How Labels Can Turn Followers into Fans

Much of the music world is in France right now for the annual Midem conference. Musically reports on a panel discussion about turning Twitter and Facebook followers into fans.

Engagement. It’s a word we’ll be hearing again and again at the Midem music industry conference this week. And while it’s a too-easily-spouted buzzword, there’s something important here too.As a musician, you can have x followers on Twitter or Likes on Facebook or even streams on Spotify, but what does that mean? Making those people fans in a way that involves properly connecting with them, rather than just trying to sell to them, is one of the most interesting challenges of the new music industry.It was also the focus for one of the first panel sessions at this year’s show: How Labels Reinvent Fan Engagement, organised with independent label bodies IMPALA and WIN.

That meant an indie-packed panel comprising Ronny Krieger of Monkeytown Records in Germany; Nuria Muntaner of Sones in Spain; Robin Van Beek of 8ball Music in the Netherlands, and Alain Verhave of Epitaph Records’ Dutch division. City Slang’s Christof Ellinghaus took on the moderation role.

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Meanwhile Will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas address conference goers via Skype.  His message was that the entire music industry is “delusional.”  Read his comments here.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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