Twitter Etiquette

Aug 2011

Twitter is quickly becoming a reliable and useful tool for individuals and businesses. In a recent survey, 37% of the journalists said they rely on Twitter to get breaking news. As it grows in popularity, you’ll also notice new users pop up or spammers so how do you separate yourself from the crowd and make sure you’re following the rules of Twitter and engaging properly?

Simple. You must follow Twitter etiquette.

1.) Fill out your bio and info: this step sounds simple yet so many people ignore it thinking they’ll just do it later when in fact it never gets done. Twitter gives you enough room to fill out your name, location, provide a website, and a 260 character bio. The link should go to a business URL, blog, etc. Don’t get wordy with your bio. It’s OK to put keywords that describe you or a short statement. Just make sure it states some important facts about you so that users that find your profile and then find some value in following you.

2.) Don’t promote yourself excessively: A lot of people mistake social media as a sales tool and don’t realize it’s a social tool. If all your tweets talk about how great you are, about your company, and what you’re selling; you won’t gain any followers and you’ll likely get blocked or flagged for spam. That doesn’t mean you can’t promote yourself. Remember: all good things in moderation. If you are willing to promote others, share useful links about your industry, then you can promote what it is that you do.

3.) Be kind, retweet: If you see something useful in your timeline (this is a stream of tweets by the people you are following), don’t be afraid to share it with your followers. Give them credit by using RT in front of their handle, using via (@username), or by (@username). This ensures they’ll see their tweet in your timeline and appreciate you for sharing their content.

4.) Respond to your followers: If someone shares your content via a retweet or asks you a question, be sure to get back to them in a timely matter. This will win you brownie points, keeps the conversation going, and keep things “social” like they should be. If you ignore your followers, they’ll most likely unfollow and this can create a negative brand image.

5.) Follow: Always run a search in Twitter of your interests to see who you can follow and engage with. Periodically check to see who has followed you back and if they match your interests, follow them back. You don’t have to follow everyone just follow those that match your purpose or personality on Twitter.

Last by not least, have fun. Don’t take it too seriously. Make new connections and have meaningful conversations. There are probably lots of other steps that I missed but these five are the most crucial to ensure your success with Twitter. Are you on Twitter? Let’s follow each other. Send me a tweet. You can find me @sbeasla or follow our team @KWSMTeam.

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