In the first part of this playbook we zoomed out and looked at the Lens mission and ecosystem map.
Missed it? Go back to it here.
Now it’s time to dive into some real artist strategies and how you can use Lens to grow your music community. Here’s a quick breakdown of what we’ll cover:
- Build hype for a release with collectible teasers
- Give your followers rewards and discounts
- Paid drops on Lens
- Share splits with collaborators
- Turn fans into a street team with referral fees
- Release a collectible music video
- Make exclusive content for social followers
- Host a live stream or drop party (and make money)
- Integrate Lens into your own website
- Reward your fans
- Tell your story through a blog or social content
- Identify your biggest fans
- Make a playlist
1. Build hype for a release with free ‘snippets’
Our simplest strategy at Ziggy Ziggy is dropping free music snippets for our Lens community to build hype for a music release.
For example, we upload a 30-second snippet of a song via Riff — often before the track is available to listen to anywhere else — which automatically populates across our social feeds on Lenster and Orb.
We encourage people to collect the snippet for free which drives attention and virality around the song ahead of our paid drops and Web2 releases.
This snippet from one of our artists Beachcrimes generated 836 collects on Lens. The main drop on Sound.xyz later sold out, before the track dropped on Spotify and other streaming services.
In other words, Lens works together as a key promotional tool alongside other Web3 and Web2 platforms.
2. Give your followers rewards and discounts on other platforms
In web2, it would be impossible to give your Instagram followers automatic discounts or rewards.
But it’s very easy on Lens!
For example, you can give all your followers pre-sale access to your next drop outside of Lens. This is the power of portable social capital — where you can take your followers with you across Web3 to boost your strategy.
Singer songwriter Sozi did this better than anyone. In April she posted a free snippet of her track Skyline on Lens and promised her first 800 followers pre-sale access to the paid drop on Zora.
It captured 3,000 likes and 1,802 collects across Lens, creating a huge wave of hype for her Zora drop which later sold out. As a bonus, she also generated 4,000 followers on Lens during the campaign.
3. Paid drops on Lens
You can also sell your music directly through Lens.
This sounds simple but it’s a huge unlock. Imagine being able to post your music on Instagram and let fans pay for it … right in the feed.
The best example here is RAC who debuted on Lens with an early demo from 2015. He sold it for 1 matic (approximately $0.63), generating almost $2,000.
Valentina Cy is another artist who has been consistently monetizing her music through Lens, selling several tracks between 1 matic ($0.63) - 15 matic ($9).
💡 Tip! How to make paid drops on Lens?
You can make all your music, photos, videos and posts collectible across Lens. This is the ‘collect module’ where you can choose all your settings.
- Choose whether it’s free to collect or paid.
- Limited edition? You can make it exclusive and scarce with a limited edition (e.g. 25 editions), or an unlimited edition could help you reach more people.
- How long is it collectible for? A day, a week, a month, forever?
- Who can collect it? Is it exclusive to your followers or can anyone collect?
💡 Tip! Should you do a paid drop or free drop?
It depends on your strategy. A free collect has the power to trigger a viral response and help your music reach a new audience. A paid collect is a good way to monetize directly once you’ve built up a community.
4. Share splits instantly with collaborators
The lightbulb moment of blockchain for many artists is the promise of instant payments (instead of waiting for months for royalties to come in). With Lens you can instantly split revenue with your collaborators or even share a cut with curators, like Ziggy Ziggy, if they help promote your work. Just enter the split percentage and wallets on the collect module.
5. Turn your fans into a street team!
One of the best features on Lens is the referral fee. This means fans will get a cut of sales if they share your paid drops with their followers.
The referral fee is built into the ‘mirror’ function (equivalent to a retweet or share). In the previous example above, RAC offered a 25% referral fee to anyone who shared his track, resulting in 4,500 mirrors.
Now your fans and community are incentivized to share your music.
💡Tip! How to set a referral fee?
