This guest post was written by Marcus Taylor, founder of TheMusiciansGuide.co.uk, a music promotion site offering resources to help musicians succeed in the music business.
After a few years of many musicians using Twitter only as a promotional tool, I’m glad to finally see musicians starting to use Twitter effectively — my Twitter feed this morning was full of musicians having conversations with their fans and sharing interesting, exclusive content. Phew!
However, there’s still room for improvement.
The thing is, we’ve still got a long way to go — I want to see bands setting up their Twitter accounts to optimize the amount of opportunities they receive — more gigs, more song sharing, more fans, more free gear, more free beer, more publicity of the band, etc. I’m confident when I say that I believe Twitter can get you more of pretty much whatever you want, if you set it up properly.
Remember, luck = preparation + opportunity. Twitter is full of opportunities, you just need to be better prepared in finding and dealing with those opportunities if you want to be “lucky” more often.
Here’s a few ideas…
Using Twitter to get more gigs
If I was asked to book a band a tour using Twitter alone, here’s what I’d do. First of all, I’d open Hootsuite or Tweetdeck or something and set up a “stream” containing searches for things like “looking for bands near:Melbourne” or “need a band near:Melbourne”, obviously changing Melbourne to whichever city you were looking for gigs in.
Secondly, I’d find and follow all of the local promoters who could offer gigs, and create a stream in Hootsuite of their tweets. I’d regularly tweet with them and share their content to get recognised by these people. When the time’s right and they’re familiar with who I am, I’d send a request to perform at their venue.
Thirdly, I’d find people tweeting about concerts coming up in my genre and follow them — if they’re going on about the V Festival 2012, and I write cheesy pop music, they may like my music. As most venues book the bands that provide a good balance of demand, quality, and low cost, it makes sense to focus on directly approaching the venues, and also getting fan demand for your music in a certain area, too. If you want more gigs, build more fans.
Finally, I’d follow hundreds of bands in the area and do the same as I did with the promoters — get to know the local artists and build relationships with them. The likelihood is that other bands will know promoters and venues who would be able to offer you gigs. Building connections with other bands is often easier than building them directly with promoters and it gives you a foot in the door.
Any more ideas? Leave them in the comments!