Day two of our research on Twitter will consist of tweet talk, and not much else. I believe it will be important to know how often these bands are tweeting, if they are following anyone, their following, tweet-frequency, and retweet-frequency. This will give us a decent grasp on how indie bands are using Twitter for social networking and marketing. I have carefully chosen five bands who released albums last year (2012). They will be Grizzly Bear, Of Monsters and Men, The Shins, The Lumineers, and Two Door Cinema Club. It’s a good idea to look at bands who have been busy touring and promoting their albums. They SHOULD be using social media to promote themselves in some fashion.
We’ll start off with Grizzly Bear. Of the five bands they tweet the most, by a wide margin too. They have tweeted 5,388 times, which is 2,181 more than any other band, and 597 times more the rest of the field combined. They’re busy on Twitter, that is evident. In the month of May they tweeted 26 times, and retweeted 28 times, for a grand total of 54. That is 1.74 tweets per day. Very active. 54 tweets was tops among the bands, but their 26 original tweets was only third highest. In other words, they tweet often but they retweet a lot. They currently follow 269 people, which is about on par with other bands I have looked at. You will see the extreme disparity between the bands in relation to “following.” Also of note, Grizzly Bear is followed by 85 thousand, which is fourth among the bands under research. That’s interesting. They are liked less, but are more active. That is more what I expected to find on Facebook, but didn’t. Hmm. Let’s see if this trend continues as we move forward. Below is a strange video for their latest single “Gun-Shy.”
Of Monsters and Men does things a little differently. They have tweeted a total of 323 times in their existence, which is extremely low in comparison to others. They only tweeted five times in May. Not what I expected. The weird thing about their Twitter account is that they follow 13,460 others. 13 thousand! Holy moly. They are well followed by 129 thousand, but rarely find time to tweet. Or perhaps they choose not to. They are Icelandic, so maybe tweeting is not something they are keen of. It’s interesting the extreme differences between two well-liked and well-known indie bands. I have not seen anyone who followed 13 thousand people yet in my research, until now.
The Shins are not very active on Twitter despite releasing an album in 2012. They have tweeted 213 times, the lowest of the group. They follow zero people. That’s quite a difference compared to Of Monsters and Men. They tweeted a total of four times last month, making it quite evident that they simply do not use Twitter to its full extent. They are an old band who appeals to somewhat older generations, so this may factor into these numbers. Also, members of the band have side-projects, such as Broken Bells. This may take away from Twitter time. Below is a video for their first single off of their new album called, “Simple Song.”
The next couple of bands are more active in comparison to the previous two. The Lumineers have tweet 1,048 times, which is pretty decent considering they haven’t been around very long. Their debut album was released just last year. They tweeted 34 total times in May, two of which were retweets. In comparison, Grizzly Bear retweeted quite often, but this trio chooses not to. I find this to be wise. Followers want to hear what you have to say, not other people’s opinions. They can find those on their own feeds. They are followed by 135 thousand, the second highest total of the five. There doesn’t seem to be much of a correlation between followers and tweet-frequency. The bands who are heavily followed seem to post more often, but this is not universal–there are exceptions like Of Monsters and Men.
Two Door Cinema Club is our final piece to the puzzle. Earlier I thought that perhaps Of Monsters and Men being from Iceland made a difference in post-frequency, but this group is from Ireland and they post often. 50 times to be exact–44 of which are original posts. That takes the top prize in the group. “Two Door” has some very impressive numbers to their name. They have tweet 3,207 times, are followed by 238 thousand, and tweet approximately 50 times a month. This is quality activity, especially since the majority of their tweets are original. Their massive following (238k) is quite surprising because of their slightly above-average like count on Facebook. They definitely seem to be using the space on Twitter more to their advantage. They currently follow 188 others, which is an average count. Below is a video for their second single off of “Beacon” called “Sun.”
This research was not as conclusive as I would have liked it to be. Patterns were hard to find. I do know, without a shadow of a doubt, that Twitter followers and Facebook likes do not match. That much is solidified. I know that every band uses Twitter in a different manor. Of Monsters and Men uses it as a way to follow people, organizations, bands, and celebrities that they want to hear from. Grizzly Bear uses it to tweet, retweet, tweet, and retweet. They are quite active. They seem to care more about quantity than quality, which we saw a lot of on Facebook. They have been around since Twitter’s inception so they have the experience that others don’t. The Shins seem not to use it all at. I know they are older, but they are far removed from their “glory days” and could probably use as much publicity as they can find. The Lumineers and Two Door Cinema Club use it similarly. They focus on daily original posts, sometimes twice daily. They also follow under 200 people, which keeps their intake at a minimum. I also learned that being “radio popular” does not equals higher volumes of followers, nor does it make them more active on Twitter. I suppose I also learned that some bands are also reluctant to using Twitter at all (The Shins). On Friday I plan on looking into the content of tweets. From what I have seen since joining Twitter is that photos and links are key to band tweets. We shall see if this in fact the case. Until next time.