Here Comes the Social Media Police
I’d like to start this blog post by saying that Twitter is necessary for the average (or above average) social media fanatic. So if you don’t have an account, you better get one—fast. Twitter is a great tool to market yourself, whether it’s professionally or personally. If you’re an artist, a writer, or whatever you choose to do with your life, you should have one.
I will admit to you all that I didn’t even start using Twitter until about a year and a half ago because a friend of mine (let’s just call her “Sweet T”) told me how great it was. I always love to see what my friends and colleagues are up to, especially if I don’t keep in regular contact with them.
Twitter is a simple way to share important information in 140 characters or less. What could be better, write? (See what I did there, y’all?) So anyway, I wanted to share with you 5 simple steps to market yourself on this little gem of a tool…without pissing people off.
1) Keep it updated.
Don’t tweet for one day and then leave it alone for a year. Just don’t. Not sure what to say? Perhaps mention some of the work you’re doing, links to an article you wrote (I use bitly to shorten articles), pictures of restaurants, concerts, or events you’re at, and so on and so forth. People like to know what you’re doing (and what I mean by that is, people like to creep.) Also have a profile picture of yourself—no, not your favorite beanie baby or a photo of Snooki. YOU.
2) Make it entertaining.
I always love it when those I’m following post things that I get a good laugh out of, even if it’s a retweet. Love retweets. Be fearless when it comes to starting dialogue. Maybe someone will reply. Definitely don’t be rude or ignorant, because that will probably help you to lose a follower or four. Just don’t be an asshole, okay? For instance, the whole Justin Bieber/Patrick Carney incident that went down a couple weeks ago—not cool. J. Biebs, you’re a little shit. (For the record, I never liked him anyway, but now I like him even less. Patrick Carney is forever my fave, and I respect him more because of how he reacted.) More on this raging lunacy here.
3) Post relevant content.
Keep your followers engaged in what you have to say. Depending on your occupation and interests, post content you find useful and important. I always love it when those I follow post links to articles where I may learn something new and exciting. It keeps me wanting more.
4) Use hashtags.
Hashtags are a great way for people to search for tweets that relate to a common topic and to create a community on Twitter. Now, some people take this a little too far. Please, don’t hashtag #every #single #word. That does no one any good and completely goes against the whole point of the hashtag. If you hashtag every word you tweet, I’m pretty sure 80% of your followers will unfollow. You look like an idiot. And you should most definitely not turn what was supposed to be one sentence into one word. Fortunately, @OhHashtagAbuse is policing Twitter for us. Don’t get caught.
5) Do not spam your followers.
This is for your own good. If you’re one of those people who constantly posts multiple unrelated updates to a trending topic, stop it. That gets annoying real quick. Don’t set up auto-tweets to market your book/album/brand new invention and then never log in again. And for the love of all that is holy, don’t spread hate via Twitter, especially if you want to keep your followers—and perhaps convince them to buy your products.
So there you have it, folks. Five steps to market yourself via Twitter without pissing people off. I do hope that has helped you in your quest to have people not hate you or unfollow you. Peace out.
Katie Marcario is a recent Nashville transplant who loves brewing beer and drinking that beer. She works at Kaleidoscope Media as the Director of Social Media and Web Content, but loves the chance to really speak her mind when asked. You can follow Katie @KaleidoscopePR or attempt to follow her personal account @kmarcario. It’s private, though, and she might be selective about her followers. She learned that trick from Jen’s husband.
(Jen would like to add that she no longer goes by the nickname Sweet T, and hasn’t since she left the black gospel choir in Brooklyn. She won’t answer to it; don’t even try.)