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Posts Tagged ‘pop music’

The Grammy Awards: Lessons in Social Media Management

The 2012 Grammy Awards were the most-watched in history–but last night’s 2013 event may have been even bigger in terms of influence thanks to a communications team much more engaged in the art of, well, engagement. Seems like they finally got the message: social media buzz is now crucial to running a successful event.

So here are some lessons we learned from the Grammy’s social experiment:

1. Build the buzz: Many of the night’s biggest nominees didn’t tweet about the show beforehand because they didn’t need to: Mashable‘s infographic tells us that they just happened to be the biggest social media influencers as well, so their fans were already well aware of the event.

But of course the Grammy’s account aggressively promoted the ceremony well before it started, live-tweeting Saturday’s entire rehearsal event and making sure to share any relevant content from fans and nominees.

2. Make sure your audience knows how and where to find you: Repeat your handle and hashtags often, especially if you’re representing a big brand or event. This repetition may annoy some obsessive tweeters, but it will make the whole experience more user-friendly.

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Beyoncé Shows the World How to Respond to a Controversy

So Beyoncé held an unusual press conference today (her first since the lip syncing “controversy” broke). After asking all the media folk gathered in the audience to stand, she belted out an a capella rendering of the “Star Spangled Banner”, effectively telling her haters to shut the hell up before asking attendees if they might possibly have any questions (the final “bitch?” was all but implied). Here’s a crappy capture:

During the following question and answer session, Beyoncé explained that she didn’t have time to rehearse with the orchestra for the inauguration and did not feel comfortable “taking a risk” and singing without a pre-recorded vocal track (because it was “all about the President” anyway). So she sang live while the public heard the backing track, a practice that is “very common in the music industry.”

While she was technically lip syncing at the event, Beyoncé thought she’d take a moment to remind everyone in attendance today that she is perfectly capable of singing the National Anthem, thank you very much.

She just made a lot of people, ourselves included, look kinda dumb for making a big deal about this, didn’t she?

They Might Be Giants Release ‘Song a Day’ Promo App

They Might Be Giants iPhone AppToday in Interesting Music Promo news: They Might Be Giants (you know, the guys who wrote the Malcolm in the Middle theme) came up with an innovative way to promote their upcoming album Nanobots, set for release on their own Idlewild Recordings label in March.

What did they do? They created an app, of course. It’s free, and while it doesn’t allow users to actually download any songs, it does stream a different TMBG track every day–and new users can access the five most recent ones so they don’t have to go to the trouble of opening it every day. The mp3 list includes a mix of classic “hits” and songs from the upcoming album, allowing fans to preview new material while simultaneously remembering why they liked the band in the first place.

Of course, TMBG are no strangers to creative PR: Way back in the early 80′s they created the famous Dial-A-Song service, which rewarded callers who dialed their Brooklyn-based answering machine with a new, exclusive song every day! Whether you enjoy their music or not, you have to admit that this is an extremely cool way to get folks excited about new material.

Oh, and for the less enlightened portion of TMBG’s fan base…there’s an Android version coming too.

Justin Timberlake Hypes New Music in Most Pretentious Way Possible

We’re not sure what’s worse: this butt-level video of Justin Timberlake “heading into the studio” to lay down some hot new jams, the countdown clock that follows, or his ambiguous series of “I think I’M READY” tweets.  But hey, what do we know? We clicked on it, didn’t we?

OK, so there will be a new full-length, it will be produced by Timbaland, and both artists will collaborate with Beyoncé on her new solo record and a Destiny’s Child reunion project. It’s cool–we kinda miss the late 90′s too.

Amanda Palmer’s Social Media Win Turns into PR Fail

Ever heard of Amanda Palmer? The social media expert and former leader of the “punk cabaret” act Dresden Dolls invoked the wrath of the Internet after performing what we believe to be something of a brilliant act: turning a social media win into a full-scale PR fail.

In short: After her band went on hiatus, Palmer became a solo artist—but she had a bit of trouble raising money for an album/tour in “this economy” (sing it, sister). So she did what all social media mavens do these days and went on Kickstarter to raise funds. She went so far as to call crowdsourcing “the future of music”, and her generous fans backed her up: Her initial fundraising goal was $100,000, and she ended up netting $1.2 million.

Here’s where things got tricky.

After celebrating her digital victory and recording her album, she got ready to tour and noticed that her touring band lacked string and horn players, so she advertised for local musicians to help her out at each stop. In her own words, these local artisans could “join us for a couple of tunes” and “basically…BE the opening ACT!”

The only problem with this proposal was that she did not intend to pay said musicians—unless you count beer, “merch” and high fives as payment. While some understood this arrangement and had no problem with it, others saw a hustle in action.

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