The Internet is a place of opportunity. Increasing your music streams and going viral has grown into a science rather than an art. For artists, musicians & content creators the Internet can be a place of experimentation, growth and learning.
As opportunities continue to develop around the content business. It’s important to understand why things works and why things don’t. Better yet, what type of content connects with your target audience and what content doesn’t.
What are the underlying factors behind music streaming and content that goes viral?
Understanding the psychology of the Internet is becoming a standard and can increase your odds of success as a content creator. A lot of content creators have gotten virality and creating conversations down to an art.
Jonah Berger, the author of “Contagious” has spoke about ‘How To Craft Contagious Content: A recipe, engineer content to make it more viral or talkable’ throughout the years.
He is actually the main catalyst and inspiration behind Nipsey Hussle’s decision to sell a $100 mixtape. The “CRENSHAW” release was inspired by a now famous story in Jonah Berger’s book about the $120 philly cheese steak.
Nipsey Hussle was able to take the same principles discussed in ‘Contagious’ and apply to his marketing campaign for “CRENSHAW”. One of Jonah Berger’s six STEPPS is “Triggers”. Helped Nipsey to understand the environment and reality of the music industry and was able to create conversations and scarcity around his mixtape “CRENSHAW”.
No one — ever before — in the history of man — has sold a mixtape for $100.
So this move obviously created conversations and publicity around Nipsey Hussle and the ‘All Money In’ movement.
This is just one example of what plays into the human nature of the Internet.
For content creators, you have to focus on the psychology and not the technology.
A couple of questions to ask yourself are:
- Who does this content speak to?
- Does this content speak to my target audience?
In a recent interview with Joe Budden, the Atlanta rapper 2 Chainz sat down with Budden for his ‘Pull Up — Interview Series’ which features some of Hip Hop’s most prominent figures. 2 Chainz was asked about his creative process and how he pieces together songs for music streaming.
I am firm believer in patterning yourself after success and 2 Chainz’ response is noteworthy on a number of levels. I believe that it’s something that every artist, musician and content creator should keep in mind when producing their art.
2 Chainz says that he produces songs based off of two dynamics.
- Replay Value
Check out the interview below, it is pre-placed at 23:15 for inspiration + free game.
Now lets deep dive into “3 Ways Artists Can Increase Music Streams & Go Viral”
1. Replay Value
Replay value can be accomplished through a number of factors. Going back to Jonah Berger, he discusses what makes content contagious and talkable. His ‘6 STEPPS are: Social Currency, Triggers, Emotion, Public, Practical Value and Stories’.
With social media, we live in a World where content lives and dies on the Internet. For content creators, you can increase your odds of being successful by placing your content in an environment that is built for it to succeed.
In music streaming we most notably see artists and musicians utilizing triggers, emotion, stories and practical value. This goes back to the question I asked before, ‘Who does your content speak to?’
A great example of environmental triggers is Rebecca Black’s viral song ‘Friday’. This song went viral because of its trigger effect.
Check out the video below.
Everything from the video to the lyrics speak on emotion, social currency, triggers, public and stories.
Anyone who has worked in the entertainment or nightlife industry understands that Mondays are for sleeping in and Tuesdays usually include a night out with friends.
A perfect example of how going viral is based around human nature and psychology.
Share-Ability is a great dynamic to keep in mind when producing content. A great analogy of share-ability is the idea jokes and now in the Internet era; Memes.
A great joke no matter who tells it, will be funny. The same psychological effect applies to Memes. No matter who created the meme; people will still share it.
Share-Ability plays into the Social Currency aspect of Jonah Berger’s 6 STEPPS framework.
For artists, musicians and content creators this can be achieved through quotes, popular interests and using Trojan Horses. A Trojan Horse is a piece of content that holds Social Currency, Practical Value and Stories. For example, Corona Beer & Beaches.
Check out the video below.
The Panda Cheese commercials speak to the psychology of viral content. 100 years from now these commercials will still be funny and Panda Cheese will still be relevant because of the “Trojan Horse” effect engrained in the marketing campaign.
Your aim should not only be to produce viral content and increase music streams. You want to produce content that will float on the Internet and remain a source of inspiration, value and a common interests for years to come.
I deep dive into the aspect of “Creating Content That Floats” below.
3. Invite Fans On Your Journey
Inviting fans on your journey is the best way to build a fan base, increase music streams and go viral. When you have fans that are willing to support your content that provides a psychological effect for other people to join in as well.
The Internet is a continuous place of opportunity, growth, discovery and connection. As a content creator, once you look at the Internet in its simplest terms you will be able to form connections, build your fan base and reach people who will follow you on your journey.
Nipsey Hussle is a great example of a journeyman of music. The Los Angeles rapper invited fans to follow him along every step of his journey and provided those who listened to his message with inspiration, motivation and continuous value.
Check out the article below, as I detailed a decade long run in Hip Hop that ended in 2019.
MARATHON MAN: The Prolific Run of Nipsey Hussle
The 10-Year Evolution Of Ermias Joseph Asghedom
As Jonah Berger would say,
“Focus on the message, not the messenger.”