Effective use of social media can launch you into whole new markets as an artist
As musicians we think of our first job of being consummate performers, working our craft until we are the best we can be. However, in this modern age of media, marketing and ADHD attention-spans, we also have to spend time making sure our name is out there, we're making new contacts, gaining new fans/audience, and in the forefront of other artists who might want to work with us. Twitter and Facebook are great mediums for this, as they allow you to connect with people without having to even be in the same city.
But are you effective in how you use Facebook and Twitter? Here are some simple suggestions you can easily put into daily practice that can dramatically change your reach as an artist.
- Follow those who follow you
Take a look at the list of followers you have. Are you following them? If not, why not? They may not be talking about subjects you're interested in, but if they're following you there is some connection. You never know when you might find a comment they make you will want to respond to and then, they are not only responding back, but re-tweeting more of what you say - which broadens your circle.
- Engage with People
Actually read what people are tweeting or posting on Facebook. Pick a half-dozen to comment on, and say something that actually adds to the conversation. It's particularly good if you can say something that gets them to comment back. Having them comment on what you've said raises your visibility on both Twitter and Facebook. This is what you want as an artist --visibility!
- Seach Out People
...in your field and out. If you're a flutist, search for other flute players, or flute makers, or people interested in the flute. But also search for clarinetists, composers, conductors, or other musicians that might also be of interest. There are thousands of interesting people on Twitter and Facebook. Connect with them because you never know when one of them might have an opportunity for you.
- Be friendly
This may sound obvious; it is social media after all. But you'd be surprised on how one negative comment can turn people off - and not just one, but any of their friends could suddenly stop following you. So, remember to be nice. Constructive criticism is great as long as it's constructive. Use the simple rule of 10 nice things for every critical comment. I'm not suggesting Twitter and Facebook need to be all fluffy, but as an artist you want to build relationships, not tear them down.
- Use Hashtags (Twitter only)
By adding a simple hashtag (words with # in front of them) you categorize your Tweet. This not only makes it easier for people to find tweets on the same topic, but if your constantly tweeting on a given topic and people search that hashtag, you'll come off looking like an expert --a good thing for an artists reputation!
None of these suggestions take much effort or time. They can dramatically increase how effective you are at getting noticed by other people. As an artist you need to have your name out there, getting used in conversations, thought of when projects are planned. Use Twitter and Facebook effectively and find whole new worlds of opportunities.