Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Week Seventeen: The Final Post

Well, this has certainly been a ride. I actually thought the previous post was the last post and somewhat treated it with that level of finality. I am trying to remember what my previous level of social media use was prior to the class and looking back I would say that my usage has changed but only slightly. I am still lacking in posting regularly and really doing things to "engage my audience", but I am definitely more aware of when to post as well as what to post.

I never really used my personal accounts for much more than their messaging capabilities and that still really holds true. I do however step in and manage the band's account and website where I am a lot more business-oriented than before. Now I find myself looking at FB Insights more than the page itself, I am looking at previously sponsored ads, post reach and demographics on a regular basis. I also recently gave our website a complete update and spend a lot of time looking at the analytics from that.

There has been a definite impact of utilizing the techniques learned in this class. I have perhaps experienced this more so than most students because I have been sponsoring targeted ads through my bands FB / IG and we have certainly seen a boost in post reach, record sales, and overall likes. In the coming weeks, I will be sponsoring yet another ad with focus in Europe. I will definitely continue to use methods in the textbook and this class moving forward in the future.

I'm not entirely sure that I will keep up with Cosmic Void on social media, and I am almost certain that I will be definitely deleting the Twitter account. I will probably keep the FB and IG accounts though I will be taking the next few months off. After that, I think I will begin promoting CV using social media and the methods learned. Right now though the band is getting all of the attention.

I certainly need to increase my interaction and frequency of posts and keep an eye on the insights but thanks to this class I am not confident that I can grow any social media page. Thank you for that!

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Week Sixteen: Post 2 Comments

This being the last post of this kind I decided to go and comment on everyone in my group's pages.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Week Sixteen: Post 1 Planning Your Future

I have found this to be an enjoyable class, and of all the writing-intensive classes that I have this semester, this is the one that I found the be the most likeable. I particularly liked learning more about social media use and its marketing applications, being a marketing major and a Star Wars fan I could simply quote that "This is the way". Marketing and social media will forever forward be intertwined.
Another aspect of this class that I enjoyed is the textbook itself. Most of my textbooks get sold, some of them go in the fireplace but this is one that I intend on keeping.

In regards to the types of social media use that I enjoy the most, I will easily be sticking to Facebook and Instagram, which is something I somewhat knew prior to coming into this class. I really like the way Facebook lets you target your audience when sponsoring posts and I have seen some real-life results in doing so. I also have gotten to see firsthand the difference in results by changing your audience (targeted, page plus friends and etc). Twitter is something that I never really have liked and I feel that for the kind of business I plan to create there really just isn't much use for it.

Moving forward I definitely plan to continue to use sponsored ads on FB and IG as well as attach google analytics to my website. I also had an idea come to mind last night, which is instead of blogging about happenings within the studio I should write about them and print them out in a free mini "zine" and put them out at concerts that I go to. That could be a good way to drum up some interest for Cosmic Void. Still, the number one way to get people interested in recording here is going to be word of mouth and talking to them directly. Last night I was doing a good amount of this at a festival we played.

Considering some of my upcoming obligations I really do not intend to spend a whole lot of time with Cosmic Void and pushing recording projects until the end of winter. I will say that the majority of the marketing done for Cosmic Void as well as my own band are through the means of social media. It would probably be a good idea to dedicate an hour or two a week focusing on the marketing of the band, the album and Cosmic Void. We really can not allow things to become stagnant for any of these three entities.

To be completely honest upon finishing this class and this semester I will be graduating with two AAs and a COA, I've also spent a huge amount of time recording and touring. I would be lying if I didn't say the next two months are going to be complete downtime and watching the new Star Wars movie a bunch of times. In the past two weeks alone I have typed 26 pages, edited down 100 mins of shot footage and played 3 concerts, I am exhausted. Now that being said though I do certainly plan to keep up on my social media usage, mostly for the band and the record itself. Right now is a crucial time when the record is gaining traction and I have to continue to push that forward. Within the next month I will be sponsoring two different posts focusing on the record, one nationwide and then one focusing particularly in Germany/Poland where we are amassing a large following. We are signed to a label located in Poland and this is really bringing in some interest but its also our responsibility to add to that as much as possible. Another plan is to post some footage from these past few concerts once edited and focus on those weekly 4pm and later posts that tend to grab the most audience for us. We could also do a post about that whole Spotify year in review things about the number of people who listened to us but I'm not sure, were not necessarily ones to jump on trends like that. Whatever the future holds for myself, my band and Cosmic Void its certainly going to be busy and exciting.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Week Fifteen: Post 1 Google Analytics

