by Cheryl B. Engelhardt
Make promotion for your music video a game and ask your fans to share
How can you boost views and downloads and likes without bugging the heck out of your fans or spending a gazillion dollars on ads?
After months of trial and error, I found one promotional strategy that actually produces results.
Create a game
I donâ€™t mean re-invent Chutes and Ladders. I mean make a game of a short term goal that you can measure, like getting up to 1,000 YouTube views on your new music video in 24 hours, or to get 1,000 Facebook likes by the end of the week, or trying to get 20 shares on your iTunes singleâ€™s link. I create a game once a month or so and present it to my fans. I always see positive results, even if the game isnâ€™t â€œwon,â€ i.e., our exact numbers werenâ€™t reached.
Make a powerful, direct, specific request
Make a request in such a way that people will take an action. For example, â€œmy new video is up on YouTube!â€ is not a request. â€œCheck it outâ€ is a request, but itâ€™s not powerful, specific, or direct. â€œIâ€™m playing a game to get 1,000 views on this music video before the end of the day tomorrow. Will you please share this link today?â€ is powerful, direct, and specific.
Itâ€™s powerful because itâ€™s straightforward and honest. Plus, people like to play games and you have invited them to be a part of yours. Itâ€™s direct because you are asking them directly to share the link, not just posting a link hoping theyâ€™ll share it. Itâ€™s specific because there is an action they have to take by a certain time (sharing your link, today, or choosing not to). They will think in their heads â€œno,â€ or they will share it. Either way, making a powerful, direct, specific request causes people to take a second to think about what you are asking.
Acknowledge every share
Once youâ€™ve made your request, people will share your link, I promise. Stay on top of the shares, and make sure to acknowledge every share, whether â€œlikingâ€ the share, or commenting on their page, thanking them. Keep track of and respond to all comments. By creating this game, you have also created a community. Anyone who shares is now part of it and wants to win. It has gone from being about you winning to them winning, too.
Keep the players updated
Throughout the designated time youâ€™ve established for your â€œgame,â€ post updates on how far you have to go, how far youâ€™ve come, etc. Keeping tabs on the progress will also allow you to post mentions of the game without feeling like you are bugging people to share. Youâ€™ve made the request and now are following up on the results and keeping your fans informed.
Itâ€™s not about winning the game, by the way. Itâ€™s about generating more views and a connection between you and your fans. If you hit your marker, cool. If not, youâ€™ve tightened the bond between your fans and your content and presented yourself in a powerful light.