Twitter was quickly adopted by kids to broadcast what you are doing. Adults quicky called it fritter. But surprisingly Twitter has grown quickly among lots of time-challenged adults who dig the micro-blog limit of 140 characters and it has quickly become a tool of choice for social networking geniuses and advocates like Gary Vaynerchuk of winelibrarytv.com and Chris Brogan who writes about social networking business strategies.
So – the bottom line is Twitter is yet another tool you can use to build brand, fans, and community. The question is –
Should you Twitter?
I think if you have a business or are your own business, like many artists are, then yes, I think you should consider Twittering, or definitely know why you are not. And here’s why. This is where the new business is going – it’s going to the web and since this is how they play, then if you don’t want to be left behind, you might consider playing there too.
The good news is Twitter is easy, Twitter is quick, and that makes it a good place to start practicing this new “dialoguing” business that’s changing the rules and the game.
How to Twitter?
Twitter is touted as mini-blogging or micro-blogging. You are allowed only 140 characters to write a post so they are very short posts, kind of like a Facebook status. You can update often throughout the day, and let people know what you’re doing. You can update from the web, or by texting from your cell phone.
But there’s no sense in jumping on the Twitter bandwagon if you don’t really know why you are doing it. To that end, I found this great article which outlines a Twitter strategy for bands. It is super comprehensive and smart, and explains how to make Twitter a part of your branding and marketing plan. It’s written by Ariel Hyatt of Ariel Publicity, a music PR firm, but this strategy will work for authors, artists, filmmakers, photographers, entrepreneurs or the self-employed too.
In the Musicians Twitter Roadmap article above, Ariel interviews Laura Fitton, who explains how to use Twitter to create a community and promote yourself even if you are new to “social networking.” They talk about how to sign up and set up your profile, create the right brand, linke to Your Mobile Phone, how to find friends and follow them, who to follow and more, in nice and easy to understand English.
What to Twitter?
There are lots of gurus out there telling people what to Twitter. The thing to remember is that Twittering isn’t about the direct sell, but about building relationships and trust. This is becoming more important as the consumer public is becoming more knowledgable and wary of the hard sell or scams, and also more apt to do a ton of research online before buying. There is a general trend toward more authenticity and transparency too – fans want to know you and hear your thoughts and opinions, not those that your PR person made up.
One way to build fans and friends is to join in on the conversation. Do a search on Twitter using this Twitter search tool for words like your name, your book titles, your genre or your topic of expertise – and you can reply to people using the @ sign. Add your two cents worth, or point out a link to that subject on your or someone else’s blog.
How to find Twitter Friends.
Social networking is all about friends. The more you have the better. The article above explains how to find friends. A new tool launched just 3 weeks ago can also help.
Mr Tweet helps you find friends by analyzing your current network and suggesting new friends and members whose feeds may be of interest. Just follow Mr tweet then wait for a DM, or direct message from the service. I did, and just got myself a load of new friends to follow.
But just a bit. Die hard Twitter users and social networkers frown on automation because it’s the antithesis of the spirit, which is all about communication, dialogue and transparency.
But I think setting your Twitter posts to automatically update your Facebook status is fine. To do that go to your Facebook account and install the Twitter application. Then set it to allow status updates from Twitter. You can change this anytime.
I think sending Twitter updates to your MySpace page is also ok, especially if you are like me and don’t go there very often anymore. Twitter has created customizable “badges” which are widgets that you can embed onto your MySpace pages as well as onto other websites and blogs, which will show your latest tweets.
My fave Twitter friends
I like having “friends” who are really smart and passionate about their subjects, go deep into it, and have no trouble sharing what they know. When I pop onto twitter via the web, I am always guaranteed a link to a fascinating article, post or news item from Gary Vaynerchuk, Chris Brogan, or Ken Nichols to name just a few.
They are also good examples of how to Tweet useful tweets. I really don’t care that you are eating breakfast, or are tired, or are going somewhere – unless I am stalking you. If I just admire you, I’d rather you spare me and just tell me what you learned when you got there.
Twittering isn’t for you if:
- your audience doesn’t use it
- you absolutely don’t have time
- you don’t care about listening
- you don’t like sharing
Should Screenwriters Twitter?
More Tips on Twittering Real Good from some bright minds
Check back often as I will be updating this whenever I come across a great article.
- How To Use Twitter by Guy Kawasaki, the power entrepeneur, explains how he uses Twitter as a Twool. Excellent advice and some more great reasoning on why you should use Twitter as a marketing tool.
- Twitter Power Guide eBook. For the more advanced Twitter user familiar with Google Reader, RSS and Yahoo Pipes, this FREE ebook is just out from Christopher Penn – savvy marketer, blogger, podcaster and podcamp founder. Not to be missed.
- To get up to speed with Google reader, here’s my How To RSS guide with Google Reader.
- Darren Rouse of Problogger and Twitip writes his thoughts on the blogging VS Twitter debate, and how the two platforms compliment each other.
Last but not least Follow Me on Twitter
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