Posts Tagged ‘ Chi Guy ’

Making Moves – Building a local following

Building a local fan base has been tough because I didn’t grow up in New York, so I’m kind of starting fresh. Figuring out where to begin has been difficult. I’ve realized though that I have been thinking too big picture. It’s better to focus on smaller fish in the beginning, find exposure to different circles and try to bring people from those circles together.

I recently spit a few bars at a cypher during Barrelhouse Bklyn’s Yo Barrelhouse Raps BBQ. It felt great to introduce myself to such a tight knit group of people. Barrelhouse has, over the past few years, successfully harnessed a Brooklyn based movement of talented rappers, and true hip hop fans, with a lot of positive energy. Here’s a video from the event. I was the lone whitey in attendance, ha…

I’m grateful to have linked up with Barrelhouse and am looking forward to teaming up with them in the future. I’m still working out the details but, if all goes well, Chi Guy will be hosting its first NY shows with Barrelhouse promoting. The first show will be before the end of August.

Like I said in the beginning of the post, I am trying to bring a few different circles together with these concerts to build a solid core of Chi Guy followers. So far the concerts look like me performing (either solo or with a band behind me, The Classical Movement), Scienze and Kris Kasanova (two rappers who I was introduced to by my peoples at Barrelhouse who perform with live instruments behind them), and two electronic/dance DJ sets TBD. The hope is that the hip hop crowd will mix with the DJ crowd well. And who doesn’t like to see hip hop with live instruments?


Facebook Introduces New “Modern Messaging System” (pt. 2)

Hypebot posted an update to the story on facebook’s new modern email system earlier today.

I think this new service could elevate the importance of a single message. If Facebook does a good job of making sure users are getting only messages they really care about, then there will be a heightened expectation level when checking your inbox.

As a 22 year old I hardly check my mail box because there’s RARELY anything of importance to me in it. I check my voicemail a little more because maybe just maybe there might be a diamond in the rough. I check my email eagerly multiple times a day because there’s often important messages. And I get most excited about Facebook notifications because 95% of the time it is something interesting about me or someone I care about. If a marketing message was slipped in there every now and then I would be a little pissed but if it happened less than in my email I would still enjoy my fb notifications more.

Here is the follow up story on Hypebot:

image from t3.gstatic.comThe new service, which will debut Monday with an iPhone app and roll out over the next few months, mimics the behavior of teens who are already abandoning conventional email to converse across multiple platforms in short bursts. But Facebook Messaging could also make social music marketing more difficult. Here’s why:

Messages May Be Filtered Out – While a email address is offered, it’s not required. Whatever the source of email, Facebook promises to use “Friends”, “Likes” and other clues to filter email. So a fan who signed up for a band’s email updates, could find their emails automatically shuttled into an “other” folder if they have not also friended the artist on Facebook.

Facebook says that their system will get smarter over time, so that people that aren’t friends on Facebook but communicate often will show up in the stream. How repeated one way communications like email newsletters will be filtered or allowed to pass into the users main stream is unclear

Too Much Of The Same – A major selling point of the Facebook’s system is that it unifies email, SMS, IM and Facebook messaging into a single stream somewhat like Google’s failed Wave. But that means that artist and marketers who automatically post the same updates to multiple channels risk overloading users of Facebook Messaging.

Is There A Solution? – It’s important not to judge a system that no one has used, and its likely that some of Facebook’s new features will actually enhance the artist/fan relationship. But a first look at Facebook Messages should encourage artists and music marketers to step up their friending efforts now to avoid flitering later and to closely monitor future developments.

Facebook Introduces New “Modern Messaging System”

This article comes from Hypebot. I am very excited to see what Facebook does with this system and what it means for artists. Considering that Facebook is quite possibly the best way to reach new fans online, this service could put some space between Facebook and its main rivals Twitter and Myspace.

The full article:

image from During a press conference today Facebook announced a new “modern  messaging system” that combines email, text messaging, instant messages and Facebook messaging into a single stream that founder Mark Zuckerberg says goes “beyond email”. Users can get an email address, but it is not an essential component of the system and can continue to use their current email address.

Citing how teens are already moving away from email as “too slow” and towards text messages and IM,  Facebook designed the new product to both serve their needs and those of more traditional email users. Most of the features will roll out over the next few months and are for now invite only.Zuckerberg broke the new product into three main components: seamless messaging, a stored conversation history and an integrated social inbox.

Making Moves Week 4

This week involved a lot of organizing and planning. The good news is that I have my first official concert as Trevor the Trash Man coming up at Crash Mansion! The bad news is that the process of making a music video is taking longer than I would like. Putting together promotional material like video and photos, requires people, equipment and mutual free time, but things are finally getting going at least. In these early stages I just want things to move faster and faster.

I teamed up with a company that my friend, Richardson Bosquet, from BU, formed called the Artform Collective. They are doing launch parties in Boston and New York, and then taking it international to London, Paris, and Amsterdam. The NY launch is going to be at Crash Mansion, which is a very legitimate NY concert venue/club. I have begun planning for that show by setting up a lighting/effects team to put together a memorable concert experience.

