27/10/2011: Twitter Fixes or Twixes!Thursday, October 27, 2011 by Matt Woodward | Taxonomy: Best Practices, Social Networks, Software | No Comments
It hit home recently how little is really known about how best to use Twitter, and how easy it is to resolve some of the common mistakes made by individuals and businesses alike. There are tonnes of articles on Twitter mistakes throughout the internet, but none that seemed to cover everything that I like to recommend, so I figured I would compile my own and share some Twitter Fixes (or Twixes!) with you all!
I’ve also shared some resources that I’ve both used myself and recommended to others previously, I hope you find these useful! As always feel free to comment and let me know your thoughts!
- Let your network grow organically – By using twitter in the right way, you don’t need to follow thousands of people in hope that a few of them will follow you in return. Let the people that share your interests follow you by choice! It takes time, there are no quick wins – period! Having quality followers is far better than having thousands of drones!
- Strike the right balance between personality and professionalism – When you’re a brand it’s tempting to hide behind it, and not reveal a personality, in fear that you might say / do the wrong thing! Don’t be afraid! People like personality & knowing that they are interacting with a genuine persona at that business! Let your humour and a little informality through, but make sure you don’t take it too far – think talking to your potential in-laws for the first time, cracking a joke is one thing dropping the F bomb is something else entirely!
- Give your tweets some variety – If all you ever do is tweet about yourself or the services you sell, other users will quickly lose interest. Provide your follows with some sustenance such as a useful blog post you’ve written or industry / company news. This serves as a perfect medium to bring customers back to your website to read further!
- Customise your identity – For an individual this could be as little as updating your avatar to give yourself an identity, nobody likes to see the default twitter egg! Having a custom avatar will let others know you’re a more genuine user! For businesses you may want to go the whole hog and brand your entire twitter background. This can be useful to re-enforce your brand and also share useful information about your company – think contact details, services, values etc.
- The power of interaction! – Twitter is at its core an online community, if you don’t interact you’ll likely isolate yourself. Get in there, retweet (RT) messages to let others know you value / like their information, ‘reply to’ or ‘mention’ users and comment on their latest tweet. People like to talk, don’t miss out on the opportunity to interact and grow your following of like-minded people. One final note, don’t forget your manners – thanking people for a follow, even publicly rather than direct message (DM) goes a long way, even in the twitterverse! This also serves as a good place & time to let them know about your website or Facebook details 😉
- Appeal to the masses by tagging – Using hash tags (think #charity, #business, or #tech) helps to provide a context to your tweet and will let you target new users that don’t already follow you directly. There is no formality here, but there is popularity – find out which tags users / businesses are using and follow suit to target the same audience.
- Mashable’s Guide to Twitter – An excellent resource highlight a load of useful information / resources. Read it, absorb it, use it!
- Hashtags.org – A website which provides statistics / trends on the usage of hash tags. Can be useful to identify key hash tags to use.
- Tweetdeck – An excellent tool to use for tweeting, stable, free and very productive. Available on multiple platforms!