Rynda presenting @ MIDEM 2013: Marketing – Fan-to-Fan Marketing for Artists & Brands

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Today’s marketing strategies must go beyond the direct-to-fan model for maximum impact. Artists and brands can expand reach by working with and inspiring fans to share and communicate their vision. Various methods can be used to maximize engagement within a fanbase while also expanding the reach to new fans. Discover how innovative ideas, cross marketing among platforms, working with startups, and building strong communities can help you set up a successful fan-to-fan marketing strategy.

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OC Register: Manager: Myspace must connect artist and fan

Manager: Myspace must connect artist and fan

Digital manager Rynda Laurel says Myspace’s biggest competition is time.


Fullerton native Rynda Laurel owns 1968media, a digital management and business development company. Her clients include The Smashing Pumpkins, Chuck D, and The Afghan Whigs. She was an early adopter of Myspace, and after watching the video preview of the “new Myspace,” she answered questions about the future of the social network owned by Specific Media in Irvine.

Digital manager Rynda Laurel says that artists are already busy with digital tools, and Myspace needs to convince them, and their fans, that the reborn social network is worthy of their limited time.

Q. What do you think of the video of the new MySpace?

A. It’s too fast to understand the message. If you watch it all the way through without pause, at the end you think “what was that?” Once I paused it after each new section and looked at what they were trying to convey, it made more sense.

It should have been broken down into two videos. One for users/fans and one for artists/brands. They are clearly trying to appeal to both in the video, but if you are a fan you don’t care about analytics, and if you are an artist it takes too long to get to you.

My main question: is this a social network for engaging with your friends about everything like Facebook and Twitter, or engaging with your favorite artists, or discovering music? If they are trying to be all things, they are going to have a harder time with messaging to each segment.

Q. What was the problem with the old MySpace?

A. In the beginning there was no problem. We got our training wheels on MySpace, learned how social networks worked, learned the power of sharing online, and even learned some HTML. It was a great place to express yourself, reconnect and hear about new music. It was an amazing place for artists. Had it been used authentically, perhaps it could have sustained as an artist community.

The thing is, MySpace got crowded and some of us wanted to go to college, so we found Facebook. Then, once we got our education on Facebook and our families joined, we wanted to go out in the real world and have direct conversations, so we incorporated Twitter into our lives. I think we as fans simply outgrew it. If fans migrate, artists migrate.

Q. What will it take for MySpace to become popular again with artists?

A. A concrete point of difference and reason for both artists and fans to reinvest time into the platform. There is a huge difference between being on the platform, maintaining your profile, and engaging. The question is, how will MySpace get artists to want to engage? What is different? Then, how do they get fans to engage?

Strategically, I would think they should focus on the connection between the artist and the fan within the platform and show a reason why both parties should be engaging there more than anywhere else on the web.

The one advantage MySpace has is that Facebook does not cater to artists at all, even with the integration of great tools such as BandPage, Bandsintown, Spotify in the feed, etc, it will never feel like a music-centric place. Also, with their new algorithm less people are seeing the artists’ posts. Unless that changes, and you don’t have to pay for exposure, artists and digital marketers who know better will spend their time engaging elsewhere. Hence the move to more engagement on Twitter and Instagram.

Again, if MySpace can show the artist and the fan why they should invest precious time there, they may have a chance. I can think of a million ways to do that, let’s see what they come up with.

Q. What will it take for MySpace to become popular again with entertainment fans?

A. Same answer as above, just switching focus. Why will I spend time there? What is the advantage? If there is one, it was not clear in this video.

Q. Does MySpace have any competition for musicians in social media?

A. The main competition is time.

No matter what, an artist must maintain and engage on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. Add in Instagram, 10,000+ new music startups, direct-to-fan mailing lists, selling music, getting gigs, and most importantly writing great songs and practicing one’s craft, who has time to devote much less re-devote to another network?

As a fan, everything online is competition to MySpace.

ReverbNation is the one platform that combines an artist’s front-facing profile for fans to view, plus numerous tools for them to help spread their message across all social media. It is a great place for emerging artists.

As a social network for artists of all genres, there is no one stop shop for fan engagement and artist tools that is music-focused. There are places for fans to engage with artists, places for fans to engage with other fans, and places to socialize around music, but no all-in-one place that is music focused.

Myspace competition is the fragmented space of all of the social media and music platforms. It seems like they are trying to reestablish the idea that they offer it all, but their vision is not compelling enough yet. They have not clearly shown me why I need to engage there again: as a social space, as a music fan, or as a digital manager for artists.

