Fan Engagement: Zoe Keating

I’ve been a fan of Zoe Keating for years. Besides enjoying her music greatly, I’ve also been very interested in the way she interacts with her fans. She’s used today’s social media landscape exceptionally well to build her brand, and a career as a musician within a very unique niche.

Her main tools for engagement are:

What’s a bit more surprising to me are the tools she doesn’t use. Her YouTube channel is pretty spare, and not recently updated. Considering how much I’ve heard about video being “the” thing, looks like she’s experimented with it and has moved along. Now, if you search for her music there, you’ll find tons of videos, but that’s mostly uploads from fans, interviews and such. Also, her music has been uploaded to Vimeo, but, again, not by her. So, she’s present in the world of video, but not deeply so.

I’m also surprised she doesn’t have any campaigns on Patreon nor on Kickstarter. Now, her music is available on iTunes, Spotify, and many other online services. So she might not feel the need to have these income streams. Other musicians and artists in similar styles and viewpoints use them quite heavily, like Amanda Palmer.

Considering all that, it’s important to look at which of these avenues is the most profitable to her. As the chart below shows (created by the folks at Business Insider), most of her income comes from iTunes, Bandcamp and Amazon.

Graph of Zoe Keating's income sources
A look at Zoe Keating’s income sources

* Some thoughts on Fanbridge: I imagine it’s a great tool, and it is competitively priced. But it’s important to point out that Mailchimp is quite a bit cheaper, at least at the start. I also wonder if it interacts with any specialized CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tools. That would certainly bump up the value of Fanbridge. Mailchimp plays well with several CRM tools. Also, some of the serious competitors, like Constant Contact or Salesforce have those tools fully baked in. With that, I’m unaware of Zoe using any CRM tools. Doesn’t mean she doesn’t, just don’t see anything.

Lastly, Ms. Keating speaks some to these point in the video below. Worth your while.

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This was originally posted here. 

Rolex and the Apple Watch, Heirlooms and Value

Recently I saw an ad for Patek Phillipe , which got me thinking about their brilliant ad campaign: “You never actually own a Patek Philippe, you merely look after it for the next generation.”

With that is all the energy around smartwatches, with the most iconic: the Apple Watch. Consider, though: that last thing my son will want to inherit from is an old smartwatch, even an Apple one, which is probably the most interesting one. My current Fitbit Blaze will be an amusing relic in another few months. Even the loveliest smartwatch will have no value within a few years.

An heirloom watch, though, still has value and will be cherished for generations. Even in this age of techophilia. Tech stuff (watches, phones and whatnot) are slaves to Moore’s law and the inevitability of obsolescence. Timelessness doesn’t exist in this space at all.

The emotional connection with a piece of quality craftsmanship, owned by a loved one has a richness not considered by the tech world. We focus so terribly much on “the Next Thing” and lose track of quality, of richer value, of intergenerational connection. Perhaps exempting stock portfolios.

I wonder if tech can ever capture that element of fine living. Will there ever be a smartwatch/phone, what-have-you that will mean more to the next generation than it does to this one?

Somehow I doubt that. I expect, for tech items at least, that obsolescence will remain as fatal as it’s always been.

“Son, here’s my Palm Treo. It was handed down from my grandfather to my father, to me and now to you.”

I truly believe that, eventually (soon?), we’ll recapture of love with our history. Then we’ll again value quality and craftsmanship; these things that embrace what’s truly timeless. And it will be a good thing.