Google Analytics has a slew of useful tools that could be helpful to both my recording studio as well as my band. This is something I find especially useful at this time as we have a domain website that is not doing as well as we would hope. One issue right off the bat is that WordPress charges a much higher fee in order to have a site that allows you to edit your SEO. I find this practice ridiculous and consider the notion criminal but unfortunately, I was not the one to purchase the website and I am stuck dealing with it.

One of the most useful Google Analytics tools is the audience reports. It is imperative to know about the activity on your website as well as know the characteristics of those hits. Where are they coming from, are they following links, are these organic searches, are they paid searches. This is the kind of information you will find within Google Analytics audience reports. You can also learn valuable demographic information about your visitors using audience reports. Another tool that I find particularly useful is the Behaviour Report. This will allow you to know more of what people are doing inside of your site, how long they are staying, where inside of the site they travel and what else they might be interested in.

Of all of the Google Analytics, these are what I consider to be the key features and feel they are essential to really understand the value of your website as well as the most crucial tools to helping it grow.

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Week Fifteen: Post 2 Facebook Insights

First off with this assignment I decided to look at the insights for my band page because at almost 1000 followers there will be more healthy, organic and interesting insights from the page. Also I chose to do this because nobody else in the band is really paying any attention to these numbers or what they mean. This should be a good exercise because it will help me learn more about our following and I can then tell the others what I have found out.

Right now the page has 924 followers and is about 2 years old. Our monthly page views are 329 which is up 27%, we have added 179 new followers in the past month which is up 142% and our post reach is 6,631 which is up 179%. I can already say that part of this is due to the record's release and particularly us being on a European label that is bringing a lot of traffic in from Europe. All of these new followers are organic and the majority of them are coming over from the European record labels page.  Men make up 63% of our followers and the top locations for our followers are as follows, US, Poland, Germany, Mexico, UK, France.

Looking at graphs I can see the few times we have sponsored posts their reach is over 10X the organic post and you can see some corresponding boost in page likes as well as followers for those times though in some ways it's a bit underwhelming. It is clear that sponsoring posts will lead to a boost all around but perhaps this is because we are an underground band that does not appeal to general audiences yet you really should not expect huge results. If we can just continue what we have been doing we should continue to pick up a growing online following.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Week Fourteen: Post 1 Sponsored Ad examples

So the first ad I would sponsor for Cosmic Void is one simply highlighting the release of my bands LP that was recorded here. Right now that is the most important thing going on and would take precedence over promoting the studio itself.
This is a sample of the post I would boost and I went ahead and created a target audience that would work quite well for this post. 

After boosting the post about the LP itself I created a photo ad announcing that I will be accepting recording and lessons clients this winter. I used the Cosmic Void hand painted logo and would use the same targeted audience (with an audience size of 2.7 million specific people in the southern California area) 

Finally, I decided to show some of the insights to a boosted Ad that I only began running a couple of days ago. This is for an upcoming concert we are playing this weekend and is specifically targeting the Los Angeles audience only. This is the final push for the ad and only is running something like 5 days in total but in just two of those days it reached almost 600 people.  Having a large push at the end should help bring people into the show on Saturday. 
Now that the weekend is over I can say that there was a definite noticeable effect on the shows which were both huge successes. Sponsoring ads and events really can help.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Week Thirteen: Post 2 Sponsored Posts

Sponsored posts have really become the bread and butter for Facebook and in my opinion, there is no better way to advertise through Facebook. In the past few months, my band has been running a number of sponsored posts and you can clearly see their effect and added reach by checking the insights section of the page. Generally, a post will reach thousands more than it typically would and you have a couple choices in who the post is reaching.

Beyond sponsoring ads we occasionally run banner ads on websites. Generally they charge you for a number of appearances such as 100K times or so. This is always done through an advertising company who handles ads for the site (usually a number of similar sites). I have found too that these advertising agencies generally run specials for smaller entities who want to run banner ads, we were offered one that would generate 100K times and run across every site on their network for only $200 because we are not signed to a major label. Not a bad deal.