This is a big one and one that a lot of bands hassle me about constantly. Many bands out there seem to think that they can just connect their Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts and call it a day, updating them all at once like they are some sort of robot god. This is assuredly not the case, in fact posting the same content to all three, or even two of the platforms is actively hurting you. It deprioritizes you in every feed and suggests to your fans that you don’t even understand how your social media system is supposed to work. Thus making life more difficult for everyone in your band. Of course the reason for this is that so many people don’t understand how to split their content up.
Facebook is supposed to be for more long form content. It’s supposed to be where you drop big announcements and where you hint at what is coming up for your bands. It’s where you go in order to help share the bulk of your larger content because it’s based around longer form interactions. It’s also a very easy place to be able to interact with other people. Facebook is key because it allows you to have sort of a home base and a hub. It has better bio features than either Twitter or Instagram and can hold so much more info. You can use this as sort of an archive for your bands history, whilst simultaneously managing to keep some content reserved for both Instagram and Twitter. There is some crossover potential with Instagram, especially since many of the best Facebook posts have a picture appended. However even if you post the same thing to Instagram I’d encourage you to add hashtags and all of that good stuff to prioritize it in the feed. Something to emphasize here is the Facebook Live feature which we will talk about later – you NEED it if you want to directly engage with fans, we will talk more about this in the “Facebook Best Practices” section.
Instagram of course is all about photos. It obviously shares a lot in common with Facebook but it’s also a much more ephemeral platform. It doesn’t have as much information posted on it usually since you can only post from mobile devices which dramatically limits the type of content you can put out there and the amount of content unless you want to take deeper measures. This is a key in making sure that you understand the platform. That being said, it’s excellent for posting behind the scenes stuff BECAUSE it’s so ephemeral. I also prefer to use it for more day to day updates (Stuff shipping now!; Check us out at rehearsal! That sort of stuff) rather than Facebook because Facebook is so oversaturated with silly little bits of content like that anyway. Having a good hashtag game will give you a tangible boost too, so make sure to focus on that too. Like Facebook there is also the live function – this is super useful for people trying to directly engage Instagram followers – use it.
Then you’ve got Twitter, the redheaded stepchild. It stands pretty far outside of the worlds of Instagram and Facebook because the way it operates is distinctly different. Where Facebook and Instagram are more about creating content, Twitter is about joining the conversation, sharing relevant content and becoming a part of something greater. This can be extremely tricky since these are things you can’t really schedule. Corporate Twitter accounts that don’t have people handling them full time often run into difficulty because so much of Twitter is based on interactions and being familiar with the zeitgeist. That being said – it’s still a great place to post announcements, silly thoughts and all that other good stuff as long as you can use hashtags to make sure that people know what’s happening and feel that they are being kept in the loop. While there is no live function here I would strongly encourage you to live tweet things and use hashtags to keep the marketing consistent.
To circle back – there are types of content that can work across all three of these platforms but when it comes down to it the thing that is going to really make people connect with you the hardest is also one of the hardest things to do – and that is direct interaction with people commenting. I know that can be tricky especially when no one is commenting, but also when too many people are commenting. You are trying to maintain a clear voice for four, five, six or even more people but also be able to interact with people on an individual basis. that’s not exactly something that you can write a corporate handbook for. That is, however, something that you can sit down and try and learn. If you observe other successful social media accounts then you are going to start seeing how those people are able to cultivate relationships and go from there in order to have something both sustainable and memorable.
In short – there are key crossover points between all of these social media platforms and clear reasons that they all need to be separated and demarcated. When it comes down to it the user bases of people who use Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are all slightly different so if you don’t respect that then of course you’re going to have a hard time developing within them. So try and cater your content specifically to these people and take note of the best practices outlined in the following chapters. They just might give you the leg up that you need.