A Watched Pot Never Boils

Proverbappella

Proverb: A watched pot never boils.

It’s hard to wait for big things to happen.

Particularly in this age of social media, many a cappella groups find themselves driven by statistics, whether it’s album sales, Facebook likes, Twitter followers, or YouTube views. Groups are well-advised to monitor their numbers—but not at the expense of driving themselves or the rest of their group crazy and certainly not at the expense of doing more productive things.

To take a popular example, it’s fine to set a goal of amassing 1,000 Facebook likes (this number might seem modest to some, but depending on your school or market, it can be a number to strive toward). Building a Facebook audience is important—it allows your group to keep in touch with its fans, to spread media and news quickly, and to further develop your fanbase as the people who like share your statuses, photos, and videos with their friends and indirectly recruit new fans to your cause.

But staring at your Facebook page and clicking reload every five minutes does nothing to help your group. You’re setting yourself up for likely disappointment as likes don’t roll in as quickly as you would like, and are probably putting too much emphasis on an artificial measure of popularity. Focus on the quality of your product and the quality of your connections with your listeners, rather than the sheer quantity of people who visit your page. Redirect your energy to practicing your music or arranging something new. Tend to your a cappella group itself, take reasonable measures to promote your work, and the fans will follow. Take your eye off the pot, and before you know it, you’ll achieve a nice, steady rolling boil.