If you love music, you probably also love the music apps on your smartphone. There are certainly plenty of them out there, everything from Spotify and Beats Music that allow you to live stream all your favorite bands, to Rdio and Pandora that let you create custom radio stations, and the hundreds more that help you discover new artists.
But what about an app that would let you chat to say, Lil Wayne or Katy Perry? With a new application known as Fansino, you might be able to do just that — and all you have to do is listen to your favorite musicians. Fansino, currently in beta testing and available for both Android and iOS, not only allows fans to actually get in touch with their favorite bands, but also helps artists learn from, get to know (and even reward) their most zealous fans.
Frustrated by his own experience as a musician, Fansino creator and CEO Haran Wolfovitz Yaffe set out to create an app that simplified artists’ lives by connecting them directly with their fans. After living as a touring musician for several years, Yaffe says his biggest frustration was using multiple outlets to organize digital content.
"After using so many different tools to talk to and stay in touch with my fans, I just got lost and couldn’t keep up with it," says Yaffe. "I needed a way to cut through the ‘likes’ and ‘retweets’ and focus on what’s important. So, I created Fansino.”
Branded as a music networking app, Fansino is designed to connect artists with their biggest fans. The app works in the background of fans’ everyday online listening sessions, collecting data based on their listening habits. By listening to your favorite music on any major streaming network (including iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, Soundcloud, YouTube, etc.), you provide data to your favorite musicians.
The more you listen, the better that data it is. Fans can also "gain rank" among their favorite artists based on their listening habits and frequency, and can be offered access to exclusive fan groups depending on their level of interest.
Using this data, musicians are then able to track which fans are listening to their music, what they are listening to, and where they are listening from. From there, they can determine who their biggest fans are in any given city, and directly connect with them to offer rewards and prizes (think free concert tickets, VIP backstage passes to shows, and band merchandise). Fansino also boasts a built-in chat feature, allowing artists to reach out to their fans directly at any time.
Fansino's approach to connecting artists with their fans is drawing the attention of Intel, Amazon, and Google, who helped to judge the 8th Annual Mobile Premier Awards, the world’s largest mobile app showcase that took place in Barcelona, Spain, on March 2. This year, Fansino received the award for “Best App."
There's just one catch: Fansino needs your help.
The more people that sign-up to use the app, the better it will perform — and the sooner its creators will be able to release the full, edited version that will allow you to connect with musicians worldwide. All you need to do is download the free app, sign in through Facebook, and Fansino takes it from there.
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Right now, a number of artists from around the country are exploring the app's beta testing features. One of those artists is Rescue Kid, a South Florida rock band that formed in late 2012.
According to the group's guitarist Mike Gentile and bassist Chris Gentile — both former members of Wellington's Hey Monday — Fansino is the perfect application for their band's do-it-yourself approach to marketing and promoting.
"Being a relatively new band, Fansino is something we are extremely exited to utilize," said Chris. "Managing all our content ourselves, we'd be able to pinpoint exactly who's into our music. I think the coolest feature about Fansino is just being able to be in direct contact with the fans that want to know what's going on with us. It's an awesome idea, and has the potential to make our lives so much easier."
Nicole Danna is a food and music writer covering Broward and Palm Beach counties. Follow her @SoFloNicole.