6 Strategies to Help You Use Twitter More Effectively
When I speak on social media topics, I hear a pretty consistent theme regarding Twitter and that is the fact that it is the least understood social network. Like anything worth doing, it takes time to figure it out, and more time to see the immense value in it.
I’ve been on Twitter just about from the beginning (2007) and I have to admit, I wasn’t sure we needed a microblogging platform. Think about it, Facebook was just going mainstream (2006) and people didn’t know what to do with that, so imagine trying to engage in 140 characters or less.
It’s a fact that Twitter has immense value from both a marketing and professional development angle, not to mention, it’s a great source for verifying breaking new facts. Let’s take the horrible Asiana tragedy of just a few weeks back. Did you know that reporters where getting their info via Twitter from those at the airport? (Some of the first photos to be shared online were tweets.)
Here are a few tips to help you in your quest to use Twitter more effectively.
1. Make sure you have a compelling profile. Always have a picture, give a brief bio, and for all that is holy, do not link to your Facebook account from your Twitter profile. That won’t really help people get to know you (if you’ve set your security settings correctly) unless they friend you (and they won’t) and then you accept them (and you might not want to.)
2. Intentionally Follow others. When considering who to follow on Twitter, start with those you know, followed by those with whom you share an interest. Chances are higher that someone will read or share your content if you have similar interests. Their profile and tweet history should give you an indication if you are in alignment with their interests. Once you have followed them, start the relationship by retweeting or favoriting one of their tweets (they will get a notification ,so it will put you on their radar.)
3. Be Community Minded. Twitter is a community where you can build great relationships. I could list of host of great connections that I have made on Twitter that have led to guest blogging opportunities, free books to review, and connecting with some great service providers.
In order to build those relationships it takes time. Stop and get to know people who follow you by reading their profiles, latest tweets, and visitng whatever website their profile links to. When people reach out to you, make sure you respond to them just as you would if they left you a voice message or an email. When people mention you or retweet you, thank them.
In the beginning, you may want to respond to those who follow you to thank them, but I recommend a personal approach instead of an automated reply. Many people aren’t fans of that and feel it is less than genuine, and that’s usually because it’s not done properly. Whatever you do, resist the urge to say something like “thanks for following me on Twitter, please follow me on Facebook, too” because that screams “I am all about numbers and I don’t really care about you.”
4. Create (and Share) Great Content. The key to having your content shared and favorited (which is a good thing) is to produce great content. And by great, I mean, not just average stuff about what your business does, but the good stuff; perhaps the stuff people would expect to pay to read (not all of it of course). In the end, givers gain; you cannot out give the law of sowing and reaping and it’s no different in this arena.
5. Become a Producer. One simple way you can become a content producer is to create a Daily Twitter Newsletter through a free service called Paper.li. It will find content shared on Twitter based on your criteria such as topics you want to share on. It will challenge any limiting beliefs you have on collaborating and you will likely end up promoting your competition (if you believe you really have competitors) but the good news is that the wonderful law of sowing and reaping won’t leave you hanging as others should be sharing your content as well.
6. Collaborate. Some of the best “Twitter love” I have received was through collaboration. By this I mean that I started by mentioning and linking to others in the blog post that I created, then when I shared it on Twitter, I tagged them. This usually results in them sharing and/or favoriting the tweet, which “endorses” you to their followers and in the end some of those folks may want to follow you to learn more about you, since you apparently are of interest to someone they follow.
I hope these steps help you go to the next level. What action step are you going to take today to move towards Twitter mastery?
You can start by following us on Twitter: @AKAInternetMktg