My mixtape (The Classical Movement pt. 2) is over half way done now. I have released 3 songs, and 2 more are finished and waiting to be released. 5 more to go…

This week I hope to write and record at least two more songs and film a basic video for my song “What They Say.” The entire video takes place walking along the Williamsburg Bridge in one take. The video will have a gritty feel and will serve as the first video under the Trevor for Trash Man of Brooklyn political campaign. One of the themes is that certain words throughout the song will be emphasized and will flash across the screen like captions of slander in the media from my political opponents.

The Trevor for Trash Man of Brooklyn campaign has evolved a bit. It now features me in a trash man’s uniform splattered with blood and carrying a bag full of body parts in my satchel patrolling the streets of Brooklyn looking for messes to clean up. Muahahahaha. It’s happening. Along with the above mentioned video, I will be taking 50-60 photos. My dear friend/roommate/photography major at NYU, Mike Bump, has agreed to do these photos for me. More on that to come…

Getting More Out of Your Fans

In line with much of what I have been talking about in my Making Moves section, this article on The DIY Musician Blog offers a guide to artists on how to get more out of your fans. It’s like customer service from an artists point of view. I agree with most everything in this article and I think it’s very useful. Before you can employ these techniques you need to take a look at your fans and ask what their commitment level is (whether they would buy a ticket to your show, buy merchandise, or listen to everything you put out, etc.). Because my fan base is at such a beginning stage and is so small, it’s hard to separate them into different groups. But I can still use many of these tips to get more out of the fans I do have.

The full article: How To Increase The Dedication Of Your Fans, vol. 1

Here are some key points:

Instead of trying to cater to the needs of every type of fan, we will be specifically focusing on two actions: turning all of your passive fans (i.e. friends, bandwagon fans, listener and hobbyist) into committed fans, and then turning your committed fans into super fans.

Turning Passive Fans into Committed Fans

The problem with passive fans is that they lack interest. Of course, there is some level of interest in you, your music, or even your presence either online or off, but there is lack of need and desire to stay connected with you on a regular basis.

Listen To Your Fans — Of course, the purpose of this is to hear from your more passive fans, who are typically less involved than your other fans, so you want to make sure that you package this with something of value, maybe a free EP or unreleased track.There are literally hundreds of questions that you COULD ask your fans to better understand what they are looking for from you. But it is important to keep in mind that you don’t want to overwhelm the fans either, as asking them for too much will just drive them away.Once you have calculated the results and have discovered what your fans most desire from you, you must do two things. First, thank them! Second, act upon the results.

Direct Interaction Between Artist and Fans — Though it may be more time consuming, you should take every opportunity to network one-on-one with your fans. A single committed or super fan will spend more money on you than 100 passive fans so it will actually greatly benefit you to network on such a small scale. Talk with fans after shows, respond directly to fans on social media sites, or host live fan sessions on UStream.

Turning Committed Fans into Super  Fans

Empower the Fans — This can most easily be accomplished through a street team. A street team is a team of fans that receive missions based on different promotional strategies (both online and off) and are rewarded with exclusive benefits. Reverbnation offers a FREE street team program and there are many fantastic guides that can be found by a simple google search.

Exclusivity — The idea of alienating a portion of your fan base is consistently one of the most difficult concepts for artists to grasp. However, creating a sense of exclusivity is one of the most effective strategies you can put in place to convert committed fans to super fans. You must create a distinction between insiders and outsiders. This will create a sense of belonging and pride for those already inside and a stronger sense of desire to become an insider by those who have been left outside. Exclusivity can be achieved through contests, special mailing lists, or exclusive fan groups.

Making Moves Week 3 (pt. 2)

This week I focused on expanding upon the initial fan base I built during my first two weeks, and keeping my name on peoples’ minds by maintaining a steady flow of material. I’m planning a major music video project for “The One Who Got Away,” which is scheduled to shoot in a month. Props to Emmett Adler for directing the project, he’s got production team of film majors from BU helping out with the video. I’m hyped.

I’m also organizing a promotional campaign around my mixtape and album coming out in the next months. I’ve asked an old friend from Chicago who is skilled with Photoshop to design the material for the campaign. I’m planning on taking 50-60 photos this week and hope to have videos as well, all with a political theme around me running for Trash Man of Brooklyn.

Key moves:

Facebook Artist Page

  • My artist page has become the place where I acquire new fans and where I direct people I meet outside of facebook. Thanks to ReverbNation’s Band Profile app I have an easy and customizable way for fans to listen to music, and see photos, and videos. At the same time, it’s on facebook where everyone already has a profile (unlike ReverbNation, Myspace or Twitter).
  • The “like” button is very effective because people are making an effort to follow you and share it with their friends, yet they don’t have to go too far out of their way to click that they “like” an artist. It is much more meaningful than a Myspace friend or a Twitter follower to me.


  • I use Myspace as a place to stream my music through my ReverbNation player, and view my feed. Other than that there is a lot of open space left over to promote my music, etc. I placed a banner linking back to my ReverbNation site, and I placed an ad for that earns me band bucks to spend on promotions.


  • I have been working on building up a solid email list, but for so many people I have as contacts on fb or elsewhere I don’t actually have their email addresses. Right now my list includes 40.
  • Networking with other artists on Reverb has been cool. Because I can listen to artists in NY who are at a similar chart position I feel like a few collabo’s may come out of this.

As for Twitter, I’ve kind of neglected it. No disrespect to Twitter, I’m just not as familiar with it, so I have been putting it off. I am definitely looking to get more tweetery going in the future though.

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