More and more I’m seeing bands attempting to build their fanbase through Vlogging. The bad news is that it usually doesn’t work. But if you’re looking for a genuine way to engage and increase your audience I have a top tip - try podcasts.
The most popular Youtube channels are by gamers, followed by a few comedy and beauty channels, and they’re all part of an oversaturated market full of people desperate to copy the top 1% that actually make any money. I believe that if you aren’t one of these already you've missed your chance to hit the big time on YouTube by at least 5 years.
I can name a couple of music related blog channels that are good, Boxtape for example have a great channel. But in the main it’s not hitting the spot.
So what about Facebook? They're pushing video right?
Interestingly 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound! Not much use for a musician trying to get more people to hear their music by Vlogging. Unless you have a SUPERB first 5 seconds, most people will just skip past it.
Podcasts on the other hand are on the rise and I suggest you start one!
Awareness is key here. Podcasts have not reached their peak in the way that vlogs have. 50-60% of people in the UK now know what a podcast is, approximately 5million listen to them. In the US, current trends suggest that 130million Americans will be regular podcast listeners by 2026. Regular is the key word here as one-off listener numbers are higher but present more difficult challenges down the line.
Some of the upward trend in people listening to podcasts is to do with production and availability - The quality has got better, they’re easier to produce than ever before, and they’re more freely available across a number of channels (especially if you use something like Anchor to publish them (https://anchor.fm/).
I predict that now is the time to get on this. Find something relevant that you/your band cares about and podcast about it. Start monthly, or bi-weekly. If live podcasting is an issue record them in bulk and schedule them to go out over a period of weeks.
Create a series about your next release, a mini series about your next video, tell us what you care about, what you stand for, new bands you’ve discovered, top 5s, anything interesting and relevant. Interview your mates, band members, producers, engineers other podcasters, anyone relevant!
Find a niche, talk about it and make it a thing. Get in now while it’s still a young and growing market. And you know what, when you’ve recorded it stick it on YouTube as well if you really want to, video isn’t at all dead - but I don’t believe vlogging as a band is going to get you noticed.