[Editor’s Note: This article was written by Angela Mastrogiacomo.]
Happy (almost) Thanksgiving! It’s the season of delicious food, family packed ‘round the table, pies a-plenty, and lots and lots of plans being made for the new year.
But you know what else this time of year is great for? Showing your fans how much you care! Now truth be told, this is something you should be doing year-round, but I love the chance to take a holiday and make it into a fun way to bond with fans.
So, let’s get into it! Here are five ways to show your fans how much they mean to you this Thanksgiving season.
Send out random thank you notes
Who doesn’t love receiving snail mail that they actually want?!
This Thanksgiving, why not go the extra mile for your fans and send out thank you notes to let your most loyal fans know how much you appreciate them. This doesn’t have to be expensive either—sure, you can go above and beyond and have custom postcards of your band made that can be repurposed on Christmas and other special occasions, but you can also just handwrite a note and put it in an envelope, or use a stack of thank you cards from the dollar store, (I’m betting you can find some cute Thanksgiving ones!). This is a lot about sentiment more than anything else, and there’s a lot you can do with that.
Then, just put in a quick note about how much you appreciate their support, and if you can, something personal like a memory you have with them, or a show you know they came out to, or a story they’ve told you. I promise this one is going to make your fan’s holidays really special.
Release a new song
Any excuse to release a new song, right?! This can be something holiday-themed if that’s your thing, but more likely it can be a new song you’ve had in the vault for a little bit, or it could even be an acoustic version of one of your most popular songs, (bonus: have your fans vote on which one you cover).
Or, if you really want to make it a collaborative process and reach new fans, you could do a split EP or a cover of another emerging artist’s song to reach an even wider audience.
Host a ‘Fans-giving‘
How fun would it be to gather all your fans around for a fun and relaxed Fan-Giving?! This could be in person if you’re really ambitious or have a decent local fanbase, but you can just as easily host it online via Skype or Zoom or a private Facebook group.
If it’s in person, you can really go crazy with having people bring different dishes, to make it a pot-luck style event, but if it’s online it can just be a casual chat where everyone rocks out with their favorite drink, dessert, or coffee, and you all have a casual one-hour chat.
Either way, there should definitely be a performance after to really sweeten the deal and make it all the more memorable. You can play originals, holiday covers (surely there are Thanksgiving songs?) or take requests prior to the performance and cover fan favorites.
Create a band recipe
This is a fun way to spread the holiday joy without going too crazy. Get together with the rest of your band and create a one-of-a-kind recipe that fully represents the band, and then put together a recipe to share with your fans a few days before, and maybe even a video of you all cooking it that you can release on Thanksgiving. Encourage your fans to try the recipe themselves and share the results with a designated hashtag!
A twist on this is creating a blog post of everyone’s favorite Thanksgiving recipe and then a video series of everyone making that dish (pared down to about 5 minutes total). This is a cute way to show your personality and holiday spirit while inviting fans to do the same.
Run a giveaway
If you’re going to be thankful, you might as well give something away to show it, right?! Put together a few merch items (t-shirt, button, stickers, CD, etc) and create a contest where the winner gets the bundle (+ one of those handwritten thank-yous from above).
The contest can be whatever you want, but I’d suggest keeping it within the Thanksgiving theme. Have them share their favorite Thanksgiving food, recipe, memory, etc and then either pick your favorite or draw a winner randomly.
We’re just getting started! If you’re looking for even more tips on increasing fan engagement then join me for my free Masterclass ‘How to gain your next 1,000 fans. 3 simple steps that lead to higher engagement, sold-out shows, and life-changing opportunities’.