For a couple months now I’ve been trying to come to terms with the recent craze for twitter trends amongst Nigerian artistes, especially the emerging artistes. Way back in 2010 when twitter got popular amongst us, twitter trends use to be a “REAL” thing. It took over 500 – 1000 tweets to make a topic or a word trend.
Sometime in 2012, Nigerians turned it into a mess. It became an “in” thing for the likes of Tweet Oracle and Don Baba J to trend a topic everyday due to their large number of followers. Well, we all thought it was fun not until the parody accounts came flooding into our timelines. They desecrated the ideology of twitter trends and that was all it took to loose its glory!
I remember the first time I had to make a client’s song trend on demand in September 2012, it was amongst the first of it’s kind! I wouldn’t want to mention names, but we did trend the song title and sent out mails to our bloggers and music critiques, but what we got in return was never bargained for! Not only did the song title trend in Lagos and Nigeria for three (3) days, the song was on every music portal/blog/website that existed back then, from key websites down to “.blogspot.coms”. Mind you, my client was an upcoming artiste, and you can guess what I did; the “trenders” were made to tweet links of the song for a whole week after the trend/release date.
Now that was the idea! To make a song trend enough to disturb the online community just so it can get anyone’s attention enough to listen to the song. But today, it’s been made a mess. Trending topics on twitter is a shadow of what it was meant to be, thanks to the many “trenders” and unnecessary trends of course.
Virtually every artiste (from major to emerging) wants to trend their names & songs on twitter these days, I understand the need for that. That’s not a problem, but how it’s done is a major determinant what the artiste gets in return. Most of these accounts who trend topics practically flood your timeline enough to get you pissed. I mean, why would you ask questions like, “When last did you have s*x?” and tag a song title to such a tweet? Left to me, I’d never check that song or video out especially when I don’t even know who the artiste is.
I believe twitter trends got really messed up sometime last year 2013. You see upcoming artistes looking for money to “trend” when they ought to be distributing their materials. I mean, you spend say N20, 000 -N30, 000 trending your song on twitter, and you cannot afford a publicist’s service or even get that song on a reputable website! Honestly, how does twitter trend get you enough genuine listeners and critics though?
I don’t have a problem with A-list or popular artistes because whether or not they trend, they already have dedicated fans and listeners. I care about the emerging artistes who go through a lot to record, mix and master songs, go for photo-shoots, pay graphic designers and end up wasting resources on unnecessary promotion channels called “twitter trends”. Every Tom, Dick & Harry trends on twitter these days, and most tweeps only answer the questions or read the jokes your song is hash-tagged to and don’t even notice your song titled.
What’s worse? The “trender” tweets more jokes and questions that your song links! How can you come to terms with such method of “publicity”??
Dear trenders and owners of parody accounts, I’m neither against you nor am I trying to spoil your business, I just want you to know that you have to put these people (artistes) into consideration and publicize them properly without making a mess of their reputation with your methods.
And dear emerging artistes, stop wasting your hard earned resources and even worse, your school fees on redundant publicity methods and get good bloggers and critics to review and promote your songs to your target audience. Even if you have to trend it, promote it properly as well! Remember, a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.
By Joyce Imiegha
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