Toyah Willcox wandering around The Antiques Warehouse during BBC2’s Bargain Hunt Famous Finds
Over the past few weeks I’ve been helping an old and dear friend with her website promotion - Hilary runs and owns The Antiques Warehouse. The Antiques Warehouse (AW) is a ’small’ antiques business, and even though it’s been operating since 1995, Hilary hasn’t really fully embraced the social media. I’ve recently set up a Twitter page for her - I’ll encourage and help her to sort out a Facebook page later.
Since I started helping bands with their website promotion in 2004, I have found the differences between promoting a business website and a musician’s website extremely interesting - Independent artists, musicians and bands do need to put in a little more creative sales effort! On the other hand, small businesses need to become slightly less focused on selling and concentrate more on just connecting with people.
When I first created the AW Twitter page (@AntiquesFarnham) and started following other antique establishments, in the hope they would follow back, I began receiving direct messages from TrueTwit:
“@Bla-di-bla, uses TrueTwit validation service. To validate click here: TrueTwit.com/1234Link.”
I had discovered TrueTwit validation, and as I unfollowed them I thought, what a dreadful first impression, what a social media branding blunder, what utter nonsense. I advise you NOT to use TrueTwit, however, I’ve never met a musician that does and maybe that says something?
As a footnote, TrueTwit validation service is meant to stop Twitter spam, confirm people aren’t robots and save you time. I’ve found the opposite is true, and that the people who use TrueTwit are usually spammers, spamming their fucking eBay & Etsy websites.
I’m almost certain that you need to do some Unfollowing on Twitter!
Your band’s Twitter account isn’t really the same as your personal Twitter account, it should be much more productive and engaging - You are entertainers.
This post is also about the people who you should follow (opposites, if you get my drift), and they should be friendly, interactive and informative tweeps.
- Unfollow everyone with a Verified Account (identified by a white tick on light blue rosette), like: https://twitter.com/JimiHendrix - They hardly ever follow back or interact - they are only interested in themselves.
- Unfollow everyone with Twitter’s own egg avatar, because they’re limp & lazy, like: https://twitter.com/WhiteStripe - No avatar, No follow. Also ignore the sexy girls in bikinis, if you can!
- Unfollow everyone without a Profile Bio, like: https://twitter.com/AtlBluesSociety - They’re not just lazy, they’re usually fake!
- Unfollow everyone with foreign or strange symbols in their Profile Bio, like: https://twitter.com/Rock_Bar_Garage - A contentious, politically correct issue? Maybe. But why would you follow someone who you do not understand? Also a sign of a spammer/ scammer/ Fake/Bot.
- Unfollow everyone with an odd, problematic and conflicting Username (@Moftyr369) and Profile Name (Mick Jagger) combination - If you don’t understand the connection between the two, then something is wrong. They’re a Fake/Bot.
- Unfollow everyone with an inactive account (less than 50 Tweets or hasn’t tweeted for 60 days) - they are lazy or defunct accounts. Watch out for new accounts!
- Unfollow everyone with a strange follower::following ratio. Usually there is a large disparity between who they follow (usually very low) and who follows them (usually very high), like: https://twitter.com/MercuryPrize - They’re not going to follow you, if they just did, they’ll unfollow! Also, zero (very low) followers, but following 2001 commonly indicates a fake account.
- Unfollow everyone with a strange tweet::follow ratio. Zero tweets, very bizarre - A repulsive and Fake account! Generally it’s the other way round with too many tweets.
- Unfollow everyone with unintelligible tweets::tweeting patterns. Genuine people who are worth following tend to follow a recognisable theme - People who are not worth following repeatedly tweet bollocks of the day.
- Unfollow everyone who tweets the same “reply” to @everybody Check out my music video and share: http://www.youtube.com/… - They’re Spammers.
- Unfollow everyone who doesn’t interact with other people. Typically it’s a “quote of the day” scenario, but equally it could be a too much automation and synchronisation with Facebook, YouTube or WordPress: fb.me/… youtu.be/… wp.me/… - The spammers are self-promoting and not using Twitter!
- Don’t be tempted to follow people who Favorite or Retweet your tweets but who don’t already follow you.
The duffers are easy to spot because they will frequently fall into more than one of the above categories. Of course there is a proviso… Some of these people who I’m telling you to unfollow may turn out to be your friends, and you really Do want to follow them. That’s okay. However, it may be a good idea for you to follow them from your own personal account, if you’ve got one!
When someone follows you, follow them back (unless you think they’re fake accounts) and try to keep some sort of parity between Followers and Following. And above all, endeavour to build real relationships with people :)
Resources - to keep track of what’s going on:
justunfollow.com - General Twitter tracking tool
unfollowers.me - General Twitter tracking tool
untweeps.com - Unfollow inactive Twitter users