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Hollis Brown


So many FanBridgers have been out on the road this summer, but Hollis Brown has really made a splash.  They’ve been out on tour supporting Counting Crows, meeting new fans, and still somehow keeping up with all of their marketing efforts in the process!  Hollis Brown is proof that a tweet like this:


  Can produce tweets like this:


We thought we’d ask HB about their summer experiences in a little Q&A!  Careful, you might just learn something from a hard-working band like them!


FB: Congratulations on this tour opening for Counting Crows and Citizen Cope; what an incredible experience! What have you learned from spending time with these other artists?


HB: This whole tour has been a really huge learning experience for us so far. From little things like seeing how the band carries themselves and handles the crew, etc., we have been learning how to connect to an audience with such a big stage as well. On smaller stages, people are right on you in a club, so you can really look right at them. On these big stages there are people wayyyyy out there and all over, and you have to work the stage very differently.


FB: As an opening act on a tour, it’s a great way to find new audiences and fans that haven’t heard of you before. What have you learned about how to connect with an audience that isn’t familiar with you?


HB: I think that getting out there and just walking around and hanging after you play is big. People want to come up and talk to you and ask questions and get to know the band. I also think telling them from the stage about the band and the songs and getting as much info to them as you can in a short span of time is important


Read Also: 6 Ways to Connect With Your Audience at Events 


FB: You guys have added a lot of new subscribers to your mailing list this summer! What have been some of the best ways you’ve found to get fans to join?


HB: We have been trying to build our mailing list. That has become a big priority for us because it is our network where we can directly talk to our core audience. Anyone who buys a record or a piece of merch we ask to sign. We have been trying to come up with new ways to get people to sign up, like a free song, or a personal message.


Read Also: Download our free PDF guide on FanBridge Free Giveaways


FB: I loved how you featured a fan in your most recent newsletter! What made you decide to do that?


HB: It was just a really cool and moving thing for us that we thought everyone should be able to connect with. Music is about connection, and that experience was the reason we are out on the road. We thought we would share it because it was cool for us.


Hollis Brown Counting Crows


FB: Congrats is also in order for your recent record release! What were some of the key elements of promoting “3 Shots” when it was released in May?


HB: Man, this record has certainly been a journey for us. It has been the hardest thing we had to do as artists. Raising the capitol ourselves, writing and recording until we were happy, getting a label, management, PR, booking radio all together for the push at the same time. It really has to be all systems go at the same time for it to work. We are also on the road non-stop promoting it. We are opening for the Counting Crows and Citizen Cope across the entire U.S, and then we jump to Europe and headline there. Working hard.


Hollis Brown 3 Shots


FB: You used crowdfunding platform PledgeMusic to fund this project; how did that change the way the album was made in comparison to previous records?


HB: Well it was a giant pain in the ass, for one. It was a lot harder logistically. Secondly, and positively it gave us a chance to make the album that we wanted to make, the way we wanted to make it. There was no labels or industry with an agenda.  It was liberating, and we got to make the art we wanted, which was great.


FB: Did running your PledgeMusic campaign change your relationship with your fans? If yes, how so?


HB: I’m not sure. I think it brought some people into the experience a little more. We try and be very hands on and direct with our fans all the time so I don’t know if I have the answer for that, we do all our own social media, and really like meeting as many people as we can on tour.


FB: How has FanBridge helped you stay connected with your fans?


HB: FanBridge has been a great connector for us. It is a simple and efficient way to get what you want to say to people who want to hear it.


FB: Can you share some of your favorite fan experiences over the course of your career?


HB: Oh man, that’s tough.  I just had a really awesome one in St. Augustine where a girl made a giant painting of me with my D’Angelico Guitar. I always wanted a painting of me performing and finally it happened. She is shipping it to me today which will go right in my living room.


