5 Essential Twitter Tips

Twitter has a committed following around the world, but you wonder what the fuzz is all about. Perhaps you signed up for Twitter long time ago, but never really got started. Or you have tweeted for years, but begin to wonder whether it is worth your time. Read the tips below and learn how to make Twitter work for you and your business.

1.     Change Profile & Header Photo

The first things to do on Twitter is to add a profile photo, so that you don’t appear as an egghead. It’s best to use a recent front-facing photo of yourself, so that people can recognize or identify you.

Don’t use your dog’s picture as a profile photo, unless it’s your dog’s Twitter account!Click To Tweet

Next up is adding context to who you are with a captivating header photo. This could be an illustration of your work, the place you live, your hobbies, or your family. Showcase your photographic or design skills or look for free stock images.

Businesses can use Twitter to promote their corporate brand, by using their logo as the profile photo and their portfolio, happy customers, or employees as the header photo. Startups can add some personality with an image of the founder in the profile or header photo.

2.     Change Profile Text

Next up is changing the text of your profile by populating the following fields:

  1. Name – Just stick to your proper name. For instance, I use Willy Simons, not Precious Jewel.
  2. Handle – Keep this consistent with your name. I changed mine from @WillySimons1 to @Willy_Simons, when I started using Twitter.
  3. Bio – Use the 160 wisely and tell us what’s interesting about you. Not so sure whether that includes mentioning that you are a Proud Dad or a Man U fan!
  4. Location – Add your location (e.g. Nairobi, Kenya), since it matters where you live or work.
  5. Website – Add the URL of your website, or insert the link to your LinkedIn profile.
  6. Theme Color – Choose a color that stands out and represents you or your brand.
  7. Birthday – I left mine blank, since I hate to be woken up by people singing ‘Happy Birthday’.
Use a Twitter profile that introduces you to the world in a truly inspiring manner!Click To Tweet

3.     Tweet Value

It is paramount that you always use a positive tone on Twitter. Complaints about power outages, personal disagreements, or rants about politics are better taken elsewhere. You won’t be the first person to damage your career or public image by being careless or clueless on Twitter!

Don’t rant about politics or tribalism on Twitter; be the difference you want to see!Click To Tweet

Please ensure that your tweets offer value to your audience. You could feel wonderful about the meal you are having or the goal your team just scored, but is it relevant to your Twitter audience? Though tweets are limited to 140 characters, few people like to read links, hashtags, or handles without normal language.

4.     Post Frequently & Consistently

The one key to success on Twitter is the frequency and quality of your tweets. Posting 3 to 5 tweets a day is a minimum, but no harm is done if you post every 15 minutes. Tweets have a short lifetime, so post repeatedly to ensure that followers get to see them. Since you can’t be on Twitter the whole day, you need to use a social media management tool like Buffer or Hootsuite.

A social media management tool also helps you to be consistent in what you tweet about. Early on, Twitter inspiration came to me in rapid bursts, that were followed by periods of silence. Today I tweet at least 3 times a day on carefully chosen themes with a dash of humor or commentary.

Use a social media management tool to post frequently and consistently!Click To Tweet

5.     Define Your Objectives

It’s important to know why you are on Twitter, so that you develop the right tactics (e.g. follow). Here are the major reasons, with some tips on do’s and don’ts:

  1. Followers – Your initial objective is probably reaching 100 or even 1,000 followers, but the quality of your audience builds your credibility. Getting rid of followers is hard, so ensure that you attract the right people into your audience.
  2. Impressions – You want your tweets to be read by a large audience. Write quality tweets, but also join the conversation on trending topics and insert relevant hashtags. Retweets will increase your potential audience so find and engage the influencers in your industry.
  3. Engagement – People might read your tweets, but engagement shows whether they liked it. To promote likes and retweets you can personally thank the people that do so. Follow them if you like what they are tweeting about or belong to your target audience!
  4. Outbound Clicks – You might be on Twitter to direct people to your website or your blog. To promote this, you obviously need to share the link, but most importantly add compelling text and visuals. Without it, the link is just another distraction.
Find out why you are on a Twitter to make it a more valuable experience!Click To Tweet

Conclusion

Start implementing these tips to make Twitter work for you or your business. On Twitter, start following Twitter influencers and search using the hashtag #TwitterTips. Learn to be patient, since it takes time before some of your efforts begin to show results.

Need help, more tips? Follow us on Twitter (@Willy_Simons, @SpatialityKe), connect with me on LinkedIn or pay a visit to the Spatiality website

About Author:

Willy Simons came to Kenya from The Netherlands in 1994. He is a serial entrepreneur and co-founder of Oakar Services, Esri Eastern Africa and Spatiality. He blogs about business, geospatial technology and cloud computing.