Above & Beyond’s “Group Therapy” Is An Invitation to Being Social

barryrooke    July 3, 2013


Late last year, the super trance trio of Above & Beyond announced their radio show Trance Around the World was coming to an end.   The result was panic across the digital world about why they would quit.  Were they breaking up?  Were they going to become dubstep producers? What would people do on Friday afternoon while they were suppose to be working and not dreaming of the weekend?   Well, none of the above was true, the group decided to play off their latest album and tour and change the name to “Group Therapy” and market the show a little differently in the new social landscape.

Community, connection, interaction – these things have always been central to everything Above & Beyond do and these things will lie at the heart of the new Group Therapy show.
-Above & Beyond Website

But what also became the heart of the change was its social media.  Launching Google+ Hangouts, a new twitter hashtag #ABGT and re-branding its website, Jonathan Grant, Tony McGuinness, and Paavo Siljamäki (Plus the entire marketing team behind them) created a massive movement to connect all their fans to each other and use it as a positive community of support and discussion.  This means more and more people using, posting and interacting on social media, which in turn means a much larger marketing network and opportunities.

Using google trends, lets take a look at Above & Beyonds overall success.   aandbgeneraltrend

You can see in late winter of 2011 that the group launched its new album and tour name Group Therapy


This followed by the use of the abgt #hashtag at the end of 2012 when it was introduced as part of the new radio show name. aandbgtonlytrend

As a result of the re-branding and launch, the group now can use its social media to market its events and crowd source.   The two tweets below encourage its fans and followers to not only become hyped about events, but show that if they join in, they can become a part of Above and Beyond.  Using their Twitter hashtags, Facebook wall and Google+ Hangout, listeners of the syndicated radio show can give shout outs to friends, thank the group for past experiences and make announcements which allows the show hosts to promote their own upcoming events, music releases and competitions through other people.


The group even used its social media pages to encourage those who attended the group therapy tour to submit footage of their experiences and converted them into a song that was released for free.

You can follow Above & Beyond via their Website, Facebook, https://twitter.com/aboveandbeyond, YouTube or Google+ Pages, along with the millions of other weekly fans of their radio show.

Lessons Learned:

  1. Moving your marketing platform to social media as the main outreach has the potential to work very well, especially if the product you are marketing is much more social in nature.
  2. Focus on a few social media platforms to utilize, and sometimes a strong presence on a growing platform will allow you to better target your marketing (see Cadbury’s Google+ campaign here).
  3. People love to hear their names and shout-outs on the radio.
  4. Individuals and other social products or services are moving to social media only platforms, with focus on traditional marketing outreach reducing (but still important as a way to reach non-social media users)
  5. The focus on these platforms must be around the people as individuals, a non-social individual is tough to sell (or someone who is too busy in general), and as a result, the agency may need to find ways to fill in that social gap on behalf of the product.
  6. At some point, an individual (like a musician) who is branding themselves WILL need support from others as social media has the potential to take away from the actual products progression.  A stale product wont become social, even if the individual who is marketing it is.
  7. Many more tips on Social Media Marketing for individuals can be found on-line, but here is a good slideshow as well.


Huffington Post
Google +
Google Trends
Above & Beyond’s Website
Slideshare – Social Media Marketing for Musicians

Submitted by: 
Barry Rooke – SMBP Student University of Waterloo.

To contact the author of this entry please email barry@infinitesm.com.

If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Program Director, Social Media for Business Performance.