Rob Dubbin, one of those awesome writers for The Colbert Report who’s moved with Stephen Colbert to The Late Show, summed up Twitter’s role in cyberspace quite well:
Twitter’s greatest strength is that its users have total control over whom they follow and what they see. As a business, Twitter’s greatest opportunity is in violating that control with advertisements.
That passage came from his essay in The New Yorker extolling the raisons d’être of Twitter bots, those automated programs designed to provide a symbiosis between banality and spam for the sake of divertissement.
The moral of the story is this:
If you’re going to establish any sort of useful presence on Twitter — for business and/or personal reasons — don’t be banal. The wit machines and spammers will overwhelm you to the point of insignificance and/or irrelevance.
The question, then, is this:
Are you making the most of your time on Twitter to generate positive results?
To answer that question, here are 25 Twitter tips to help you tweet like a pro from successful, influential power Twitter users:
25. Aaron Lee @AskAaronLee
My best tip for those who are new to Twitter is to follow the CBS Rule. It stands for Connect, Build, and Share.
C: Connect with new people everyday, you can do so easily with Twitter chats, following new people, joining a conversation, or even by reaching out to blog authors.
B: Build relationships by continuing engagement with people. This can be done by responding to tweets and keeping conversations going. Best tip to maintain a great relationship would be to add people to twitter lists. Build your Twitter lists to separate the conversationalists that you need to engage.
S: Share tweets that adds value to the stream. Adding value to the stream is how to stand out in Twitter. A good tip would be to pick a balanced mixture of content.
One of the best things I ever learned to do with using Twitter is to connect with people through event hashtags before the event.
Find a few people you consider interesting and make it a goal to seek these people out at the event. If they have a website, make notes of things in common to talk about in person.
Some of my best friends and clients have come from just doing my research on people before conferences. It’s also a great way to get involved in event hashtags and make yourself visible to the community.
If you’re just getting started on Twitter, take a peek at #hashtags that interest you.
A hashtag — the #-sign directly touching the front of a word with no space in between — is simply using a word purposefully, so other people can proactively be involved in the conversation/tweets on a topic anywhere in the world. #SocialGood is a personal favorite.
You can also find people near you talking about things that interest by you using Twitter Search in a number of ways. If you look around a bit it’s easy to find people and topics you’ll enjoy following!
Be yourself. Don’t be upset if your first tweets seem as if they’re going out into nothing. Talk about what interests you, share articles on topics that interest you.
Use hashtags to help others find them, and always make sure you @-tag the author, when possible, in the tweet.
If you find an article because of someone else on Twitter, even if you tweet it from the article page, make sure to tip your hat to that person in the tweet so they know you noticed. Even the most seasoned Twitter pro feels good when someone shows they found something cool due to her tweet.
Social media is not just for transmitting a message. You should listen, like you would if you were sitting in front of someone.
Make sure you give more than you take, just like in real life, because the karma effect works magically when we all share and promote others.
And always do your best to be yourself. It’s just as important online as offline to be authentic, fun, creative and, if possible, inspire others with your words and actions.
20. Britt Michaelian @BrittMichaelian
When you first begin interacting on Twitter, it’s very similar to attending a networking event where you may not know a single person. One of the best ways to show up and get the most out of your time on Twitter is to have a clear goal outlined with action steps and desired results.
Know who (business contacts), what (information) and why (purpose) you are looking to connect with on Twitter and beyond. Your tweets should share thoughts, tips, resources that will help your target connections to reach their goals.
Be generous with retweets, but don’t forget to share your own thoughts that can be retweeted. Twitter is not as much about you getting what you want as it is you helping others to get what they want. It is about sharing and having conversations that are win-win scenarios for everyone involved. Bottom line, be smart and have fun!
Social Media is about connecting, engaging and meeting incredible people. Twitter is such a powerful medium. It allows us to connect with people across the globe. We can form long-term friendships with those who truly support us.
There are many different and creative ways to utilize Twitter, but my No 1 tip is simply: engagement. Reach out, retweet, thank, and support one another. Always be yourself and stay positive. Twitter is real life in digital form. Better yet, you can take your online friendships further and meet in person.
