Every day I scroll classical music Twitter in a mix of rage and sadness. My feed is clogged with tweets about canon composers. Always. A precious minority post regularly about marginalized composers, and I am eternally grateful for their representation in my feed. (You know who you are – you give me life! ❤
But I am dying for more. . .
If everyone who loves a composer who’s been left out of the canon, (not for “lack of quality” but for marginalization) tweeted about their favorites regularly… *GASP*
Classical music Twitter would be a much, much healthier place. For everyone.
On that mission, here are some easy tips if you’d like to join me and help:
1) K.I.S.S. – Keep It Simple and Short
(Yes, I changed the last word. Do you like it? 😉)
The simpler the better! Let go of profound and perfect. We have lots to say about our favorite composers. RESIST the temptation to tweet everything at once.
Threads and long tweets rarely catch attention, because the feed is oversaturated. Try not to use the full 280 characters. I try for 200 characters tops. The tweets that go nuts are frequently less than 100 characters.
Limit ONE IDEA PER TWEET.
Extra tip: I save cuts from long tweets in a notes file on my phone. Keep it for another day!
2) Make it FUN!
People respond to emojis/ snark/ enthusiasm/ passion in tweets. If it makes them laugh or smile, it will ALWAYS get more interaction. Always.
Pics of the composer help too.
Put links in replies to the tweet, and limit one tag or hashtag per tweet, whenever possible.
Name recognition is one of the biggest obstacles for most marginalized composers. Tweeting about the same composer many times may seem redundant to you, but it’s NOT to your followers.
There’s a “seven touches” marketing principle. SEVEN TIMES minimum before people will even REMEMBER the name.
EVERY CANON COMPOSER HAS A DIE-HARD FANDOM.
Every marginalized composer needs a fandom. No, I don’t mean worship or pedestals. It means devoted fans who purchase recordings, publications, and concert tickets whenever that composer is performed.
It doesn’t have to be the same composer every day. (I don’t wish my ADHD-induced hyperfocus-on-one-composer for ANYONE — HA!) But many once a week? It’s so exciting to meet other people who fan after the same composer as you. Or even better, win over new fans!
4) Simple Templates:
Tweets don’t have to be wise or witty. CLARITY is the only rule.
The goal isn’t tons of likes. The goal is exposure, even to one person.
[The first 6 months of @SarahFritzWritr, I was LUCKY if my tweets got 6 likes. It’s all trial and error. Now, I often spend days, weeks, even months thinking about tweets before I send them. Most of the ones that get good traction I spend 30-60 min. tightening in multiple drafts before tweeting them. No, I’m not exaggerating. No, I’m not advocating anyone spend that amount of time on Twitter. I just want you to know – it’s more about patience and perseverance than luck.]
If you’re not sure what to tweet, feel free to start with these very simple templates:
Now listening: [composer name and work] [optional emoji?]
I love [composer name]. My favorite work of theirs right now is [work name].
I’m such a fan of [composer name /work]. It’s perfect for when I’m [mood/activity].
Every tweet is an experiment. Learn from what does well and what doesn’t. Observe what tweets you like and try doing the same. No one can predict what the Twitter sphere will like at what time, or who may see it, or what mood they’re in that day.
Just don’t give up! Keep trying.
Final Thoughts & Frustrations
Twitter is a free sphere. Every time someone accuses me of worshipping Clara Schumann like she’s superior and criticizes me for not tweeting about other women composers… All I want to say is, Go ahead! Tweet about them!
[I retweet other people’s tweets about other composers every day, FYI.]
Many people jump on my Clara tweets with replies promoting other marginalized composers – at random. Which is fine but… I wish they’d also tweet about those composers from their own accounts. Ever.
I’m begging for more people to pleeease tweet about their favorite marginalized composers. Not just in replies to tweets when prompted by me or others. But original tweets.
Go out on a limb! Tell us what great music you love!
I’m not sure why so many are reluctant. A lot of reasons I suspect. If one of those is fear of getting hate for it — welcome to the club!
It’s not easy. But fighting prejudice never is.
I look forward to your tweets very much. 🙂