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Twitter: The Basics

Along with Facebook, I resisted Twitter like the plague.  Last year at this time, I thought people who tweeted were a little on the crazy side.  Well, I guess I’ve joined the crazies because I love Twitter, and it is, by far, my favorite way to market.

However, it wasn’t a one-jump to be here thing for me.  My enjoyment of Twitter began as hate and loathing.

Simply put:  I just didn’t get it.  I didn’t understand it.  There was what appeared to be a separate language going on over there.  It took spending time on the medium for several days straight and then some help from my FB groupies before I came to appreciate Twitter.

The first thing you need to know is that on Twitter, you can “follow” people, and people will “follow” you back.  So say I wanted to follow Stephen King, I would search for him and if I could find him, I would click “Follow.”  I would be “following” 1 person.

Good so far, right?

Cool.

Now, people can also follow you.  When you start, you will probably follow people who are your friends or professional acquaintances.  Some of those will want to follow you back.  At first I followed everyone who followed me, but I learned you need to use discretion for a couple of reasons.

#1  Not everyone is worth following.  I have made a rule for myself that if someone tweets profanity at me (even in a retweet from someone else), I unfollow them.  I don’t have time nor the patience to put up with that.  I don’t need the trash in my life.  So if they can’t keep it clean and positive, they don’t get a place in my day.

#2  Some people tweet relentlessly about their one thing–their cause, their program, their book.  After I’ve read a tweet about how “Winnable” this program is 15 times, I’m out of there.

#3  Twitter won’t tell you this until you get to the magic 2,000 number–but if when you reach it, you are following more people than are following you, you can’t follow anymore.  Until your followers catch up with your followings, you are stuck.  So just reciprocating follows to increase your followers count won’t work forever.

 

Stick close the next week because I’ll show you how to reach MANY more people than your basic followers, but for now, this is a good place to start.  If you’re not on Twitter, sign up (with your writing name as your @… don’t sign up as @PenBaby unless you write under that name.  Why?  Because you are building a brand, and if you build a @PenBaby brand on Twitter, that won’t transfer to anyone knowing who you are or catching on your writing name when they go to Amazon!).

Once you’re sign up, play around a little.  Follow some people.  Get a feel for the language.  We’ll talk more next time.

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  1. Tracy
    July 18, 2012 at 3:03 am

    Staci, can you explain point #3 a little more? Right now, I have 1111 followers and I’m following 1411. When I reach 2000 of which number, what will happen? Is there anything I should/could do before I reach the 2000?

    • July 18, 2012 at 3:51 am

      It’s a followers to following ratio. When you hit 2,000 following, you HAVE to have more than 2,000 followers OR Twitter will not let you follow anyone else until you do. They don’t warn you about it until it happens.

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