Honors Program Theses


Open Access Honors Program Thesis

First Advisor

Matthew Bunker


Social media; Musicians--Social aspects; Popular music fans--Social aspects;


Social media is commonly considered a powerful tool for engaging customers and audiences, but that is only true if social media is done in a proper context. If social media is not executed in that context it may deliver sub-par value to fans, leading to lower financial returns. The purpose of this research is to find that context and determine how musical artists can best bridge the gap between themselves and their fans in the social media heavy 21st century. The goal is to find what expectations fans have for the artists they follow on social media and how the artists can meet these expectations to deliver value to their fans.

To discover these expectations I decided to engage in both primary and secondary research. The secondary research was done to explain what social media really is, if social media has any financial implications on artists and how social media success could be measured. Then, based off the secondary research, a survey was planned to explore what artists could be doing to engage their fan bases in a way that was favorable both in the metrics discovered and in turn, financially. This survey was executed to ask social media users what they expected out of the artists they followed on social media.

Year of Submission



Department of Marketing

University Honors Designation

A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation University Honors

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (53 pages)