Hello boys and girls! I feel like having a little Friday rant…
We have moved from a time of musical scarcity into a time of musical abundance. Anyone with a few hundred green queens can now make tracks that sound great. The playing field has been levelled, and that is definitely a good thing. However, this means it is harder to stand out so people are resorting to mass marketing. This is where things get messy and frustrating.
As Soundcloud gets more and more popular I see the same things happening that happened with Myspace and Facebook. I get notified of many new people following me each day but when I look at their profile I realise that they havent even listened to a single track of mine and also have the maximum of 2000 followers (often with very few people following them back). Their hope is that by following people they’ll get more hits on their page. But thankfully Soundcloud is better designed than Myspace and Facebook, so you arent obliged to follow someone back, and you dont have to see any of the posts your followers make unless you want to.
I’m all for marketing, and pushing yourself out there, because if you don’t then you’re unlikely to get heard. My problem is with the lack of discrimination. I will get followed by someone that obviously has zero interested in my music. I also get dozens of messages from people asking me to check out their dubstep or pop electro track. I have nothing against these genres, but one look at my profile page would tell you I’m not your target audience! Yes, maybe by email-bombing 7000 people you will get 200 extra hits, but imagine if everyone did that, what a bloody mess!
Maybe a system like the brain will become the future for social networks. Neurons that fire together, wire together. Those that don’t are severed as they just contribute to redundancy and possible noise in the system. If people ‘follow’ or ‘friend’ you but don’t regularly access your profile and music then those connections could be cut. This would prevent the situation where everyone has a million friends and is bombarded with so much information that it becomes worthless. This could generate a much more efficient system.
But until then, take the time to check out other people’s music. Follow them and comment if you like it, and email them if you think they will like yours. If you havent shown the slightest bit of interest in them then why should they give you the time of day? Give and take. Don’t get caught up in the craze of spamming as many people as possible. Search out those that you like and might like you and build a relationship with them – five people that listen to you and are willing to play and recommend your music to others are worth more than five million that don’t really care.
Share the love freely, but not too freely, that leads to syphilis… 😉
Enjoy your weekends!