There are thousands of touring musicians out there struggling to do what they love. Few will become superstars, most will surrender. I am convinced that somewhere between poverty and celebrity there is a possible comfortable living.
Kevin Kelly at The Technium presents the idea the you can make a living by cultivating 1000 true fans. One thousand people who will buy everything that you produce, sometimes before you produce it, is all the fan base that you need. Will a thousand contributors at a hundred dollars a year support you? There are different ways to do the math. Figure out what you need to make a year and divide by 365 and you’ve got a fan a day. The message is that you can do it.
So how can this happen? You need a plan, a goal, and an effort. Do the math. Where do you need to be? Where are you now? How many true fans do you have? Go to your mailing list, count the true fans. How many do you know? How well do you know them? Can you picture them? The more that you know about them, the more likely that they are true fans. If they are not true fans then they are casual fans, or worse, ex-fans. Count This Penny recently played in front of an audience of 50 and I am certain that they knew them all by name. Their perfomance was electric because of this. Imagine always playing for true fans exclusively.
Got a long way to go to 1000 true fans? The trick is to gain new fans and convert casual fans to true fans. The trick is that it isn’t a trick, it’s a way of life. You can’t have true fans if you don’t have a relationship with your fans. You’ve got to talk to them, know them. Social Media provides the tools that you need to develop the relationships that you begin in person at your shows. A better life begins today.