INDUSTRY INFILTRATION: 12 Tips for Branding Yourself on Social Media


Pictured: Malcolm Gray (Social Media Manager), Green Lee (Social Media Coordinator)

As an artist, you can create some amazing music but it’s all for naught if you don’t attract the proper audience. This is especially true today with the importance of social media. There are artists that have mastered the internet and thrive solely off their online branding, while others struggle and fail despite their high quality of sound. For our second “Industry Infiltration” advice column, we’ve decided to tackle this issue and provide some suggestions on how to stay relevant on social media, while maintaining a voice that’s true to yourself. Here are 12 tips for branding yourself on social media by Ones to Watch’s very own dynamic social media duo.


Just don’t. You may think that it’s cool to flex with a ton of followers but truthfully, you lose credibility when you have 50,000 followers and less than 100 likes/favorites on each post/tweet. Oh, and we can tell when you’re buying “likes” too so don’t bother doing that either. Instead, focus on creating an organic network of followers through proper engagement and consistency. That may sound pretty vague but read on, we got you.

2. Be authentic, have your own voice.

It’s easy to lose yourself while trying to keep up with the top trending social media pages, but there is no right or wrong way to use your platform. Well – there actually is a wrong way, but sharing your thoughts based on how you see the world is human, and people connect with that. It’s OKAY to have your own opinion. Just don’t be an asshole about it.

3. Engage with comments on your page.

When a person takes the time to comment on your post, it’s usually a sign that they appreciate your content. In such cases, a simple “thank you” or a short phrase of acknowledgment can go a long way. At least throw up some prayer hand emojis. You can also respond with a question to keep the conversation going. One loyal follower that constantly engages with your content is worth more than 100 followers that skim past your page.

4. Post frequently, but appropriately - quality over quantity.

With the countless users and accounts on social media platforms, stay consistent and relevant without what we call “sh*t-posting.” Plan your day ahead with a social media calendar to ensure that your posts are timely & spaced out properly. With the amount of content we’re pushing at Ones To Watch, we’d be a mess without our trusty calendar. Also, be diverse in your content. Share photos and video clips of things that have inspired you or something beautiful you’ve seen. Selfies are cool but people also enjoy finding out about new things about you.

5. Your network is your net worth.

We often invest our money but it’s crucial to also invest time in your relationships. Don’t just wait for the followers to come to you. Expand your network by reaching out and stepping out of your comfort zone. You never know where the right person can lead you. Feel free to share other artist’s music that you enjoy. Follow and engage with producers, managers, artists, managers, etc. to learn more about the industry.

6. Take advantage of live streaming.

Live streaming is a feature that people don’t seem to take advantage of on Instagram. Going live notifies your followers that you’re streaming + places you at the very front of the IG story listings. It’s also a really intimate way to engage with your followers. Use it to preview new music, show BTS in the studio, do an impromptu Q&A, etc.

7. Collaborate with brands.

Collaborations are a great opportunity to extend your reach into an audience that may be completely unfamiliar with you or your brand. You may have something another brand needs and vice versa. Find a brand that fits your vision, style, and reach out to barter some potential opportunities.

8. Experiment with new features.

There are new apps and programs releasing every day and the digital space can change drastically overnight. It’s important to stay on your toes and experiment with new features to enhance your social content.

9. Live an authentic life outside of the internet.

You can spend hours browsing your social media feed but that won’t always translate into quality content. Don’t go to a show to stand still with your phone up the entire time. Network and meet different people, grab a drink, dance! You can drop the phone every now and then. We can’t tell you how disappointing it is to finally meet someone with a hilarious social media platform in person just to be disappointed by their social awkwardness.

10. HUMOR!

Don’t be so uptight! A good sense of humor can go a long way. Don’t be afraid to crack a joke or two. There’s a reason why comedic meme users like Daquan and The Fat Jewish have millions of followers on Instagram.

11. Know your audience.

Take the time to analyze your social media statistics and understand which posts perform best and resonate with your audience.

12. Don’t fixate yourself on the nitty gritty.

Some people live and die by their Instagram aesthetics, but don’t let it stop you from sharing your story. Not every post has to be a perfect headshot with a vintage filter.