Contact the writer: ksablan@ocregister.com

Myspace needs more than friends to succeed

Silicon Beach Fest Showcases Southern California’s Digital Innovation

Silicon Beach Fest Showcases Southern California’s Digital Innovation 

To showcase the digital innovation happening all over Southern California, the first Silicon Beach Fest was held in Los Angeles last weekend. To bring you the inside scoop, we went to three panels at Hotel Erwin in Venice, CA, to hear digital media experts working onThe GrammysTeam Coco, Fox Broadcasting, the Smashing Pumpkins, Social TV plus a Social Enterprise Panel doing social good. While many view Silicon Valley as the start-up hub, Silicon Beach is on the rise.After organizing 7-8 panels/month, Digital LAcreated this conference that was presented by engage: BDR. The conference included keynotes (Eric Garcetti, LA City Council Member), a hackathon and themed venue hub events organized and / or hosted by companies (PromoJam, Google, TechZulu), accelerators (StartEngine, Amplify), as well as coworking spaces (Coloft, CoWorks, io/LA, Cross Campus, and Working Village.)

Rynda Laurel (1968 Media, Digital Manager, Smashing Pumpkins) moderates Music Panel at Silicon Beach Fest
Photo credit:
by Liz H Kelly

Some of the panel hubs featured were the Startup Hub, Leadership Hub, Hollywood Hub, Branding/Ad Hub and Hollywood Trek. Fest attendees and speakers included invited celebrities, start-ups, VCs, movie and music studio execs, agencies, fashion, content creators, artists, social media gurus, developers, and more that traveled from all over the country to Southern California.

The Music: Discovery and Social Media Panel included Rynda Laurel (1968 Media, Digital Manager, Smashing Pumpkins), Andrew Mains (Mobile Roadie COO), Lindsay Gabler (The Grammys, Social Media), Ricardo Diaz (TBWA/Chiat/Day, Director, Creative Technology) and Thomas Ford (Soundrop, US Ambassador.) The group debated the best ways to create a new experience for music fans through social media and live events. Another hot topic was whether artists should give music away for free to attract audiences to live events or protect their IP online.

This music panel was interactive, and took a poll about how people find music, and many raised hands for Spotify, Pandora, and Tumblr. Lindsay Gabler, The Grammys, spoke about their most recent awards show that was the biggest social media event ever, “This past campaign was huge in terms of our mobile strategy. Grammy Live is a 3-day live streaming of all Grammy coverage. We had our iPhone app, the iPad app, basically wherever you want to experience the Grammys or music, we’re there. And that’s how we look at everything.”

Read rest of article here: Silicon Beach Fest Showcases Southern California’s Digital Innovation 

Congrats to everyone who participated in this first Silicon Beach Fest. And big shout out to Kevin Winston (Digital LA Founder and former Fox Interactive Media/MySpace co-worker) and the 150 volunteers on your huge success. For more digital entertainment panels and events in Southern California, visit http://digitalla.net

© Liz H Kelly @LizHKelly, National Digital Entertainment Columnist, Goody Awards,http://goodyawards.com

Bandzoogle Blog: Marketing Your Music: Rynda Laurel on Social Media, Visual Marketing & Philanthropy

Marketing Your Music: Rynda Laurel on Social Media, Visual Marketing & Philanthropy

Hello Zooglers! Welcome to a new series of blog posts where we will interview experts in music marketing to offer tangible advice for artists and bands. We’re kicking things off with an interview with Rynda Laurel:


Rynda is a partner at DigiStar which is focused on working with established music artists and iconic entertainers on a variety of content and marketing initiatives. She also consults for various startup and technology companies. You will often find her speaking at international conferences including Social Media Week, DigitalLA, Girls in Tech, Canadian Music Week, MaMA Music, East Coast Music, MIDEM and SXSW.

As part of her belief and passion for giving back, she founded CauseWeRock, is on the advisory board of Sweet Relief and has participated in philanthropic events such as DigitalLA Green, Fair Fund, Twestival, Live Earth and MusiCares MAPFund.

Q: With all of the free social media networks out there, is having your own website still important for artists today?

Yes without a doubt. That’s like asking if we need the sun to survive. A dedicated website with your name as the url is crucial. It is the life force of your social media and digital universe. Let the platform of planets revolve around you not you around them. We once thought the earth was the center of the universe like Facebook does now – then we discovered that we revolved around the sun. Same thing. Really all planets (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google+, MySpace, etc..) should revolve around the sun. Wow did I just go there? I wonder what @astroengine would say about that!

