Growing up, my dad used to tell me, “Ryan, don’t be the guy drinking a pineapple mojito when everybody else is drinking IPAs. Don’t be the guy who shows up to a rainstorm in a t-shirt, and flip flops.”
…I’m pretty sure my dad was borrowing from a Malcolm X quote, and butchering it badly, but I get what he was saying: be prepared for what’s coming next. During this uncertain time, the only thing that’s certain is the music has to keep playing. As a performing artist myself, I miss the stage. I miss the vibrations, the sweat. I miss the warmth and aliveness of the crowd.
It’s a hard time to be a performer when all of your fans are staying in, and hunkering down in their living rooms, but I assure you the show can go on. This Pandemic has definitely been a rain storm for all musicians. Fortunately, here at Afton we’ve got an umbrella for you: Live Streaming. Many musicians don’t live stream because they think it’s too complicated, or they don’t know how. That’s why we built the MyAfton LiveStream platform. No streaming experience is required. We teach you how to live stream, how to setup your gear, and we show you how easy it is to get on the virtual stage and perform for your worldwide fan base.
Live Streaming helps you practice for the real thing, because it is the real thing. Remember the good old days when you and your best friend Bernie had nothing to do on a Friday night, so you dropped a green screen in front of your computer and dressed up in Hawaiian shirts, and coconut bras, and sang karaoke songs until your uncle Dan came in screaming at 1 AM to turn the damn music down? Thanks Dan! For nothing!
Live Streaming is like that… but 1000x better.
With MyAfton Live Streaming, Uncle Dan’s not going to be yelling at you to turn the music down. On the contrary, Uncle Dan’s going to be passing out pineapple mojitos to random strangers and screaming at you to turn the music up. And this time, there are 500 Uncle Dans cheering you on from their own private living rooms, in their own Hawaiian shirts and coconut bras.
So, how do you live stream? How can you be effective in your live streaming?
We’ve decided to provide you 5 Tips for live streaming:
1. *STD *- (it’s not what you think!)
*Save The Date:*
It’s very important to send out as many Digital Flyers as you can. At Afton we’ve got digital Flyer Templates you can download and create for free. Click here to get your own Afton Digital Flyer (insert link). Send out the Flyers as early as you can.
Always include promos with your flyers. For example, maybe you tell your fans that if they invite 10 new people to the Live Streaming that you’ll give a shout out to those fans in the middle of your set. Remember, the earlier you send out your flyers, the more effective they’ll be.
2. *Perch the Merch! *
What do we mean by this? There’s never a better time to showcase your own merchandise than when you’re live streaming. By Perch your Merch, we mean put it out there for people to see. You can give PROMOS like: 25% off all merch during live streaming, or once in a lifetime Live Streaming T-Shirt: *Live Streaming and Live Dreaming!* Sell Beads. Or mugs with your bass player’s face on it, or maybe even Uncle Dan’s face on it. Get weird and have fun with it.
Live Streaming is the perfect time to show people how much time and energy you’ve spent on Band merchandise. Make sure your fans see it, so your fans can wear it.
3. *SIR, yes SIR! (Step into the Role & Stories Ignite Readers)*
First, Step Into the Role:
You’re a performer. Whether you’re a rapper, an acoustic act, or a classic rock band, you’re a performer, so step into that role and own it. You have the stage. You have the audience. If you have the people’s attention, what are you going to tell them? Live Streaming is the best time to step into that role.
Second, Stories Ignite Readers: During Live Streaming, you’re the storyteller and everyone tuning in is your audience. They are your readers; tell them a story they’ll never forget. Maybe between songs, you tell them about the time Uncle Dan decided to take you see the Space Needle in Seattle for your 11th birthday, but of course Uncle Dan missed the exit because he didn’t know how to use SIRI, so you ended up at a Seven Eleven instead.
…However, It just so happened that your favorite band MUDCRUSHER was driving through Seattle at the same time, and they just happened to stop at a Seven Eleven to fuel up on Slurpies before the show. Next thing you know, you’re getting your photo taken with the lead singer and backstage passes. Thanks Uncle Dan… for being Technology challenged.
It’s true, stories can inspire nations. When you’re live streaming, what story are you going to tell?
4. *Theme your Stream: *
You might not be an 80s cover band, but you can still dress like one!
Create a theme for your Live Stream debut and invite everyone else to dress up for the occasion. It could be a decade theme, or maybe even Lord of the Rings Themed. How great would it be to look out there and see 500 Hobbits, smoking in their hobbit-pipes and jamming out to your music? If you’re not sure what Theme might grab the attention of your fans, just ask them. Use your Social Media and create a Survey. When you involve your fans in the live streaming experience, by giving them a say in how they want the experience to go, they’re much more likely to show up.
And finally, the best for last:
5. *Grandma Letty! *
Whose Grandma Letty? Grandma Letty is the sweetest 80 year old Grandma in the world. She bakes you cookies, and tucks you in, and she’s your biggest fan. Most importantly, tonight Grandma Letty is your mascot. Invite Grandma Letty into the living room, have her dance, have her sing, have her show your fans that you’re real, that you’re human, and that you know how to have a good time.
In Real time, we hold onto the things that grab our attention and don’t let go. We grab onto symbols. Grandma Letty is the symbol that will last even after the Live Streaming ends. Find your Grandma Letty, whoever she may be. Heck, Grandma Letty could be your Uncle Dan! Invite this person in and show them what you’re doing. It might even be at the beginning of your show. Try this out for example,
“Hey Everyone, this is my Grandma Letty. She’s been my biggest fan, and tonight I want to showcase her and let her know how much she means to me. Grandma Letty’s going to be dancing, rocking out, and having a good time with all of you, so why don’t you say hello to Grandma Letty.”
Believe it or not, Grandma Letty invites you into the experience, even if you’re 1,000 miles away, and all you have is a 2004 Ibook Computer monitor with lag video and slightly pixelated images. Grandma Letty invites you in, and brings you closer.
So find your Grandma Letty, and ask them if they’ll be willing to participate in your Live Stream Experience. Maybe they even know how to play an instrument or sing. Maybe they can be a surprise musical guest. There might be fans that have trouble relating to your “Performer” lifestyle; Grandma Letty might just be their way to relate to who you are.
At Afton, we support your Dream to Live Stream. We support you during this unsettling time. We encourage you to check out our Afton Live Stream Platform. The show goes on. The music goes on. We go on.