An Idiot Proof Way to Find Your Band's Perfect Demographic | James Rawson - Guest Blog

I believe in the musictrepreneur: treating your music as a small business. And I know, you probably just cringed a little. Mixing business and music sounds so icky. But trust me it’s not. In fact, it will transform your music because sound business theories and practices are completely different than any other type of theories and practices.


They work.


Take the idea of demographics.

Now, see how to painlessly use demographics to discover your fanbase.

What the heck are demographics


According to, demographics are segmentations of people:


based on factors such as age, race, sex, economic status, level of education, income level and employment.”


Basically, finding your demographic is the big data verison of “getting to know” your clients, or in your case - as a musician - getting to know your fans. Demographics tell you where your fans live, what they believe in, what they like to buy, and who else they like to listen to.


Why should my band and I even care about demographics


Demographics matter because they tell you how to reach your fans.


So, you have a show in a city you’ve never played. How do you promote?


Well, for example, if you know your demographics, you’ll know that your fans love coffee shops, record stores, and comic shops. So, instead of wasting your precious gig posters on random street corners, you can place them exactly where your fan base will notice.


Demographics allow you to make smart, efficient, and effective marketing decisions. In musician terms, demographics allow you to actually get fans to your next show.


Ok, how do I find my perfect demographic


Now, the real trick to demographics is finding them. However, as a musician, this part is easy for you. Just find yourself.


What I mean is - use yourself as an example of your demographic. If you’re creating music that you love, then other people will like it too, and those other people will have more than just music in common with you. To find your demographic, stop thinking your a unique butterfly, and instead, realize that there are hundreds and hundreds of other people who like the same stuff you do (including your music).


DISCLAIMER: your demographic will NOT be your clone. Yes, your demographic will share your interests, but they may not share all of your interests. They possibly will live somewhere else, hold slightly different beliefs, and like stuff that you don’t. So, this technique of using yourself as an example of your demographic can only be taken so far. You have to hold a grain of salt when using this method.


However, seeing yourself as your demographic is a great starting point,


The Five Step Process to finding your demographic


So, how do you find your demographic?




  1. List your favorite bands

  2. List how you find out about new bands and upcoming concerts

  3. List what you believe in: politics, religion, love, etc.

  4. List your other favorite things to do besides listening to music

  5. List what social media you use and how you use it


Once you’ve filled out this list with the MOST detail possible, you’ll instantly know so much more about your fanbase, because you and your fanbase (if your music is staying true to yourself) will have a lot in common. By harnessing this new knowledge about your fanbase, you’ll be able to make intelligent decisions when promoting your next concert, album release, and even blog post.


Use this business tool of demographics to help you achieve your real goal, which is:

to get your music heard.


Think like a boss, so you can play like a boss.   


Posted on April 1, 2015 and filed under Blog, Independent Ear.