Just had this thought so I figured I’d blast it out there. In terms of social media and branding I think bands specifically have been waaaaay ahead of the curve (especially in terms of ad agencies, etc) in terms of utilizing social media and new technologies to build their brand.
For example, they were some of the first ‘entities’ to really leverage the social media platforms not only to build their own mini communities online but also to interact with their fans (their customers). Exclusive shows, giveaways, and personal interaction online has given so many groups a lot of loyalty. More importantly, because that interaction is online and easily accessible, its highly scalable.
They have been interacting with ‘fans’ and not customers. Literally. BUT the fans are also customers, and more businesses should start thinking in terms of their customers as ‘fans’. It’ll go a lot farther to building your business and your brand.