By Cliff Dumas
CMA, ACM & CCMA Winning Broadcaster
Think of social media as an extension of your stage. It’s another way to reach and engage your audience and build your fan base.
The power of social media is undeniable, Twitter boasts 500 million users. Over three hundred hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute. Sixty-seven percent of adults worldwide now use social media. 1 of 8 couples married in the U.S. met on social media.
It took radio 38 years to hit 50 million users. It took television 13 years. The internet did it in 3, the iPod did it in 3, and Facebook hit over 200 million in less than a year! Because your fans, customers and clients are using social media daily, communicating and marketing on social platforms is no longer a luxury. It’s a necessity.
So, based on research here is a snapshot of how to give some horsepower to your social media posts:
The research says that shorter tweets 100-120 characters long with a clear call to action and up to two hashtags tend to perform better. Don’t forget an image or video! Tweet something other than you Starbucks order…Please! Ask yourself; How will my audience benefit from this? or What will my audience learn about me?
Ok, be honest, who hasn’t clicked on the video featuring “Puppies that can’t stay awake”? Video has proven to be the key to unlocking a larger reach on Facebook ever since it changed its algorithm. (Algorithm means nothing to me, I just know it works)
Pinterest is the platform with the highest number of active users and a major driver of traffic for brands.
Vertical images with little background and lots of red, perform better on Pinterest according to social media science. More than that, the description of the pin needs to be compelling, optimized for SEO with a clear call to action.
Instagram is a very visual platform which means that compelling images are necessary. According to Rockhouse Partners, captions that include hashtags, emojis and a location tag tend to have a higher engagement compared to others. Share some backstage photos, give your audience V.I.P. access.
I know, I know, another social site to master. Some brands have chosen not to invest in Google+, however, those that have, for example H&M, have experienced some amazing results in terms of engagement and reach.
Most of the time, Google+ posts are treated like a shorter version of a blog post. So longer posts with a compelling headline a link and of course and image perform better. Don’t forget the hashtags! (More on Hashtags in my next blog).
Content Is King
Your social media content is no different than the content you perform on stage. Your content needs to be relevant, have value and be consistency. Reveal something interesting about yourself, your music, your writing or performing experience. For the love of God, please post something other than your Starbucks coffee order! Pull the curtain back on OZ and give your audience some backstage access to your life.
A recent study from Cornell University, concluded that the perfect tweet mimics a news headline, adds information and ‘speaks’ the community’s language.
What is the perfect tweet length? Social Media scientist Dan Zarrella says it is 100-115 characters long.
Visual content has proven to be an extremely powerful social media marketing technique regardless of the platform. In a recent white paper, Twitter revealed a 313% increase in engagement for rich media posts and a 52% increase in retweets. What does this mean? More reach for your music if you use this technique.
The same research shows that more images are better than one, and short videos outperform tweets with images. More specifically, the researchers saw a 173% increase in engagement for posts with photo series over single photos and a 256% increase in engagement for posts with Vine videos over simple photos.
The bottom line? With Twitter’s introduction of native video and the rise of apps like Meerkat and Periscope, video is new communication currency unlocking a larger reach on Twitter.
Don’t have new music to share, do a great cover. Don’t have a great cover ready? Have fun, share something personal about your life your fans will enjoy. The more fans get to know you the more the will like you and the more they like the more loyal they become to you and your music.