By now you know that Discord is about to be the next big thing for indie musicians. It’s a mecca for community and the perfect place to grow your fanbase and start to really connect with them about and outside of your music—which you know is key to a strong music career.
But, it’s one thing for me to say that, and another to actually see examples of artists who are crushing it when it comes to this new (to the music industry) platform. It takes things to a whole different level when you can first hand witness and be a part of an artist growing a successful community like that.
So, because we love you, we’ve put together a list of 7 indie musicians who are using Discord (and two majors), how you can replicate that success, and just why Discord is so awesome for indie artists.
Here’s what you’ll find:
We want to start with a Cyber PR artist – who we have done publicity work for in the past and we love their music and spirit. I was there the moment AP’s fans asked them to start a discord. It happened during an IG Live and they followed through! (Awesome on their part!)
Fly By Midnight
Fly By Midnight’s Discord is BUSY. If you have a lot to your brand and music that you want to share, but you’re not sure how to organize it all into something cohesive, check this out. They seamlessly blend music chat, tour memories, and even food, memes, and fan art. They also have their band photo as their server image, so when you’re scanning the side you instantly recognize who it is.
Lindsey Stirling‘s was the first Discords I came across for indie musicians and I was instantly in love. Her fans are incredibly active and show their devotion through their engagement. What I love about this Discord is just how well the server takes care of its fans. It’s not just that it’s so active, it’s little things like a bot that calls out happy birthdays to fans. It’s also filled with different aspects of her brand like channels on cooking and wellness, art, and memes. It’s a great example of how to use Discord to truly grow and nurture a community.
When I first stumbled across Cheekface (labeled Cheekface Bagel Store on their Discord) I had to do a double take to make sure it was not, in fact, a bagel store. Rest assured, it’s not, but it is full of inspiration for the indie musician looking to create their own Discord server.
With loads of channels ranging from info on shows to general band updates, they also sprinkle in channels about pets, art, and yes, bagels and breads, so that their community has tons to do when they hop on.
They’ve also made the roles in their Server different album names, which is a really subtle and clever way for fans to share their favorite music from the band.
One look at Rosa Linn‘s Discord and it’s full of the same personality that makes the artist so irresistible to her fans. This is key—Discord is a place to truly show who you are and to do it among people who already admire you and love your music.
Rosa Linn’s Server is full of the usuals that you’d expect to find like artist announcements, but she’s also peppered it full of channels that align with her brand like movies, polls for her fans, giveaways, and a support ticket channel. It’s like getting to hang out with her backstage—which is exactly the vibe you want to go for.
What I like about Delta Rae‘s Server is how unapologetic they are about incorporating branding and being their most authentic selves. For instance, they have a tarot channel where they pull and describe cards for their fans. It’s one of those things that falls in line with the band’s witchy, spiritual brand and that resonates instantly (and specifically) to their fanbase.
They also have channels for their music and general discussion around the band, but that Tarot channel is a stand out example of how to have fun with your Discord and create exclusive content for it
Pray For Sleep
Pray For Sleep does an awesome job chatting to their fans in Discord just like you would an old friend. With channels dedicated to their music, gaming, and general chatter, it truly does feel like how Discord first started—a place to hang with your friends and chat about all the silly things you love. It’s a great example of a band using Dsicord like they’re among friends. Because at the end of the day, you really are.
Life in Discord – Honorable Mention
Life in Discord was pretty much made to be on this platform. It’s in the name after all. They’re also proof that you don’t have to be a huge band to see the benefits of Discord. Their community is small but mighty and they use it to share what they’re up to in real time through the #share-your-face channel, as well as encourage banter through their general chat and #meme-dump
They even created a channel called #count-up-to-10000 which is exactly what it sounds like. An easy way to encourage engagement while being a little silly. Plus, they tease prizes throughout for certain numbers which makes fans want to keep playing along in the hopes of not only winning, but being a part of something. It’s a pretty clever way to use the platform!
One more major before we wrap up this list Since launching, Avenged Sevenfold has always promised that band members would be in and out engaging with fans in their channels—this is a huge incentive for fans to join, and for indies to learn from. No matter how big or small you are, talking to your fans and making them seen feel seen is important.
Another thing that makes the Server so awesome is regular giveaways including tickets and meet and greets, and places to trade merch and, as we’ve seen with all of these, truly feel a part of the community
When I think of Discord, Harry Styles and the launch of Harry’s House are often the first things to come to mind. Discord was an integral part of the Harry’s House rollout, and while the entire album rollout was brilliant, Discord was a huge part of that.
With each new hint Harry’s team gave about the album, a new channel would pop up. We saw things like “vase” “door” and “lamp” get slowly revealed as clues. The channels served as a place to discuss what fans thought it meant, and it became a non stop frenzy of chatter.
Even the smallest bands can take lessons from this—you can use Discord to not only grow a fanbase but tease out a release and build anticipation.
Here’s what I learned putting together this list. There aren’t that many independent artists utilizing Discord for their own servers. There aren’t even that many label signed artists doing it. What this means is that if you have even a semblance of a community that’s engaged with you and eager to interact on your other platforms, you should consider getting on Discord ASAP because right now there’s not a lot of competition and it’s a perfect space to grow and nurture that community before it blows up.
Get in on the ground for while you can—it’s going to be huge for your music career.
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