The Bird is the Word: 5 Tweet-a-riffic ways to Own the Twitter-verse

How to use a hashtag on Twitter You’re all a-twitter! Maybe you have finally joined the social media site, or maybe you’ve had an account for a while but haven’t been able to cultivate an impressive following yet.

Don’t despair. Read on for ways to increase your Twitter engagement.

1. Tweak your profile.

We talk a lot about social media profiles, but there’s a reason. Your profile is the only way that people can get to know you. So, make sure that you have a photo instead of the dreaded “egg” avatar and that you have used the “profile” real estate to its best advantage with an interesting description of who you are. If your Twitter account is primarily business related, make sure to keep your profile similarly professional.

2. Be follow savvy.

Twitter is one of the few social networks where “following” doesn’t have to be reciprocal. Yep, you can follow Oprah, President Obama, or whomever your industry’s rock star is and don’t have to worry that they will “accept” you as a friend or connection.

So, when you choose people to follow, think big. Since one of your goals is to stay up-to-date on your industry and find good content to re-tweet, make sure you follow experts in the your field, noted writers and bloggers and other people who will keep you informed and also offer content of interest to YOUR followers.

One cool way to find people to follow is to check out other people’s lists and find ideas of who they follow. Watch what you see retweeted, and you might find someone new and interesting.

But beware as you blithely click “follow!” You want to watch your ratio of “followers” to “following.” Conventional wisdom is that you should keep them relatively similar. You don’t want to be someone who is following EVERYONE and not getting followed back; nor do you want to look like someone who doesn’t follow anyone and therefore might not be good at engagement.

3. RT @ # DM

How to Start Using Twitter for Business No, we’re not swearing at you….we’re using Twitter terms. By now, most people have a basic understanding of Twitter talk, but before you dive in, take some time to learn how Twitter works, and some terminology, like retweet, direct message, hashtags, etc.

Search online for articles with information and shortcuts about Twitter postings, or check out the Twitter site itself, which has its own comprehensive and easy-to-understand Twitter FAQ section.

4. or something fancier?

The Twitter website is a great place to start, but if you want to do more there are many, many options for website and apps. For example, I like Hootsuite, because when you retweet, it offers an opportunity to add your own commentary before or after the retweet. It’s a two-fer: you’re giving props to the person who wrote the tweet, and also adding your own personal spin.

Other sites might do the same as well; that is just my personal favorite. A popular one, Tweetdeck, is being discontinued in May, so you won’t want to fall in love with that one.

Check out this article for some additional social media app options.

5. Love your tweeps.

Remember what we always say: it’s SOCIAL media. Respond to someone’s tweet if they’ve posted something funny or interesting….or better yet, retweet it to your followers. Retweeting is an excellent way to be noticed by people you follow.

But don’t just blindly retweet too much. Make sure it has value; and ideally add your own commentary before the retweet. Of course you only have 140 characters, but sometimes you can add a short phrase like ‘Loved No. 6’ if you are retweeting a list, for example.

Before you retweet a link make sure you have read the article. Sometimes the content doesn’t match the headline and you might end up retweeting something with a spin you didn’t intend!

And if someone retweets you or follows you? Send a shout out! “Thanks for RT.” or “Thanks for follow.” Everyone likes to be appreciated.

Of course, especially if you are a business, make note of who is commenting to you and always, always address any issues or complaints. People use Twitter as a medium to have their voice heard and expect a response.

Received a compliment? Retweet it and thank the person. Do everything you can to actively engage with your followers.

Want to know more about effectively using Twitter for business? I am offering a special consultation, “60 Minutes to the RIGHT Twitter Followers.” Click here to find out more.

Got other ideas for sharing the love on Twitter? Post them in our comments, or share them on our twitter feed!

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