Back in the collect module, you can turn on ‘mirror referral rewards’ and choose what fee to set.
By the way, all these settings are saved at the Lens Protocol level. When you choose your collect settings (paid, free, limited edition, etc.) this is saved at the Lens Protocol level. That means it automatically applies on all apps across the ecosystem whether it’s Lenster, Lenstube, Orb, Riff or something else.
6. Release a collectible music video
I think video content is still overlooked in Web3 so there’s a huge opportunity to make an impact with music videos.
Lenstube — the native video platform — is also a great example of where interoperability really shines on Lens.
It’s tricky to explain how cool this is until you try it…
If you’ve built 500 followers on Lenster, you’ll also have 500 followers on Lenstube! And if your fans ‘like’ or ‘collect’ it from Lenstube, it will also show up on Lenster.
Latin artist Nena has some of the best music video content across Lenster like this video from a park in Paris. Again, you can make this a paid collect and monetise your content directly.
7. Make exclusive content for your followers or collectors
You can reward your fans by creating exclusive behind-the-scenes content or sneak peaks at new music.
When you post on Lens simply change the restriction settings to allow only followers or collectors to view the post.
💡 Tip: You could post a free music snippet on Riff, then give collectors exclusive access to behind-the-scenes video on Lenstube. This is the type of functionality that is literally not possible anywhere else.
8. Host a live stream (and make money) ahead of a drop
Hosting Twitter Spaces and live stream drop parties is a big part of Web3 music culture. If you do it natively on Hypeshot — a live streaming platform within the Lens ecosystem — you can also drop NFTs during the stream and track how many people go on to mint your paid drops elsewhere. You can also token-gate the live stream to your followers as a way to growth hack your community across Lens.
Hip hop artist X&ND made almost 1 ETH from live streaming on Hypeshot. About half of that came from NFT drops within the live stream itself, and half from directing people to his drops elsewhere such as Sound and Decent.
9. Integrate Lens into your own website
If you prefer to send fans to your own website for an NFT drop, you can set up a custom drop site with Bonfire (including your own domain name), and integrate some Lens features.
Starting simple you can populate your Lens social feed onto your Bonfire website, like music collective LNRZ.
Or you can go deeper by gating content exclusively to Lens followers. Check out how Latin artist Heybela gave Lens followers exclusive access to an unreleased song on her Bonfire site.
And if you want to take things to expert level…
10. Reward your followers
The coolest Lens integration I’ve seen on Bonfire comes from DJ and producer Blond:ish. If you land on her Bonfire website, you are prompted to follow her on Lens, collect her genesis post, and you’ll be rewarded with free $ISH tokens — her social token.
It’s a powerful example of ‘programmable social’ where you can truly reward your most engaged fans and community members.
11. Tell your story through a blog or social content
T2 will feel very similar to Medium (or Mirror for crypto natives), but like everything on Lens it’s composable and interoperable. When you publish a blog on T2 it will show up on your Lenster timeline and reach your existing audience.
12. Identify your biggest fans
In Web2 it’s very difficult to identify your biggest fans and supporters but it’s much easier in Web3. The Orb app includes a revenue feature so you can see your biggest collectors instantly. Orb will also generate a template that showcases your top supporters. If you’re looking for more granular details, check out Bello — a standalone platform that analyses all the data about your collectors on Lens and other platforms.
13. Make a playlist
Web3 thrives on artists supporting each other so try making a playlist featuring all the music you love on Lens.
Make a playlist, share it on Lenster and tag all the artists you included. This would be a great way to put your music on the map and connect with artists in the space.
We use Spinamp to host three different playlists (Ziggy Ziggy Daily which is updated with the freshest drops every day, and Ziggy Ziggy Breakouts featuring the artists we think have the potential to break into something bigger).
Thanks for reading!
I hope you found this useful The Lens ecosystem is constantly evolving and we'll be back to update this playbook in future months.
Have you used Lens apps as part of your strategy? Drop your biggest wins or breakthroughs in the comments below!