Musicians, at least try to be authentic with your mailing lists.
So, I’m on my least favorite social network. The one in which all the bands become your friend and then claim you are their fans. You know what I’m talking about. This, in itself, is the root of the problem. Adding me on said network and claiming me as your fan is like admiring me at a bar then introducing me as your girlfriend. We don’t have that kind of relationship. Cuh-reepy!
If you really want people to connect to you and your music, don’t make this mistake. It’s a huge turn off. I’m more likely to block you from sending me messages than actually listen to your music because you didn’t even try to get it right. How do I know this? Because, I don’t add bands on My_____. On purpose!
Here’s the thing. I don’t add musicians on that network at all (unless they are HUGE and I love them). It happens automatically after a certain number of friends anyway and this happens with everyone so you can’t assume everyone is your fan who accepted a friend request. That’s silly.
I don’t send friend requests on Facebook unless I truly admire your work and, then, I may invite you to my fan page but I don’t assume you’re a fan. That would be presumptuous.
I don’t add you to a an email mailing list unless you’ve personally asked me or you’ve opted in yourself. PERIOD.
Why? Because, if I want our relationship to have a chance at lasting it needs to be HONEST! Authenticity, please.
Despite this, yes, some people will mark ‘spam’ on my email newsletter. I’ve learned to accept that they may have forgotten they’ve signed up and I let it go and honor their request not to connect in that way. It’s okay because I don’t want to be a spammer and I don’t want to be that pathetic date you went on and tried to break up with but keeps showing up at your door singing love songs. Again. Cuh-reepy!
Will this make it harder to build your fan lists? Well, it will require more patience. But, at least then you will have a better relationship with those who are on it and, in the long run, that translates into real fans, real customers and real support for your music. That’s what you want, right?