Singer and influencer Tayler Holder knows how to build a fanbase
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One of the most difficult tasks as an independent musician is to build a real organic fan base. The use of AI and other software often skews a musician’s audience numbers.
Some of the most crucial groundwork for any artist begins in the early stages of their career. A musician needs to sell tickets to their shows, and to do that, they need to have a strong online presence. Without it, it is almost impossible to gain traction, especially in today’s ever-changing cultural environment.
While record labels still hold the majority of market share, social media platforms like TikTok, Instagram and YouTube have leveled the playing field for independent artists.
Twenty-four-year-old influencer and singer Taylor Holder has mastered the art of nurturing its own loyal fanbase, capturing the hearts and ears of millions of users around the world.
Related: How This 18-Year-Old TikTok Star Built A Business With 5 Million Followers
Holder began his journey years earlier on the Musical.ly app – TikTok’s predecessor – only managing to generate several thousand views per video despite building a solid overall following. Holder’s reputation has grown significantly since then, now boasting over 20 million followers on his personal TikTok food. However, Holder’s talents go far beyond making viral videos.
Besides being a “sports junkie” in his youth, Holder has had a passion for music for as long as he can remember. Inspired by watching the trajectory of other great artists like Justin Bieber, Holder knew he wanted to pursue a career in music but had limited access to resources at first. Growing up in a small town in Texas called Alvarado, with a population of less than 5,000, didn’t help her situation.
Making the transition from being a “TikToker” to being relevant in the music industry hasn’t been easy. Initially, Holder was just pulling out the covers to feel his audience. He then worked on his sound as an original artist for over a year before releasing anything for his fans, debuting on all major streaming platforms earlier this year with the singles “100 rounds” and “I’ll be fine.” The former alone amassed over 10 million streams across all platforms in the months following its release.
I recently sat down and chatted with Holder, who was kind enough to offer some gems from his own personal experiences that may provide the rest of us with practical points for developing a following as an independent musician, or entrepreneur of any kind, in an oversaturated environment. industry.
Tip #1: Bring something unique to the table
“You follow trends that everyone does to go viral, but ultimately people want to see something unique,” Holder says. “If you watch someone do the same thing as everyone else, it gets boring, but if you can be unique and maintain a cult following, that’s where you start winning. You get those die-hard fans. Be the real one is important to you.
Holder does this by keeping his music authentic in his own life. “I’m going through breakups; life has really punched me in the nose lately,” he shares. “I want my fans to feel that. I want to release the type of music where people are screaming with the windows down, crying whenever they feel lost. Something they can relate to on a deeper level.”
Tip #2: Keep your fans engaged with new content
“If you post a new YouTube video every Monday at 2 p.m., you can get that fan base,” Holder recommends. “They will all come back Monday at 2 p.m.”
Holder does a particularly good job of teasing his releases to build hype before a drop. “Getting fan interaction is the main thing,” he explains. “I’ll be like, ‘If this video gets 20,000 comments, I’ll drop this song. It was just me singing live, and I was like, ‘Do you want that?’ If you can put everyone on their toes and get them to grab it as soon as it’s out, that’s the hardest thing. A lot of people have followers, not fans. There is a difference between the two. »
To put it another way, if no one knows about your release, then no one will support it once it is released.
Tip #3: Use all possible platforms
“TikTok is very important not only for musicians, but for anyone trying to get public attention,” Holder acknowledges. “Honestly, it changed the world. It’s a music-based platform, and labels contact us to promote their artists. Already having this platform pushing people’s music is a win-win.
But TikTok isn’t the only platform helping influencers flourish in their careers. “If you can create a cult following on YouTube, you’re a winner,” he adds, citing the likes of KSI, Nelk Boys and David Dobrik. He also recommends streaming your tracks to Spotify and Apple Music.
Tip #4: Don’t be afraid to fail
“The best thing you can do is take every step you can to understand your audience,” Holder advises. “The most I’ve learned in this industry is to fall and hit rock bottom. Don’t be afraid to try everything. You’re going to fail 1,000 times before you succeed once. Don’t look at the numbers; if you look at the numbers, you’re going to fail.If that’s all you care about, you’re not doing it for the right reasons.
Related: There’s a $2 billion market for independent music labels. Here’s how two industry veterans are making their mark.
Next, Holder plans to release a new single titled “Never Was You”, naturally having already teased on TikTok, creating hype for his downfall. He also hinted at releasing a country song, but mostly plans to stick with the stripped-down ballad sound he’s been mastering for a while.
As Holder proves, and is applicable regardless of your business, taking the time to publish content on all possible platforms is worth it. And you don’t have to be Tayler Holder to develop a real following; you can start wherever you are.