The more you engage others, the stronger relationships you’ll form. There is so much to learn from others. Twitter is a source of knowledge, limitless content and valuable information. You can connect with brands, business owners and anyone you’d like to reach out to. The opportunity is endless. Keep Engaging. Twitter is Awesome.
My number one tip has always been share and be nice. OK that was two.
I have also seen myself as being like customer service, helping my followers in anyway I can through sharing good and helpful information, resharing my followers’ content or tweets (must be quality stuff), engaging my followers, asking and answering questions.
With that said, also be careful whom you trust and believe in social media. There are many fakes, spammers and scammers. Do your research and go with your gut feeling.
Tweets that start with “@…” are mostly private and won’t be seen by many people. If you are @Mom on Twitter, and @Dad sends you this tweet:
@Mom Dinner out tonight?
None of @Dad’s follower’s will see it unless they also follow you. So that also means none of your followers will see a tweet like this:
@TweetSmarter is very helpful. If you’re looking for help, contact them … unless they already follow @TweetSmarter!
In order to rewrite the tweet so more of your followers can see it, put something in front of the username. The two most common ways to do that are:
- .@TweetSmarter is very helpful. If you’re looking for help, contact them.
- If you’re looking for help on Twitter, try @TweetSmarter. They’re great!
Converse with others … don’t just tell the world what you are up to or only post your activities.
Engage your followers and speak to them … even if you don’t have the time for lengthy dialogue, a quick tweet by hello or thank you shows your acknowledgment of their tweet to you.
As in other aspects of our life, twitter is in real life … and we must honor those who take the time to send a smile … so remember to be genuine and treat others here as you would at a networking event.
To accomplish this I use an application called Hootsuite. This tool helps you stay in touch with your followers and manage your social media across many different platforms. One post can reach your twitter followers, your Facebook or Google + contacts and others! They have a great free service ! They’re also on twitter and very helpful to users @hootsuite.”
15. Esta Singer @SheConsulting
Be real. Engage peeps who inspire. Be relevant, retweet, reach out. Twitter is a gift. Be present to others, they’ll be present for you.
I wrote this quote about a year after I started twitter:
Like wind in the sky, twittertakes ideas to places out of your control, and returns ideas within your grasp.
To gain new followers, you have to follow people back, but not necessarily everybody.
One of the most helpful sites to help me manage this is Manage Flitter. Not only will it help you weed out inactive accounts, it will also show you who isn’t following you back.
And since being new may be undoubtedly overwhelming at first, make sure to utilize the Favorite function within the Twitter platform. Not only is this a good way for you to ‘mark’ where you left off or perhaps note good content you may want to look at later, it will also let the original content creator know that you have taken the time and are interested in what they have to share.
And who knows? It may very likely prompt them to start following you.
I Choose Kindness.
On twitter, as in life, we choose who we associate with. I surround myself with people who go out of their way to be nice, to be helpful, to be comforting, to be supportive, and to be kind.
Kindness can entail many things, but keeping it simple, use the three S’s:
Support. Share. Sincerity.
I choose to follow people on twitter who are giving and helpful, funny, smart, talented, artistic, brave, and inspirational. And all sharetheir gifts.
I support them by sharing those things with my followers, who in turn share them. When we use our talents to help someone else become successful, we all win.
Fixate on the relationships, not the numbers.
It’s really easy to become fixated with the numbers, like how many followers you have or what your follow to follower ratio is. And it’s easy to get obsessed with trying to raise your Klout or Kred score.
Instead of fixating on the numbers, focus on building good relationships with others on Twitter. Social isn’t about the numbers, it’s about the relationships. Be patient and build good relationships; you can meet some pretty awesome people on Twitter.
Pay it forward.
Be true to yourself, but also try to make Social Media useful for your followers. Hold up a ‘mirror’ to the kind of people you want to attract and provide information and/or tips that benefit them.
10. Joyce Cherrier@JoyceCherrier
Consider your followers. Like words thrown out while highly emotional in an argument, tweets have a lasting impact, good or bad.
Tweeting what you are passionate about is admired and welcomed, but being mean and abusive is not. Think about your tweets before you tweet them and know they’re permanent and cannot be taken back.
