Saturday, December 15, 2007

Creating and Running a Street Team

by Brandon Marcel Cherry

In this articles the author explain various keys as to how a musician is to choose street team members, manage them, and create an effective and efficient crew.

One great way to increase your fan awareness in with the help of a street team. A street team is a group of members (usually your top fans) that either you pay or that volunteer to help you out in various ways. The most common way that street teams are used within the music industry is for artist promotions and publicity. Everything from going online and telling friends, helping with Myspace/You Tube Exposure, talking about you in forums, chats, and comment sections to hanging posters, passing out flyers and other swag is done by your street team members.

As stated above, many street teams (especially indie) are free to enter and don’t involve any type of compensation. There usually should be some level of screening however to protect you from the potentially lazy, deceitful, and image damaging individuals that may attempt to join your team. Simply because if those you have out representing you are also behaving badly or in any sort of negative manner, at least while they are out promoting on your behalf, it makes you as an artist come off looking bad. Important relationships with venues and other key people and places to your career can be permanently damaged, leaving you with less and less contacts to turn to.

You should always choose team leaders to lead each offline task you perform. Make sure this individual is trustworthy and an effective team member themself. Once this is accomplished give them weekly or monthly tasks and agendas and ask them to delegate how the tasks are to be achieved. The main key with a street team is to reduce the actual amount of marketing and promotions time you as the artist are forced to maintain. You’ll still have to continue marketing yourself, but this way you’ll have more time and a much deeper reach than on your own. Online you can simply place the most tech savvy individual on your team to go about delegating the tasks you have chosen for either a specific week or an entire month. This can be things like having them to ask people to join your Myspace, visit your site, place banner ads on their various sites and calling radio stations in their area requesting your songs, but always give a specific amount or goal so that members have something to strive toward.

One final key is that you should set up everything up for the specific task. This meaning you should have posters, flyers and other swag or internet banners, radio station phone numbers and address, etc. printed and ready to go before you ever assign a project. Don’t abuse your street team by making them go pick up items or create them on their own (except for tasks/contest for creating fan websites, banners, etc.). They probably aren’t getting paid and are doing this solely to promote and support you, so take care of these types of things ahead of time for them. Finally, remember to reward your street team members, give them access to you other fans don’t get, give prizes to the top performing team members and give away personalized items to help show that you really appreciate them. Do these things and watch in amazement as your street team begins to bring you promotions and exposure like you’ve never even imagined before.

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