As a digital and social media strategist for various indie musicians, it’s my responsibility to keep track of the latest social media trends and how they will affect the music industry. With that said, I wanted to give you a heads up on a few social media trends that will impact the way your music is heard in 2017.

1. Social and Private Messaging Becomes Priority

Messaging apps and bots are on the rise, and Facebook is pushing Messenger to enhance the dialogue between brands and their fans. As a musician, you now have the capability to promote your music directly to fans through Facebook Messenge (via Facebook Ads manager or Power Editor). Keep in mind, this ad placement is only available for campaigns using the ‘traffic’ objective to direct users to a specific website.

2. Instagram To Continue Growing As Organic Reach Steadily Declines

As a musician in 2017 – Instagram should be your primary focus. Between July 2016 and December 2016, Instagram’s monthly active users grew by 100 million users, now surpassing 600 million – with 400 million daily active users. Twitter’s audience is on the decline, and Facebook’s organic reach will continue to drop, which leads to the next social media trend.

3. Increase in Paid Social Media Advertising

Last year Facebook made over $7 billion from social media ad revenue. 80% came directly from mobile advertising. I understand the struggle of being an indie musician, and chances are you do not have a huge budget. Any time you’re planning to release music try to set aside a small fund to invest in advertising – it will go a long way. This is probably the most important of the social media trends mentioned.

4. Streaming Numbers Will Continue To Climb

Begin building partnerships with indie musicians, and start crafting creative ways to get your music included on popular playlists. I’d say start with the smaller playlists and build as your streams grow.

5. Demand For Live Video and Authentic Content On The Rise

If you’re not using Snapchat, Periscope, Instagram stories or Facebook Live, you’re already behind. These features will enhance your engagement across all platforms and is a great way to promote new music, especially if it’s presented in a fun way. Just this past year, Facebook Live broke records numbers since its launch April 2016. There’s been a huge demand for real-time access to brands across social media and as a musician, you are not exempt.

6. Social Shopping Will Receive More Attention

This year social media will expand the capabilities of social shopping – bringing the shopping experience straight to users’ social feeds. As a result, this will streamline the process of selling music, merchandise, and ticket sales through Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat.

In conclusion, there are more ways than ever to get your music heard online. My blog, ‘How To Stand Above The Indie Artist Fight In 2017‘ goes into more detail about how you can differentiate yourself from the thousands of musicians looking to release music this year. Click the link to check it out now.