Q: Once an artist is using social media, what should they be talking about?

If artists start thinking of using these tools as another creative outlet as opposed to a chore their parents (aka mangers) asked them to do then it should come naturally.

That said- there are many ways to express who they are as a person and as an artist. Although some fans want to know the intimate details of their morning shower, what they really want to know is what makes an artist tick. Is it other artists? pop culture? world news? movies? sports? nature? food? photography? science? clowns? Talk about it.

I’d also say that expression and connection can be made without words. The Twilight Singers, for example, post beautiful photographs, art and random music videos of artists of all genres intertwined with fan photos, personal photos, interviews, show dates and live videos. It is perfect for them – it expresses their artistic and musical tastes without saying a word literally -it is authentic to who they are.

I can guarantee every artist is a fan of another artist. Someone inspired them to play music – hopefully it was Led Zeppelin. If they asked themselves what they, as fans would want to know about their favorite artist through these tools and do that – then they are on the right track.

Q: “Direct-to-fan” is a big buzz phrase these days, is it a passing fad or here to stay?

A passing fad? If you mean like the 60’s-gone but influencing every generation after? Then it’s still no. Direct-to-fan is really nothing new there are just no middle-multi-million dollar salaried-men in between the artist and the fan anymore. The fans won’t have it. The system has broken down. It’s the “Summer of Love” for artists and fans.

Q: How focused should artists be today on interacting with their fans?

Here again if the artist starts thinking of these fans as part of their family and artistic community they will want to interact with them. Fans are the artists extended family-not always chosen but loved none the less. How could they not interact with them?

Q: What is branding and should artists pay attention to it?

They shouldn’t. They should just make sure everything has the same “look and feel” across all of their “creative spaces” which includes their “album” art, website, social media platforms, press materials and merch. A good logo never hurt anyone either. Think about Foo Fighters – see the double F’s? The Doors in block font? Basically an artist wants to be VISUALLY MEMORABLE – that is all branding is to me.

Some technical advice: Hexadecimal (Hex) codes- figure out what they are. Pick three and use them everywhere. Use the same font everywhere. Have a square logo and photo – all social media avatars are square.

Q: You’re quite the avid photographer, what advice would you give to artists about photos? Is a good band photo important for their promotion/marketing efforts?

Yes, I started taking live photos of bands many many years ago and realized I could make time stand still for just a fraction of a second. It is magic. I’ve shot band press shots before too – it is about using the tools (lighting, framing, processing/filters) to bring out the “essence” of who they are as artists.

Advice for artists? It is about expressing yourself in an artistic manner that shows in one shot who you are as an artist at that point in time. Be authentic and don’t let a stylist tell you how to dress.

An Artist “press” photo is important in the over all “look and feel” so it should match your “visually memorable” goal.

Q: How much time initially do you think artists should be spending on marketing/promotion vs. rehearsals/creation, etc.?

Initially: As in an artist just starting out? First, practice, practice, practice. Write good songs with melodies and lyrics that will resonate with people. Practice some more. Write more songs. Practice. LOVE what you do. Write another song. Come up with a great band name if you need one. Practice. Record a few and see how everyone works under pressure, write more songs, practice, record some demos, practice, book some gigs, play around town, (maybe start an e-mail newsletter list around this time) make sure you like your bandmates – you will have to live with them in a dark smelly van – practice – write more songs – and by then if you still want to do it, practice some more, write another song, and if you still want to do it then… take a handful of those songs and put them in a format that people can hear while you are not there (like a CD or digital download) and then……

…Tackle “the look and feel” “visually memorable” non marketing marketing by getting your “press materials” together and building your website and THEN start sharing on social media. If the drummer hasn’t quit by then he/she will probably do it.

Q: Most marketing & promotional talk these days is about online strategies and social media, but what offline strategies should artists also be focusing some attention on?

All strategy should probably focus on the live performances. PERIOD.(see why I suggested they practice?) That is essentially one of the main ways artists make money. It will be slow at first but I will tell you that I’ve seen plenty of multi-platinum artists who now sell out stadiums play their ass off for 10 people on a Tuesday night. All strategies should be about getting people to your shows – which goes back to online strategies and platforms that help you book gigs and sleep on people’s couches. (see: @betterthanthevan)

Q: Philanthropy is very important in your career, do you think it’s important for artists to give back through work with charitable organizations?

