Bob Baker's Indie Music Promotion Blog

Music marketing ideas for DIY artists, managers, promoters and music biz pros


November 10, 2004

Buzz Gives Power to the People

More about buzz ... Here are some interesting observations from the book "Buzz: Harness the Power of Influence and Create Demand" by Salzman, Matathia and O'Reilly:

"Buzz marketing is effective because ... it enables consumers to experience a brand rather than simply use it ... Whereas the old system required advertisers to pick their audiences, part of the value of buzz is that the audience picks itself. Once buzz gets going, its flow is natural and free. It reaches those who are open to it and passes by those who are not."

I agree. And with this realization comes some good news and bad news.

The bad: There's only so much you can do to steer and manipulate word of mouth. You can encourage it, but it is ultimately up to your fans to get excited about you and share that excitement with their friends and networks.

The good: Effective indie music marketing is all about targeting. You shouldn't waste your time communicating your musical identity to people who are not predisposed to liking your style of music. Buzz takes care of that for you, since it only "sticks" with people most likely to become longterm fans.

More thoughts from Salzman, Matathia and O'Reilly: "In essence, buzz marketing gives power to the people. Every individual in a buzz chain has the freedom to accept or reject the message ... It is the commercial incarnation of natural selection. Only the fittest messages survive."

Do everything you can to make sure your musical message is fit and buzz-worthy! Download an excerpt from the Buzz book here.

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