Be Twitter Follow Worthy
Being Twitter follow worthy isn’t rocket science. In fact, successful twitter follow really comes down to the some simple etiquette basics with a little dose of treating others as you’d like to be treated thrown in.
Twitter is a form of social media. The emphasis is on social. As others, including David Meerman Scott and Jim Tobin and Lisa Braziel are fond of saying, think of it as a cocktail party. Follow basic rules of human interaction and twitter follow will come seamlessly and organically. Here are some helpful guidelines to follow:
1. Jump In!
The best way to learn about twitter is to jump right in. Go ahead and follow people. You can unfollow them later if you don’t like their tweets. If you get followed by someone who makes you uncomfortable, you can always block them. You are in control.
2. Be authentic and be interesting
Be engaging, be fun, be serious, be real…be you at your best. People engage with people, not a product. Don’t try and be something or someone you’re not. Twitter follow depends on you being a real person connecting with people in real time in real and meaningful ways.
3. Show us what you’re made of!
Put some thought into your twitter page. Make sure your bio tells us who you are and get a picture up of yourself pronto. Do not leave the default avatar – that’s a sure fire way to kill your chance at twitter follow. Find or create a background you like and make sure that as you are following people, you have posted something that gives potential followers a glimpse into who you are. Start watching the conversations of those you are following and jump in if you have something helpful or meaningful to add.
4. Follow H.A.L.T. rules
Never tweet when you’re too Hungry, Angry, Lonely or Tired. Remember the needs of your audience always and don’t tweet anything you might regret later.
5. Be conversational and remember your manners
Twitter is not a broadcast medium. It is a conversation. It is about engagement and NOT about pushing messages out. Engage in the conversations of others and others will engage in your conversations as well. If you are simply letting other people know what you are doing or thinking, chances are very good Twitter will not work for you. Thank others when they help you and engage in niceties like “Follow Fridays” where you acknowledge others who bring value to you through their tweets. Thank those who acknowledge you and the value you bring to them.
6. Be helpful
You’ve probably had or have a friend who takes and takes and takes. It doesn’t feel good in real life and it doesn’t feel good in Twitter either. The good news is in Twitter, it’s much easier to disengage. To be truly Twitter follow worthy, make sure you help others, offer advice where you can, and re-tweet messages that you think will be helpful to those following you. Do it because it’s the right thing to do. But know also that those you’ve been helpful to will be much more inclined to be helpful to you too.
7. Think twice about an auto follow program
There is great value in choosing who you follow. Sadly, an increasing number of people resort to pyramid-like services that will automatically get them new followers. It is popular with spammers and people looking to get big numbers of twitter follows fast. The end result? Not a lot of meaningful relationships but many new spammers looking for fast sales and big Twitter follow numbers. Slow and steady wins the race.
8. Tweet in Real Time
There are programs that let you set tweets for later – but setting your tweets on auto pilot has a serious downside. You are missing out on real conversations. Even if you try and make these auto tweets sound interesting, you’re really just broadcasting and are less likely to engage others.
9. Avoid Auto Direct Messages
If it’s worth thanking someone, it’s worth thanking them personally. Take the time to thank a twitter follow who is a real person engaging in real tweets and let them know that you’re following them too. See if there is a point of interest between you in their bio or on their twitter page. It’s a great relationship starter and you never know where it might lead.
10. Take it off line
There are opportunities to extend your twitter experience in the real world. Take advantage of the chance to step out into the real world and connect with the twitter followers you have. Opportunities will include conferences, conventions or informal meet ups when you’re visiting a new city. Twitter can open up whole new worlds for you if you want it to.
Twitter is what you make of it. It’s a fabulous way to meet new people, some of whom may be very interested in what you have to say. First and foremost, it is about relationships. If you remember that, you will have great Twitter follow and an all around terrific Twitter experience.