Philanthropy is important to me personally. I have been lucky enough to be in a career where I can use my relationships to facilitate opportunities and I am proud to be on the advisory board for @SweetRelief. It is important for an artist to be authentic- so if giving back is part of who they are as people then of course they should. There are many ways to give back and of course different levels. (FYI Artists – check out @downtime)

Q: When an artist supports a cause, is there a danger of being pigeon-holed? Can you possibly support a cause too much?

If an artist is passionate about a cause then they can do as much as they want for a cause – the only “pigeon-hole” danger is when it comes to politics and/or issues that are considered “moral” issues. Again, if an artist feels strongly about it then more power to them – for example artists like Steve Earle & Tom Morello are known for their activism and it suites them.

Q: Bonus question: I read somewhere that you’ve met Elmo?! Please explain the context of that, and also, please tell us if he’s as tempting to tickle as he appears to be.

HA! Yes, I spent 8 years at Sony Wonder, the children’s division of Sony. There I worked on multiple Sesame Street projects including they 35th anniversary box set. He is quite ticklish. An even better story is when I told David Bowie – jokingly of course- that we wanted him to dress up as Big Bird and go on tour with Elmo. Luckily he got my humor and laughed along. True story.

For more about Rynda Laurel, visit her website: www.rynda.me or follow her on Twitter:https://twitter.com/rynda
(read original story)

Digital Music Forum West: Rynda’s Twitter Notes

Due to a few requests here are some of my notes and comments via Twitter during DIGITAL MUSIC FORUM WEST.  (for info on all the great speakers etc check out the DMFW website.)

Also here are the rest of the #dmfw tweets:  http://twitter.com/#search?q=dmfw

Digital Music News (@digitalmusicnws) also posted some great info.

I have highlighted some important MUSIC RESOURCE and ARTIST TOOLS. Follow these services for more information on them – tell them @rynda sent ya!


day 1

#DMFW where is @spinaltap (@ Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel w/ 2 others)

#dmfwest @spinaltap @nedsherman @mobileroadie in the house…

RT @TAGStrategic: Ted’s opening remarks @ DMFW: we need better licensing, sustainable margins, acceptable price points, and dialogue. #dmfw

Ya’ll know that Ted Cohen is @spinaltap right? Follow him! #DMFW

Hoping some of these presentations will be available online to review later (hint). #DMFW

WOW Ted Mico just pulled out a Captain Beefheart reference. He is my new favorite. #dmfw

Music in the Cloud panel w/ Aydin Caginalp, Albhy Galuten (Sony), @mp3tunes @mog @thumbplay @BridgeCo ps>Where’s @soundcloud? #dmfw

Jeff Price (@tunecore) and Ted Cohen (@spinaltap) kiss and make up. #DMFW photo to prove it> http://ow.ly/i/4mPF

#dmfw @GetGlue might be a good music discovery/word of mouth marketing tool – esp for catalog artists (i ♥ jellyfish) http://bit.ly/9SGhHc

Good Question – what about #GeoLocation #LBS and #music? #DMFW Good answers from @moblieroadie@brocksteady & Mitch Rotter (uni)

yes – Artist to Fan engagement is the key

PS> check @eventful for touring requests… #dmfw

Discussion about ticket sales with @stubhub – dunno what I think about it yet… does the artist get a cut? #dmfw

?Is it wrong to resell a concert ticket? Why? Not sure f I agree but @stubhub has a point-is it different frm re-selling a Hockey tic? #dmfw

Paperless concert tickets suck without any transferability. if I can’t go to a show-I want to give the tickets to my sister! thoughts? #dmfw

#dmfw RT @SuCrew @rynda @stubhub tricky issue-1 thing to buy tix & have plans change-another to buy tix with intent to make profit reselling

#dmfw RT @a2d2: @rynda transferable online tickets. Cede ownership via email, online confirm. VidGame channel resellers like Steam do it now

Thanks #DMFW for an informative and excitement filled day! #coctailtime


day 2
(@ Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel w/ 3 others)

Check out The Highway Girl @SamanthaMurphy a traveling music TV show &… community for artists… www.samanthamurphy.com/ #music #dmfw

Digital Copyright is important but it gives me a headache. Plus much like government what say do the little people have? #music #dmfw

