Artist Branding 101: 3 Tips to Building Your Brand Online

In this generation, it isn’t just about how many followers you have, but also, who are the people following your followers. You have the ability to reach an audience much larger than any other artist in history! You’re not just somebody on the corner handing out their mixtape. You are a brand just waiting to blow up.

When building your personal brand, you can utilize marketing techniques that are usually applicable to businesses, for yourself. Marketers are tasked with trying to be as genuine as possible to convince people to buy their product. You have the advantage of actually being you — with desires and passions that drive you. Sure, in the beginning, it’s going to be slow, but over time you can develop a platform and curate connections with people through your work. Here are three basic branding tips applicable to some social media platforms:

Photo by Sergio Alejandro Ortiz

I learned this from marketing guru, Gary Vaynerchuck. In simpler terms, don’t just create for the sake of your next post. Create for yourself, hustle for your goals and get gigs. Your only concern should be yourself when documenting your life and art for your brand. You framing your stories can build your online presence.

Original photo by Juliette Leufke

Figure out what each platform was designed for, and how it could showcase you and your work the best possible way.

Instagram: Socializing Through Visuals
Besides Tumblr, this is the best way for visual artists to present their work and connect with people. It can also be a gateway to your other accounts. Being that Instagram also has video, it can also help artist like musicians showcase their music. Above all, it’s good for #selfies!

Snapchat: Sharing (Personal) Moments
Snapchat can be a mysterious beast, but that’s what makes it so fun. It’s easy, whimsical, and it forces you to be authentic. Snapchat stories are no fun when you’re less engaging and ungenuine. People want to have real connections, but above all else, you can control what people see. I suggest that you use Instagram Stories if your Snapchat is too private.

Twitter: Socializing at its Max
Twitter is probably the most intimate platform to be on. You can effortlessly communicate with anyone directly and give a robust view to who you are. Comic artists can share their sketches and connect with other artists. DJ’s can even share their mixes with links to their Soundcloud’s. Artists of any medium can utilize Twitter. It’s a space that can help enrich artists and a larger community. Socializing and community are key, this goes for all platforms.

Tumblr: Blogging
Tumblr is such a large platform with various communities that feel a bit insulated. In my opinion, it works well as a living portfolio and benefits visual artists as its own space.

Original photo by Aiden Marples

Know your intent for posting. Do you want Marvel to pick you up and sign you a deal to do covers? Do you want more DJ gigs? Do you want to just build a following and have a place to house your art? Amidst your cute selfies you can post your work with purpose. When curating your space, focus and do your research; build your portfolio based on that.

Remember that your accounts are all interconnected. Where one platform lacks you can supplement with another. You can post your artwork on Instagram, use Tumblr as a portfolio, and share doodles on Twitter. The choice is yours!

Personal branding is an art. No two brands can or should be, exactly the same. It’s not about becoming famous spontaneously; it’s about the sweet spot where preparation and opportunity meet. As an artist, that can make all the difference in the world.

Armoni Boone, Contributing Writer (Tech & Art)
Instagram: @im.armoni

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