From a business perspective – is Twitter worth it?
In my opinion: YES. Let me tell you how.
As a voice-over actor, there are many types of people that are beneficial to your success. The main ones being your colleagues, businesses, agents, managers and casting directors.
Your colleagues. When we all work together and support each other, in turn we will each find success. How many times have you booked a job through a referral from one of your VO buddies or met a great connection through a networking event?
BUT to be successful in VO, that’s not enough…
Businesses. As a voice-over actor you’re not only a talent, you’re also an entrepreneur. No matter how many agents (or VO colleagues!) you have, you still would greatly benefit from directly marketing yourself. You need to network with businesses who HIRE voice-over talent.
THEN there’s more…
Agents, Managers & Casting Directors. Agents and casting directors can often times be the link between booking that BIG job & not ever even having access to it. You need to view agents, managers & casting directors as people on your side! As talent we’re always trying to find ways to land that big agent or manager and become BFFs with casting directors- well if you view them as people, not just “your in” to VO success, you’ll get a lot further. Networking with them, taking an interest in them as people, is a great way to start!
So where does Twitter fit in?
Thanks to social media, we have all of these WONDERFUL connections right at our fingertips! When you view marketing not just as “selling yourself” to that next big client, but rather building relationships with people and businesses that can in turn use your services, you are certain to find more success.
Twitter isn’t just about posting information about yourself. It’s about engaging in conversations and truly gaining an interest in the people you tweet with.
To make the most of your time on Twitter, you want to post credible, engaging info. The goal is to get the attention of your target audiences, get your tweets favorited & retweeted and gain new followers! All of this will help build your social media presence and in turn get you more connections which if networked with correctly can land you paying gigs!
How the heck do I use Twitter?
For Twitter, I like to use a program called Hootsuite. This program gives me the ability to create lists of people I want to follow, see when I’ve been mentioned in a tweet, when I’ve been retweeted & most importantly it gives me the ability to schedule tweets!
Part of your marketing plan should include hitting different target audiences. Once you have established WHO you want to get the attention of, find content written by that company, written by people from that company, or comments about that company & post it, while sharing a quick comment in your tweet about WHY you like that content. If you can’t personally relate to it, then the connection between you and that business will seem random. You want it to be obvious as to why you’re posting it and memorable to the business you’re tweeting about. In order for all of this to really matter, you want to tag that particular business and of course link to the information you’re tweeting about. Don’t forget to use appropriate hashtags as well – that’s key to making it obvious as to what it is you’re tweeting about and for people to find your posts when they search those hashtags.
You can find relevant content to post by doing a Google search, using Google alerts, by reading industry related blogs, following groups about those types of businesses on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+ , checking out those types of businesses on Pinterest and following them on Twitter. Retweeting information from companies and people you want to get the attention of, is a great way to do just that! Eventually they’ll notice you, which is why it is really important that your Twitter profile is fun, memorable and obvious that you’re a voice actor. Just that alone will make the connection obvious as to why you’re posting about something that is somehow related to you. If your profile just says “loves moonlit walks on the beach and candlelight dinners” you may get a date proposal, but they probably won’t think of you first next time they need a voice-over.
How do I make the most of Twitter without spending every waking minute using it?!
The key with successfully using social media in general, is to get in & get out and make the most of your time while you’re there. In an ideal week, I will spend a couple of hours the prior weekend researching and scheduling all of my tweets for that week, so by Monday I’m good to go! Then I’ll make it a point to sign onto Twitter once or twice throughout each day to retweet, comment on tweets I was tagged in & post a tweet or two on something that I may have just found out about. I’ll couple this with a lunch break or TV down time – and I know that if I don’t get to it, it’s no big deal, because I already have a bunch of tweets scheduled.
If it wasn’t possible to devote that time during the weekend, then I will schedule my tweets daily – each evening I’ll set up the tweets for the next day. It all depends on how much time I have. I tend to only have a post or two throughout the weekend because that IS my downtime and most of the businesses and people I hope to get the attention of are mainly engaged on social media Monday through Friday.
The beauty of social media, is once you have a presence for yourself, if you are too busy and can only plug out a couple of tweets that day (or even nothing at all!) you can pick it up again when you’re able, and most likely no one even noticed you were missing! However, if you’re only posting a tweet or two every few months, it’s probably not doing too much for your marketing.
Twitter is a moving thing. You get on & off when you can and once you have established a solid social media presence for yourself, you’ve always got a place there.