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While Twitter isn't as big as Facebook in terms of users, it has many advantages over Facebook that make it a powerful marketing channel for musicians. Not only does the real time feed make it easy for your tweets to be seen by your followers, but you can interact directly with other users on their page before they become your friends.

The following guide is set up to help you implement a successful strategy to effectively promote your music on Twitter by gaining followers and maximizing engagement.

Create a Good Looking Profile

If you're just starting out and not seeing a whole lot of success, take a close look at your profile. Many Twitter users will see your profile picture and banner image before they tap the follow button.

Here's what you should have.

A Custom Background Design

When someone comes across your Twitter page for the first time, you want to show them a great design that's reflective of your brand and music. If you aren't a Photoshop whiz, Canva offers a number of features that make it easy to touch up or create beautiful images.

Descriptive Bio

You have 160 characters to convert page viewers into followers, so make it convincing!

Clean, High Quality Profile Picture

No one is going to follow an egg, and if users are on Twitter, they don't care if you're on Facebook and Instagram as well. People want to see the follower behind the profile, so make your profile picture something of you or your band so Twitter users don't feel like they're following a bot.

Awesome Tweets

Before anyone decides that they're going to follow you, they're going to check out your tweets. If everything is promotional, it makes it hard to convince people to follow you. Don't just tweet your newest music video or a link to buy your merch - tweet things that are of value to your audience.

A Strong Password

Keep your password strong by using different types of characters. You don't want to get your Twitter account hacked like Fall Out Boy did. If your Twitter account does get hacked and you're still able to log in, change your password quickly and follow Twitter's guidelines for hacked accounts. If you're unable to log in, contact Twitter's support.

How to Get More Followers on Twitter

Once your account is set up properly and you have some tweets up, your next ongoing goal will be to gain followers. There are lots of ways to get general followers, but you want to get highly targeted followers who are likely to be interested in your music.

So, how do you find these followers?

The first thing you can do is find users who have a follow-back policy in place. You can do this by finding accounts that have a near 1:1 follower to following ratio.

One tool you can use to find these accounts is TwitterCounter. Just search for a keyword related to your niche to see users with their follower and following count, connect your Twitter account to TwitterCounter, and follow users directly from the search results.

twitter-follower-counter

You can also get followers by finding lists compiled by other users interested in your niche, and following others who are interested in those lists.

To find lists, simply go to a users profile, and click lists to see lists they've created.

twitter-find-lists

Once you find a list and click into it, you can see who's following it in the top right corner of the screen.

see-list-followers

Click the number under "subscribers" to see who's following the list, and follow them. If the list is related to your niche, it's likely that these users will follow you back.

While there are tools available to automate the process of following users on Twitter, these are likely to return low quality results.

Set Up Automated Messaging

Once you start following a large number of accounts, you'll see examples of good and bad messaging practices. The bad ones promote something right away, while the good ones lead into it through engagement.

Instead of blasting out your new music video, single, album, or a link to your email list, thank them for following you and ask them a question. Maybe see what they'd like to hear from you on Twitter, or find out what their current favorite song is. This can be a great way to gather valuable information about your audience.

Whatever you decide to send to your new followers, it's a good idea to automate the process. You can do this using SocialOomph or CrowdFire.

While you can also automate responses, I'd recommend responding to messages personally. Remember, people followed you to hear from YOU, not your bot. Engaging your followers directly will build loyalty, which can lead to increased levels of engagement to help increase the vitality of your music.

When to Tweet

Twitter traffic increases quite dramatically after 2pm, and in some cases, weekends have even more engagement.

best-time-to-send-a-tweet

Source: CoSchedule

While the above graphic provides a nice set of data, those times may not work the best for you. Test different days and times for your tweets to see which produce the most engagement from your followers.

On Twitter, posting the same content multiple times per day won't hurt. The estimated lifespan of a tweet is about 18 minutes.

You can semi-automate your Twitter marketing using tools like Hootsuite to schedule your posts throughout the day.

What to Tweet - Getting More Likes and Retweets

On Twitter, it's unlikely that your followers are going to retweet your promotional offers. They're much more likely to retweet something that engages them. Because of this, it's a good idea to follow the rule of thirds.

social-media-rule-of-thirds

One third of your tweets should be promotional, such as sharing links to your songs in streaming services, one third should provide value to your fans, and one third of your posts should engage fans in a way that builds a relationship.

Here are some ideas for how you can maximize engagement from your tweets.

People use Twitter for news updates and help. Because of this, links are one of the most retweeted types of content.

Share news stories or instructional articles that your followers may be interested in, and you'll see a bump in the number of retweets you get.

Retweetable Words

Here are the 20 least retweeted words:

  • game
  • going
  • haha
  • lol
  • but
  • watching
  • work
  • home
  • night
  • bed
  • well
  • sleep
  • gonna
  • hey
  • tomorrow
  • tired
  • some
  • back
  • bored
  • listening

These words describe boring, mundane activities.

By contrast, here are the most retweeted words:

  • you
  • twitter
  • please
  • retweet
  • post
  • blog
  • social
  • free
  • media
  • help
  • please retweet
  • great
  • social media
  • 10
  • follow
  • how to
  • top
  • blog post
  • check out
  • new blogpost

Notice that the most retweeted words have to do with content, or simply asking for a retweet. Not only that, but they're more engaging and less boring than the least retweeted words.

To increase the number of likes and retweets you get, consider using these words/phrases more often.

Leave Room for Retweets

Have you ever canceled a retweet because you haven't had room to add your own comment? I have.

I like to add short comments to my retweets, but if the original tweet has all 140 characters, the tweet needs to be edited.

People are naturally lazy. Keep your comments between 80-100 characters so your followers can leave their own input for their followers.

Hashtags

Using hashtags in your tweet can increase exposure, but don't make it look spammy. Use hashtags in keywords that make sense, and that might increase the exposure of your tweets to a relevant audience.

Discounts

When you're putting out promotional tweets, be sure to include discount offers for your music or merchandise. The number one reason people follow brands on social media (and yes, you are a brand) is for discounts.

Your Thoughts on Promoting Your Music on Twitter

Hopefully this guide will help you take advantage of Twitter as a way to promote your music. What other tips do you have for musicians to make use of Twitter for marketing purposes?


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