Make your tweets count in some positive way for someone, and it will return to you in a positive way. More important than gaining followers, you will gain positive interactions and relationships.
Social media success = sharing, caring, listening, humor, being of service, and being a better version of yourself.
If you’re new to Twitter and looking to find people to follow, sign up for a free account at SocialOomph.
One of their free features is keyword alerts. You can have these emailed to you (they have two different email delivery options: 12 and 24 hours). You can add up to 50 keywords; examples could include a specific industry, geographic location, or keyword phrase, eg- “gluten free” … they even have a wizard to help you if you aren’t comfy with Boolean search.
The best tip I can give you is to acknowledge and engage with those that engage with you, assuming they’re real people. (Yes, Twitter is full of bots.)
Don’t just send out random thank you tweets, though: Try to personalize them for each user, and as you begin to use Twitter to find news and information that is relevant to your objective, give preference to curating and sharing content from those who support you.
If you are new to twitter, the best way to learn is to find a few mentors and watch them carefully.
I created lists of my mentors and they became invaluable in helping me easily follow their tweets. Some key mentors should come from people in your industry, trade publications, active social media people.
Once you have created a list of mentors, follow some of their tweet tactics:
- how they create unique retweets,
- how they @mention people,
- how they spread their scheduling throughout the day,
- how they vary their tweets to appeal to their core audience,
- how they shorten links, and
- how they engage with their followers.
Most importantly, stay with it. It will pay off and become rewarding and fun.
5. Racquel Narciso @OddSauce
Know your RT etiquette.
Sometimes people you follow will need help promoting something, gathering information, or getting information out. If their work is something you enjoy and believe in, then by all means do them a solid and hit that retweet button.
Just be careful about retweeting inaccurate information, particularly during times of crisis. Sending out the wrong info could create unnecessary panic among your followers and spread faster than you can control it. It’s always wiser to confirm that your data is correct before you retweet.
Helping other people and causes broaden their reach on Twitter is a good deed that requires almost no effort on your part. And when the time comes that you need help getting the word out about something, your followers will be more likely to extend the same kindness.
And when they do, don’t forget to say thank you!
My advice for those new to twitter would be to take time building relationships.
There are no shortcuts. Be yourself when you tweet, and make sure your profile and tweets represent you. You don’t have much room to let users know who you are, so write a descriptive bio and include a good picture of yourself.
Don’t worry about your follower count, but rather focus on your relationships with those that do follow you. Make sure you always reply and/or thank those that mention or RT you as quickly as possible.
Twitter moves fast, so the quicker you reply, the better. Use lists to segment your followers and a good dashboard like HootSuite or TweetDeck. These will help you keep up with those you follow.
Most of all, remember to have fun. Twitter is an exciting network, and you’ll meet more new people here than anywhere else online.
Social media is amazing. It has helped topple governments and fostered cross-cultural understanding around the world.
But no matter how you use social media, it all gets down to this: personal relationships.
I recommend sharing content from at least one person a day on twitter and making sure to +1 and like the content of folks as much as you have time for on Google Plus, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Facebook.
The work you put in now will pay huge dividends for you down the road. If you can focus on impacting people instead of impressing them, you’ll have great success.
If you’re just getting started on Twitter, follow, listen and reply first before broadcasting your tweets or links.
If you’re a constant broadcaster off the bat, it’s like shouting into the Grand Canyon; no one will be listening!
Also, if the ratio of your tweets is more broadcast than conversation, people who view your stream will think you’re an auto-tweeter and not a human.
Build your community first by engaging in others’ questions, conversations and trends. Not sure how to find people similar to you? Search the hashtag of your industry or favorite topic. You’ll find a wealth of peers.
If you are new to Twitter and want to know how to curate your own content, my advice is to first think of the things that most interest you, and then develop a bookmark folder to keep pages/sites handy when you’re looking for things to share.
By sharing what is interesting to you, you will attract people who are interested in the same things, and people who share common interests are much more likely to become acquaintances, conversationalists, friends and amplifiers of your timeline.
Author: Misty McPadden