Social media is now the most popular way for music fans to discover festivals according to a new study of the Australian live music market.

Some 41 per cent of event goers said they heard about the festival they attended through platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. That’s way clear of the 22 per cent who cited ‘word of mouth’ and 11 per cent through direct marketing from organisers.

The 2019 Australian Music Fans Report, compiled by Eventbrite, found that ‘superfans’ of music events — those who attend 10+ shows per year – are even more influenced by social media. Almost half (48%) of high frequency event attendees first learn about events on social media.

Of the more than 1,100 respondents to the survey more than half (55%) said they use social media to research an event or artist before making a purchase while 24 per cent watch music videos to see what an artist is like live.

74% of music-goers are actively looking for information about an event before they buy tickets. “While the most common information people are seeking out are the event date (82%), ticket price options (76%) and venue (70%) — many fans are looking to social media, video, or streaming to validate that they want to pay to see an artist,” Eventbrite said.

In advice to event organisers, Eventbrite said it’s important to reach out to fans in places where they hang out online. Livestreaming events is an increasingly useful tool to engage with music fans and reach out to new audiences.

“Our research shows that 42% of ticket buyers are streaming an artist’s music before purchasing tickets,” it said. “To capture the attention of these fans, you can create your own accounts on channels such as Spotify and YouTube to engage with fans and boost ticket sales.

“While only 24 per cent of fans said they are watching videos before choosing to purchase a ticket, this is a trend tipped to rise with the increasing popularity of channels like YouTube Live, IGTV and Facebook Live. Livestreaming events is a great way for potential attendees to view artists and see the kind of experience they’re getting at your venue or festival before purchasing.

“According to Livestream, concerts, and festivals are the second most-watched type of Live video out there and that 67 per cent of viewers are more likely to buy a ticket to an event after watching a livestream of the event or similar event.”