I know what you’re thinking. Why would you take advice about Twitter from a blogger who just put her blog up a few days ago and only has 15 followers right now? Okay, to be fair, my other blog ad hoc MOM has lots more, but it certainly doesn’t have thousands. Let’s just say Justin Beiber has nothing to worry about. But this is why you should listen to me. Up until a few months ago, I didn’t even have a Twitter account. But when I co-founded ad hoc MOM, other bloggers pointed out that we were missing out on a huge opportunity if we didn’t jump on the Twitter bandwagon. Unconvinced it was good for anything other than updates on who was enjoying “a fabulous glass of cabernet”, I decided to take a class on social media at the Columbia School of Journalism. I learned a ton, I steadily gain followers every week, and I rarely lose them. Slow and steady wins the race people! And as Professor Sreenivasan aka “The Twitter Tutor” said, it’s not all about numbers. So what is it about? And what should you be doing to increase the presence of your brand? Let me break it down for you, because if done thoughtfully, Twitter is a great way to branch out, make new contacts, collect good information, and build a platform. Have I mentioned yet how much publishers love an author with a platform? Well, they really do.
SATURDAY MORNING MEMOIR’S TWITTER CHECKLIST
Tweet about 3 – 5 times a day, never more than once an hour.
Think about it. How do you feel when you see the same picture in your Tweetdeck five times in a row? Make yourself a little bit elite people! Get everyone excited to see your tweets. I admit I’m reluctant to follow someone who has a history of tweeting very frequently.
Limit your tweets to 120 characters
The class was worth it JUST FOR THIS BIT OF INFORMATION. This makes it easy-peasy for someone to retweet you. If your tweet is longer, people are going to have to mess around with your tweet first. Who wants to take the time to do that? Make yourself easily re-tweetable!
Provide interesting, relevant and timely information.
People just don’t want to know that you’re drinking a cup of coffee – or that you’re going to bed. Seriously, is their anything less necessary than the “goodnight twitter!” tweet? If I see a great article, blog post or bit of information that’s going to be interesting I’ll tweet if to my followers. And I know I’m all about following someone else who does the same.
Be generous, be very very generous.
This was the best lesson I learned from the class. Social media is all about being generous! If you retweet something, take a minute to be careful and credit the person who sent the original tweet. I know it helps me get more followers, and therefore more traffic to my blog when I get the coveted RT, so I’m sure to do the same with others. Take the time to be careful and make sure you’re giving credit where credit is due.
If you want to check out more about social media, and all the crazy good stuff it can do for you, visit Professor Sreenivasan’s website http://www.sreetips.com/. There’s also information on his classes, seminars, etc.
And I so hope you’ll follow me at @memoirista! If you have any questions about Twitter, email me, I’ll do my best! firstname.lastname@example.org