Everyone's looking for their 15 minutes of fame, right? Well you can give your fans some time to shine and put your band in the spotlight by featuring fan-created content in your next music video.
Creating a montage of fan-submitted content is quick, easy, cheap, and it ends up looking pretty rad. By featuring fan photos, artwork, or videos in your music video you are able to show your fans how much you appreciate their dedication.
You'll also get more people involved in your band's social media community by encouraging engagement on social media platforms. Plus, the fans you feature will share the video with their friends to show off their cameo.
What does this mean for you? A bigger, better, active social media following means more people showing up at your shows, buying your albums, and spreading the word to their friends.
You can use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Flickr, YouTube, Tumblr, or any of the other countless social media sites you and/or your fans are active on. It all depends on the content you're looking for!
Here are some examples of how some artists harnessed social media to get their fans involved in making a music video:
We the Kings – “Party, Fun, Love, & Radio”
We the Kings asked their fans to post photos of themselves partying on Twitter and Instagram with the hashtag #partyfunloveradio.
The Vaccines – “Wetsuit”
The Vaccines had fans post photos from summer music festivals to Instagram with the hashtag #VaccinesVideo and ended up with this retro-esque, summer-lovin' montage.
Terra Naomi – “You For Me”
Terra Naomi asked her fans, “What do you love?” and received over 10,000 photos on the social photo app Hipstamatic.
Rufus Wainwright – “Out of the Game”
Similar to The Vaccines, Rufus Wainwright invited fans to post photos to Instagram with the hashtag #OutOfTheGame. However, Wainwright asked his fans to submit photos representing one of the words in the lyrics of the song.
In addition to music videos, you can also try engaging fans to create content for a poster like Twin Atlantic, or for album art like The Smashing Pumpkins.
Crowd-sourcing content for your next music video is a win-win for everyone involved. You'll engage your fans, increase fan-base and fan loyalty, and make a music video to promote your latest hit without breaking the bank!
Feel inspired? Try gathering your own fan-generated content, then come back and let us know how it worked!
Guest Post: Jenna Markowski is a member of the content team at Quality Logo Products, a top-notch promotional products company specializing in all kinds of logo merchandise. She loves music and frequently writes about social media tips on their marketing blog.
Wow, I didn’t realize that so many bands had already used crowd-sourced content for their music videos. I’m a fan of We The Kings, and their fans definitely contributed to make a great video. 🙂
What a fun post, Jenna! I love that the bands you mentioned used crowdsourced material for their music videos. As a fan it totally makes me feel more connected to them!
You’re right in that smaller bands could use some of these ideas too, maybe it’s finding their next album cover or t-shirt design. Listen to your fans, they know a thing or two 😉
I love seeing crowdsourced video content, especially when bands do it. The fans win because they’re being featured in a special way, and the band wins because they don’t have to spend as much on an elaborate music video. Plus, I’m sure this reinforces fans’ loyalty to a band. 🙂
Lots of brands are getting in on the crowdsourcing action as well…hopefully it doesn’t get stale! Nice post, Jenna.
First off – shame on “We the Kings”. That’s not a music video they created. That’s a PowerPoint slide show with a moving background image.
I could create a better music video using the Movie Maker software that is included free with Windows 7 and a Beta-max.
Second, and this is the kicker, NONE of these crowd sourced videos contain any cute kitten footage.
What a shame!
Everyone knows if you want your video to go viral you need to include a segment dedicated to a cute cat sneezing or something fun.
As a fan of music; granted not hardcore – I appreciate the opportunity to let fans participate in the creation of your music video, cover art, or anything like that – but YOU the ARTIST should bring a little something more to the table other than a montage of fan photos.
Thanks for commenting, Mandy and Amy!
Mandy – I’m a fan of We The Kings, too, and I was pretty impressed with that music video! I wish I had known about it in advance so I could have gotten involved.
Amy – This technique is probably even more useful for smaller bands than ones who already have a major record deal, because it can cost close to nothing to put together a rad video this way! You’re totally right, bands who listen to their fans are more likely to please. 🙂
Thank you for taking the time to comment, Jill and Bret!
Jill – You’re so right. These crowdsourced music videos are a fun way to show your fans some love and increase fan loyalty!
That’s very true, a lot of big brands have been doing something like this, too. I think as long as everyone is doing something new and creative it won’t get old any time soon!
Bret – You bring up a good point. I agree that the We the Kings video could use some work. While the other videos incorporated the content pretty creatively, We the Kings pretty much just copy and pasted the photos into a template. I also agree that all music videos would be better with more kittens! 🙂