This week I had the privilege of joining other social media “influencers” at the OMGInsider studios to help actress Lori Loughlin (FULL HOUSE, 90210) lose her “twitter virginity”. It was a fun morning and also a good time to formulate my thoughts on explaining Twitter to others. (Watch the episode of Lori sending her first tweet to John Stamos here >> LORI’S FIRST TWEET
So, in my effort to provide an educational spin on the social media phenomenon known as TWEETING.. I will provide the 411 as I know it.
What is Twitter?
Twitter is a social media platform that in my head is like a giant gathering of people. Some have common interests and some don’t. You may not wish to engage in conversation with everyone, but, it can help shine a spotlight on a person’s agenda, pop culture, business savvy or philanthropic causes. It also is “social” meaning it can lead to true relationships where you actually meet and not only tweet with people.
Twitter is not for anyone who doesn’t like to share or is not trusting of what they read. It also is not for people who are finger happy and feel the need to tweet about every thought that crosses their mind space.
How to start on Twitter?
First you must decide if you wish to join Twitter and which name best explains your brand. Perhaps it is your name or your company name. My twitter handle is @LouiseASL - it is my name Louise and my business endeavor American Sign Language or ASL. In my biio, I explain about myself and love for ASL.. hopefully people make the connection.
Note.. use some caution with Twitter names. One person thought my Twitter was Louise ASS… oops..
Once you have decided on your name and a succinct bio be sure to upload a photo that is flattering and close up. DO not upload your account with the Twitter EGG. That just means that you are a newbie and not worth being taken serious.
Then what to do?
Use the search feature to find people of like interests or trusted news providers. Perhaps you like to follow authors, celebrities or people well known in the Twittersphere. And of course, if you are respectful and like to be amused go ahead and follow me here>> @LouiseASL
Rules of the Twitter Universe
Twitter has a long list of rules that you will need to agree to before you send the first tweet. But, here are some that one must also follow unless you wish to be a lone wolf on Twitter or part of a nasty thread of “meanie” tweets.
- DO NOT SPAM others. You spam me and I press UNFOLLOW or BLOCK in a flash
- TWITTER is not where you get to “out” someone or bully. Anyone who bullies by writing negative tweets, even in 140 characters or less” is despicable in my opinion. We need to play by the rules of kindergarten.. starting with “play fair”. (Here are the basics of kindergarten rules as outlined by author Robert Fulghum, in case you forgot> RULES)
- Be gracious, humble and thankful. If people retweet your blog articles thank them. If they give you a nice shout out – thank them. Want to be forgotten on Twitter- don’t engage with others or be thankful.
- Learn to say it in 140 characters and use shortcuts such as TYVM (Thank You Very Much) or GR8 (GREAT)
Who should I follow and who should I not follow
Before you press FOLLOW check out the person. If they have very few or NO ONE following them then race for the Twitter hills! These people are most likely spammers.. that is of course if they are a big named person with a verified account and only follow a handful.
What are verified accounts?
@OPRAH verified (with a blue check mark after the name) means it is her real account and not someone who is using her name in the hopes to get Twitter love from others.
Can you make money or get “stuff” from Twitter
Well this is a topic for another blog.. but if you wish to read up on how to use social media for marketing and branding then go to these reliable resources and read their numerous articles about social media marketing.
Does it cost anything?
No Twitter is FREE. But, if you are mean, bully or spam others it could cost you something more valuable – your reputation!
Who are the TOP people with the most followers on TWITTER?
This list is always changing. But, here is a recent tabulation. It may surprise you! TOP TWITTER ACCOUNTS
What about this PINTEREST that I hear so much about?
OY.. come back another day to read a blog about Pinterest!