BCM 302 Digital Artefact Beta

Before reading, view the first instalment here.

Introduction

October marks the final month of my four-year-long university journey. As such, this semester was my final opportunity to produce a digital artefact, so I wanted to develop something that would best prepare me for entering the workforce in the coming months. Having run Listen Loud – my music blog for fans of the punk, rock and alternative genres – since mid-2020, I decided early on that the continuation of this project would best benefit myself as I’d be able to demonstrate my commitment to a long-term project, and a variety of skills practiced in the process. Additionally, as entertainment business management is a competitive field to penetrate, with limited entry-level employment opportunities available, Listen Loud would also help me stand out against other future applicants by enhancing my existing portfolio.

As discussed in my original pitch, I’d planned to utilise Facebook and Instagram to promote my work and encourage the development of an engaged community of likeminded individuals. I aimed to post once per week, with my ultimate goal being to increase my following on each platform, and planned to utilise Facebook and Instagram Stories to engage my audience between posts. In the following week, I also received significant peer feedback which largely supported my ideas, offering very few recommendations and tweaks outside of my proposed process. However, as I began posting, I quickly noticed several areas I thought could be improved.

Posting

Firstly, I found that I was able to maintain a consistent posting schedule of twice per week, as opposed to my original goal of one. Not only was I receiving a lot more content from artists, but, as I got back into the swing of writing following a brief hiatus earlier this year, I found I was able to get through each post considerably quicker. This increase in posts was also supported by the majority of my peers (68.4%), as evident in the below poll.

Spotify

Secondly, as suggested by a number of users and peers, I created a Listen Loud Spotify playlist with songs featured on Listen Loud, to be updated each Friday. This offered users a new platform to engage with my brand while being simple to manage. As Listen Loud is a music blog, it also seemed a fitting accompaniment, and could be embedded into my website to encourage further engagement.

Video

As a marketing student, I’m very aware of how well video content performs on social media as opposed to still posts and captions. Hence, I wanted to incorporate more audiovisual material in my content moving forward to better engage my audience. After stopping video interviews last year, however, I don’t currently have any original content I can share. Additionally, I’d like to avoid sharing music videos in my feed as (i) Facebook limits the reach of posts with links to external sites (i.e., YouTube), and (ii) videos posted directly to the platform with copyrighted music and visuals will be removed from the platform, with potential repercussions for my page.

Moving forward, I’m hoping to improve my Facebook and Instagram Stories to drive engagement until I’m able to attend events. This will be done through more frequent and consistent posting, the use of audiovisual elements, and the inclusion of interactive stickers, polls and sliders.

Focus

Finally, after observing a decline in engagement alongside an increase in followers, I’ve decided to shift my overall focus. Moving forward, I’ll be placing greater value on engagement as opposed to the size of my audience as this is a better indicator of success and content relevance.

Feedback

With each new instalment, I shared a progress report on my Twitter in the form of several threads, each of which represented a new article. The purpose of these threads was to document and analyse the success of each post relative to those before it, in the hopes of identifying trends in which artists, genres or topics are most appealing to my audience. Twenty-four hours after each post had been published, I noted the number of likes, comments and shares, as well as total reach, as shown below. Often, this was followed up by further analysis and observations, such as the impact certain hashtags may have had on the post’s performance, or whether the artist engaging with the post increased the likelihood of fans engaging, too.

Additionally, each Sunday at 6PM, I shared an overview of my blog’s overall performance that week, including total reach, total engagement and follower growth or decline. This allowed me to assess the overall performance of my blog to determine whether I was achieving my goals. Originally, when my focus was on increasing my audience, I was frequently achieving this as new accounts discovered my blog on Facebook and Instagram. However, after shifting my focus to quality engagement, I’ve found it’s actually on a decline. Hence, it’s most important that I address this issue as I move forward to maximise appeal to my audience and demonstrate the successful management of a community.

4 thoughts on “BCM 302 Digital Artefact Beta

  1. Hi Taylor!

    Great stuff. Listen Loud (as you know) is an effective vehicle that will separate you from future job applicants, and stands as an impressive online portfolio. In your pitch and during tutorials, I mentioned that I was concerned that your content didn’t have enough variation or visual impact. After reviewing your analytics, my suggestion still stands. You have described the utility for Listen loud as a place where “like-minded individuals with a passion for punk, rock and alternative music can be found”. As a strategy to increase engagement to the page you state you will “Reach my desired audience with content that is appealing”. However, I fear that the content may not be appealing as effectively as it could to the said “like-minded individuals”.

    On Facebook, your engagement per post averages at 5 likes, which presents a 0.8% engagement rate. Perhaps this is due to the absence of events, as Facebook is the inherent platform for event communications. On August 19, your “Written by Wolves” post performed 10x better, hitting an 8% engagement rate. I agree, if you can get the artist to engage with your post it boots the traffic to the page. Think of ways you can engage directly with the artists and draw them to the blog. Have you attempted reaching out to them personally and asking them questions? This could be a great way to spice up your content by featuring exclusive content from artists.

    On Instagram, your reach has definitely increased. However, this analytic is what pushed me to re-suggest a content variation or update because 921 of 1064 viewers are non-followers. This means your page is reaching 76.69% more viewers than are following, but you are unable to convert them to followers. Upon looking at other mega-successful music instagram pages such as @billboard, the content is very similar to yours in the sense that they report on activity in the music industry, however visually there is far more variation than what is featured currently on ListenLoud. Instagram is so visually driven, I think you’ve got nothing to loose by switching up how you’re posting.
    If I could give you any advice, it’s to practice anti-fragility in your page. Forget the manicured posts, take risks and embrace FEFO. Genuine, human and unapologetic content gets traction and if it doesn’t, move on to the next risk and iteration. I would love to suggest this book “anti fragile: things that gain from disorder” https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13530973-antifragile

    To wrap up, I am so glad you’ve utilised Spotify. Such an awesome and fitting platform for your work! How is this going? Are you getting much traction? Also, don’t get too bogged down by my comment! It is so evident the consistency and breadth of work you’ve put into Listen Loud and it is well and truly standing on it’s own two feet, I’m trying to think of ways to break through to your next goal: More followers and more engagement.

    I hope you’re well!
    Charlea

    Like

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