use, and how exactly do they work? Let’s walk through Sprout Social, the app we use at Digital DJ Tips to manage our following.
Even the most disciplined person would have trouble posting to all social accounts several times a day. Diminish the worry by scheduling ahead. Plan a week or a month in advance, as long as you have good content posting multiple times a week, your audience will stay happy. With a program like Sprout Social, you can schedule Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram posts in advance.
Keep track of comments
You can absolutely check every social network, separately, multiple times per day and obsess over notifications, but I guarantee it won’t be nearly as efficient or effective as managing with a third party program. Sprout Social, for example, allows you to see all interactions in one long thread, and filter depending on social platform and type, as necessary. That’s retweets, Facebook messages and Instagram comments in one place.
Every interaction in one convenient place makes for smooth sailing. Ensure you’re clearing this down a few times per week, if possible, and that every person is acknowledged in some manner. Even if it seems small to you, it will mean a lot to them.
If you know how to engage your fans online, you’re miles ahead of many other DJ/producers. Employ these tactics and you’ll have fans for life.
In part nine, we’ll show how you can engage your following with an email newsletter for maximum success.
Here are the other parts in this series:
- Zero To Hero, Part 1: How To Hustle for DJ/Producer Success
- Zero To Hero, Part 2: How To Get Noticed Online As A DJ/Producer
- Zero To Hero, Part 3: How To Develop Your DJ/Producer Brand
- Zero To Hero, Part 4: How To Supercharge Your Facebook Page
- Zero To Hero, Part 5: How To Crush It On Instagram
- Zero To Hero, Part 6: Power Up Your DJ/Producer Twitter
- Zero To Hero, Part 7: Getting Started On YouTube
- Zero To Hero, Part 9: Why The Humble Newsletter Is A DJ’s Secret Weapon
- Zero To Hero, Part 10: How To Turn Your Mixtapes Into A DJ/Producer Podcast
- Zero To Hero, Part 11: Why Old School Networking Is A Killer Trick for Smart DJs
- Zero To Hero, Part 12: Collaborate With Other Savvy DJs
How do you engage with your online following? Any moderation tips you’d like to share? Tell us your thoughts below!