Sign up for Hollis Brown’s Mailing List


Catch them on tour this fall


Purchase “3 Shots”

Team FanBridge

FanBridge &Episodic_Content

If you produce episodic content, then FanBridge is a great resource to help build an audience that is eager to tune-in regularly.  What do we mean when we say “episodic content”? We’re referring to the type of content that contains or is part of a series that is published in segments. This can include a web series, podcast, or even a series of blog posts.

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There are many ways to collect fan information through FanBridge while promoting your content.  To start, be sure you have mailing list signup links on your content profiles. For podcasts, that could be your SoundCloud profile, and for web shows, that could be on your YouTube or Vimeo page. Also be sure to include calls to signup in the descriptions and summaries of your content. Use some enticing language to sell your newsletter next to the Fan Action Page URL. And for even more call outs, you can actually use your own words to tell your listeners or viewers where they can go for more exclusive content. If you are a video series, put your call out in the end card or outro. If you are an audio podcast, include it in your sign off.


As you grow your list of subscribers, your readers will be primed to engage as regularly with your newsletter as they do with your content.  There are plenty of easy ways to keep those readers interested as you continue to send out regular newsletters.


Use the Template Tool to assemble a newsletter that promotes your newest episode as a featured item while keeping new fans up-to-date with episodes they might have missed. Do you often feature guests or collaborators? Give them a shout out!

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And if your series is ad supported, improve that referral traffic with banner ads in your newsletter. This way, you are sending your affinity audience directly to your sponsor location. Have a direct referral URL? Use it to make sure you get the credit for sending your fans their way. Plus, use campaign analytics to see how your sponsored posts are performing. Going the extra mile for your sponsors is the kind of engagement that sees returns and makes bank *cha-ching*

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Outside of email newsletters, go one-on-one with your viewers or listeners with Fan Questions. Questions queue privately and are easy to search and sort all in one central location, so if you solicit viewer/listener questions, you don’t have to worry about the mess of out-of-control Facebook comments or maybe a shared Twitter hashtag. Best of all, more than 70% of people who submit a question also subscribe to the mailing list, further booster the collection part of your marketing efforts.

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Check out the video below to see how you can intertwine your episodic content with FanBridge:

Team FanBridge



Creating and sending an email campaign isn’t an easy, one-step process.  There are a lot of little details that can be easily overlooked, and one little mistake could ruin your campaign effort!  Here’s a checklist (with more detailed explanations below) to make sure you don’t forget those minor details.  They make a big difference!




Make sure you have one main call to action for your subscribers to take



Make sure you have a good reason for sending your newsletter.  Ask yourself what action you would really like your subscribers to take after reading your email, and write your message to reflect that.  A great idea is to use a call to action button to draw attention to wherever you would like the reader to go.


Send a test email



Make sure your emails looks and reads exactly the way you want.  The best way to do this is to send a test email.  Check the design and re-read your message.  Also, check out how your email looks on a mobile device.  Use the template tool to make the email automatically mobile-optimized.


Check that all of your links go to the right place



It’s really easy to copy and paste the wrong link!  Make sure you click through to each link in your email to be sure it goes exactly where you intended.


Edit your plain text backup to match your newsletter



Double-check your plain text email, and edit it as needed.  This plain text email won’t go to the majority of your subscribers, but there will be a few that will have disabled html for their security.


Fill in a subject line that matches your content



Make sure you fill in a subject line before you send!  Nothing hurts your campaign more than forgetting this crucial step.  Set up an A/B subject line test for even better results and insights.


Select the right sender email address



You can always add a new sender address in case you signed up with an email address that you don’t want to send from.  Once you verify the email address as a sender, it will appear as an option in the drop down menu.


Schedule and target your newsletter



Putting some thought into who will receive your newsletter and when they should get it can improve not only your initial messaging, but also the campaign results and engagement from your audience.


Announce your campaign on social networks



This is a quick way to grab a few more email addresses even after you send a campaign, plus you can keep your social followers in the loop as well!


Check the CAN-SPAM box


Just verify that you’re sending a legal email campaign to subscribers that have opted in to your mailing list.  Please and thank you!


Create your next email campaign



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