Twitter is, in my estimation, one of the most underrated tools in the world of social media. That’s because it’s a helluva lot more complicated than most of the other social media platforms out there and consequently fewer and fewer people use it. Yet the people who use Twitter correctly are some of the biggest stars out there. The people who understand its potential and properly move forward with it are also the people who are going to dominate the news feed. Our beloved president aside, look at how the EDM community has managed to grow itself via twitter. Simultaneously – consider the fact that Twitter subcommunities are some of the most influential and important out there – bands like Gatecreeper and Full Of Hell got a lot of their success out of being active on Twitter, as have labels like Tridroid. They understand that it’s a space to develop ideas and to be able to control the dialog, even if you are a smaller brand.
The main thing that people don’t understand is that Twitter in 2018 is based around two main concepts, conversations and quantities of posts. The biggest Twitter influencers literally tweet once every fifteen minutes. Sure a lot of those are scheduled, but that doesn’t change the fact that they are making sure that they are going out and controlling the dialog. There are so many tweets every second that if you’re not trying to conquer with volume then you aren’t going to get anywhere. Yes it’s important to have good content and all that, but with Twitter it’s just as much about being there as anything else. Creating the amount of content you need to be good at Twitter can be a struggle and I’m not going to lie – I can’t do that yet. I’m not necessarily trying too but I get the importance for people trying to grow their brands. The key in my eyes is just to establish a lot of pieces of micro content – be it quotes on cool backgrounds, polls or whatever – the sorts of things that you can set up in 100 of in an hour and spread throughout the week.
Tied into creating all of this content is getting into conversations with your Twitter community. Your Twitter community is the other users out there who are using this as a way to grow their brands and cross promote. People who are new to these communities would do well to interact with the influencers because the people who are active in their subgenres community routinely find themselves getting involved with higher ups who happen to also enjoy Twitter. This leads to people being able to access opportunities they might have never had before. It all just comes from being an active part of these worlds and realizing that the more you give the more you get. The best part is now it no longer matters if you live in bumfuck, Ohio, you’re still going to be able to interact with people, and even if you can’t meet up with them, making a phone call isn’t too tricky. At the end of the day, getting into Twitter conversations increases the amount of content you release, cross pollinates your brand and helps you make new friends. What’s not to love?
This is why EDM DJ’s use beef to their advantage all the time. They realize that if they fight not only will their fans be following along but also they will be able to cross pollinate. Furthermore, getting involved in beef will force fans to pick a side, and this will increase both dedication to the artist and the sense of a ‘cult’ around the music – something underground genres have used to boost profits organically for years. Beyond that – if your beef gets big enough you WILL get written about. It’s not unusual for bands under the same management roster to ‘suddenly’ have beef knowing that most people aren’t going to check behind the scenes. If it’s all about keeping your name in the press and increasing visibility then making a few enemies and owning up to it is going to be a good thing for your development as a brand and as an artist. I get that that can be annoying to some people – but that’s staying in the spotlight.
Then of course there’s the concept of trending. While Mark Zuckerberg certainly did steal this aspect of Twitter and improve upon it for Facebook to become even more of a juggernaut it’s still a notable part of how Twitter works. The key here is multifold. First of all, creating your own brand hashtag is essential, as is creating hashtags for specific events. I’ve written about this before and will probably go in depth with it in the future – but realize that if you’re not building brand hashtags then you are ruining your ability to get trending no matter how much you tweet. You need to try and get the sheer volume of tweets using your brand hashtag through the roof if you want to be able to dominate and help get your brand to where it needs to be. Bands don’t always take enough advantage of their online communities, but figuring out how to trend is a key.
At the end of the day I get that social media can be scary, alienating and probably has a negative impact on society. Twitter is an incredibly powerful tool and one that drives more and more headlines every day, more so than Facebook it seems even. If you’re not at least a little bit fascinated by the cult that people like Donald Trump have been able to cultivate using it and the weird false realities painted by leaders in every industry as well as the connections made via Twitter you need to reevaluate your online strategy. Sure it isn’t for everybody, but it’s also not going away anytime soon. In fact – Twitter may remain the headline generator of the future.