Social Media Metrics: Good For Work, Not Good For You.

Social media metrics affect a lot in my life. I have been a concert promoter and event coordinator for more than 3 years in Toronto. My metrics on events and promotional posts are crucial to the success of my events, informing me on how many people are aware of the event and the expected attendance which allows me to budget the show. The perception held by other of how ‘Lit’ the event will be, and therefore how attractive the event is to the consumer, is often determined by Facebook’s ‘going’ and ‘interested’ metrics.

The era of record labels signing bands and artists because of musical talent is over. There is not the amount of money in the music industry that there used to be, and as a result record labels are not willing to invest money in something without proof of the safety of their investments. This proof has become social metrics. Record labels are interested in bands who have in-depth knowledge of their social media metrics and who have the ability to demonstrate that they have used this information to grow their band’s presence online and grow their fanbase on their own. As a band manager managing the socials of 2 bands, metrics are everything. When we find concentrated geo-locations of streaming listeners, we use the information to dictate tour routing and social media ad campaigns. We take organic post reach, attendance of past performance event pages, and fan post interaction to negotiate better performance contracts and lineup placements.

However, personally, socially media metrics do not affect my sense of self at all. It seems far-fetched to me that they ever will. My social channels do not focus on building the brand of “Matthew Gibbs”. My personal channels are dominated by growing my professional networks such as connections with bands, agents, labels and other promoters in order to communicate. Those who work in the music industry know that Facebook continues to hold superiority over LinkedIn when it comes to networking. Facebook’s dominance in the music industry is largely due to the it being the largest host site for event pages and for concert announcements.

When you are making an effort to build yourself as a brand or actively grow your social media presences I think that’s when your sense of self threatens to become affected by social media metrics most. I’m not trying to look like the coolest guy in the scene, and I’m definitely not going to look the most glamorous. I don’t care about number of friends or followers on my personal accounts and I find that characteristic in others unattractive. I’m very content with just being me. My sense of self is rooted in my friendships, and relationship and family and those are all fairly unshakeable. It boggles me that many can’t say the same. I may be in the minority when I say this, but I really don’t take my personal socials very seriously and that’s the way I like it. When I get serious is when the social accounts are brands that I’m building such as my bands or event companies, then I’m a metrics hound. Personally however, Im off-limits.

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