(re Digital Copyright) @SamanthaMusphy: @rynda that’s why we have to change things. It gives me a headache too, but if not us then who? #dmfw

to @SamanthaMurphy yes I totally agree

check out @skullcandy -“killer headphones” Who owns a pair? . #dmfw

.@skullcandy sends their finance guys out on tour. Love it. #dmfw

RIck Alden (@skullcandy) have you met Tony Heisch from @Zappos you guys both promote culture environments in the workplace. #awesome #dmfw

yea! @DigitalLA in the house… #dmfw

I’m a fan of both @bandcamp and @topspinmedia who are on the #DMFW #diy panel today- Check them out if you don’t already know about them. #music

DIY tools for artists in addition to @topspinmedia @bandcamp = @reverbnation @eventful @nextbigsound @artistdata +use @hootsuite #dmfw

oooh forgot @rootmusic for Facebook! #DIY Artist tools. #dmfw

Music Artists > for #DIY – go get @cyberpr Ariel Hyatt’s book @musicsuccessin9 #dmfw

Music Artists: If Social Media overwhelms you-get someone who loves to do it & get them to help you-but make sure u r still connecting #dmfw

#DIY YES! John Boyle brings up the topic of Team Building for DIY- which makes it Do It With a Team. DIWT (or do it with twitter? smile #dmfw

really good question! RT @betsykcrw: Do you think Kurt Cobain would’ve been tweeting? (DIY Music in the Digital Age at #DMFW)

Brands & Music panelwith> @guvera @pigFACTORYmusic @Yahoo @brandracket @7digital @LinchpinDigital #dmfw

Great Brands and Music resource out of the UK: http://www.brandsbandsfans.com/ and http://www.fruktcomms.com/category/news/ #dmfw

RT @digitalla: Some useful tips here… #DMFW RT @mashable Top 10 Twitter Tips for Bands, By Bands http://t.co/60tnOb0

Some people to follow from the #touring panel @nicadler @theRoxy @jordanglazier @eventful @KelliRichards @controlroom #dmfw

@RootMusic sure thing! you want to see my favorite @RootMusic FB page? see @RyanBingham btw>i think u should b able to xport gigs 2 calendar

Don’t wanna miss local concerts? In addition to @eventful check out the @ilikelocal concerts app and/or @bandsintown and @gigzee #dmfw

oops forgot @songkick #music #concerts #DontMissThem! #dmfw

Nothing is going to replace a being in a venue sweaty and loud… with your friends... @nicadler #music #touring #dmfw (totallyagree)

ditto! RT @TAGStrategic: Excellent second day at #dmfw. Congrats to Ned, Tinzar, Jay and team!

you’re welcome- great event! RT @TinzarT: @rynda @TAGStrategic Thank you so much! We appreciate your support. Have a great night!

Till next time…



Presenting at MaMA International Music Event: Tools for Artists

Heading to Paris to speak at MaMA Music!

I will be presenting:


offered by af83média, web agency

Our HOW TO tutorials are a simple and accurate explanation of the latest web applications.

We help teach both novice and expert to gain a better understanding of the tools available

HOW TO use web-based tools synergistically for Social Media Marketing, Content Curation and Community Management.

Friday October 15th, from 2.30pm to 3.15pm, Elysée Montmartre, English-speaking workshop

HOW TO manage and measure your presence on the web:

Audience measurement, e-reputation, buzz and interaction with communities.

Saturday October 16th, from 12.30am to 1.15pm, Elysée Montmartre, English speaking workshop

Workshop realised by Rynda Laurel, COO af83inc, International Strategy af83 & af83média


Girls in Tech PR & Marketing Panel Reviews & Photos

Girls In Tech PR & Marketing 3.0 Panel:

On April 22, the Los Angeles chapter of Girls in Tech hosted an incredibly successful PR & Marketing 3.0 panel. The turnout was above and beyond what we expected and we were thrilled to be able to engage so many great minds on such a relevant topic.

The amazing panelists (if I do say so myself) were: Rynda Laurel @rynda (AF83, Bearstech & Hackable:Devices), Heather Meeker @heathermeeker (Whrrl), Babette Pepaj @bakespace(Bakespace, TechMUNCH & The Daily Bits), Amanda Coolong @acoolong (Tech Zulu, ThisWeekin.com & Beta PR) and me, Christine Kirk @luxuryprgal (Social Muse Communications)
Click here for the rest of the GIT Blog Post and here for Photos
Published: April 28,2010 | girlsintech.netGirls In Tech – Where Geeky Girls Rule