Twitter brought me a really special gift a month or two back, in the shape of Grace Nikae. She’s a concert pianist who is exploring the use of social media to build relationships with her audience and fans of music. In imagining how I’d advise someone who was a professional entertainer to use social media, I doubt that I could find someone more accomplished at reaching into social media than Grace. Let’s explore a bit.
Blog Behind the Scenes
Grace has a great blog called Stretching Intervals, which is a perfect mix of what goes on behind the scenes, as well as information about what it’s like to be a pianist. She writes posts that are worthy of being full fledged journalistic articles, and yet, they’re very approachable and readable.
By blogging what’s on her mind, Grace gives her fans, aspiring pianists, professional women, and anyone else who wants to know what it’s like to be a busy creative and professional a glimpse of what we all want to know.
Share a Little
Grace provides links to her YouTube videos, to photos on Flickr, and to other little tidbits all through her website. It gives you a sense of what she’s about, her style, and a peek at what you’re missing if you don’t go to her concerts. Sure there’s a store and other things you’d expect from a professional musician, but if you fault her for that, you’re crazy. After watching/listening to her YouTube videos, I plan on picking up her debut solo album, Fantasies, myself. : )
Grace also maintains a presence on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and a few other social sites, and though it’s a bit challenging to maintain it all, I’ve seen her have conversations on Twitter, and have been privy to several thoughtful comments on my blog. So she’s managing to find a little time to cover some thoughts and have conversations with people well outside her typical sphere of the world of a pianist.
Will it be fruitful? I guess Grace will have to tell us in several months whether all this social media brought her a different experience than before she started using it.
Musicians and comics know that MySpace is a viable place to meet new audiences, build community, and promote your performances. Dane Cook made a good chunk of his career’s launch off MySpace’s mechanisms. Facebook isn’t as effective for performers, but I know that more folks are coming over to try it out. Twitter? It’s not exactly teeming with celebrities, but savvy folks like Grace are trying it out, so we’ll see how that turns out. My advice?
- Do this social media yourself. Don’t use an assistant.
- Communicate two-way. Just blurting out your calendar isn’t going to win you friends.
- Be just as much about other people as you are yourself.
- Give us peeks behind the scenes.
- Share a little something.
- Don’t get lost in all this stuff, as your real product is your performances.
We have lots of talented and upcoming performers and entertainers in our midst, several of whom already use these tools to great effect. Is it having an impact on their career? Will these tools benefit the mainstream stars as much as it does those who have a built-in appeal to the social media set? Time will tell.
What other advice could we give entertainers with regards to social media? What’s your take?
The Social Media 100 is a project by Chris Brogan dedicated to writing 100 useful blog posts in a row about the tools, techniques, and strategies behind using social media for your business, your organization, or your own personal interests. Swing by [chrisbrogan.com] for more posts in the series, and if you have topic ideas, feel free to share them, as this is a group project, and your opinion matters.