10 ways to get the most out of Twitter

I’m not usually one to form a cult-like following for a company. But if there was one platform I would swear on the world by, it’s Twitter. Let me explain why.

There are few things on the internet I am a bigger fan of than this social network. Founded in 2006 (“@jack: just setting up my twttr”), Twitter has completely revolutionized the way humans interact with news. I’ve been fortunate to connect and keep in touch with some awesome internet folks through Twitter; I’ve met some of my closest friends and trusted advisors through it. When I used to serve in spokesperson roles, almost half my media requests were forwarded to me on Twitter, helping me to not only create personal brand equity but make myself more accessible to potential connections. Corporations of all sizes have realized the advantages of Twitter, even going on to set up creative sales opportunities through it. While I could go on and on about the benefits of Twitter, it is really important that you be an active user in order to reap its full benefits.

Twitter remains to-date the only true mainstream ‘social’ networking platform. It is the real-time product of digital and social intertwined into one continuously rolling news feed. It is empowering that, with the right controls, any individual is able to amplify their voice. Unlike Facebook where you need a business page, anybody with an account is empowered to boost their tweets via Twitter Ads if they wished to promote themselves. The thing I love the most about Twitter is that their news feed algorithm is minimally altered, creating ample spaces for users to connect organically.

From my past three years on Twitter, I’ve been surprised time and time again at exactly how much 140 characters can do. Here are 10 examples of how you can leverage Twitter to your advantage:

1. Tweet at strangers! Join in on conversations that you see on your news feed and utilize the opportunity to voice your opinion. Unlike Facebook, you chiming in on strangers’ conversations is not seen as creepy, but rather welcomed.
2. Meet people you couldn’t meet on the street. If someone really intrigues you on Twitter, don’t be afraid to just reach out to set up coffee. I’ve done this on multiple occasions and gained some pretty neat pals out of it.
3. Are you an employee or employer? Twitter is a great marketplace for both. The combination of one’s bio, website, and tweets serves as enough of a profile for prospective job/employee-hunting (so don’t forgo the bio/profile photo!).
4. Tweet with the trends. Is #ThatAwkwardMomentWhen trending? Seize the opportunity to put out your witty one-liner or insightful few words, then couple it with the right hashtag. Not only can this help you build your brand, but it’s also a great organic way to gain followers.
5. Participate in Twitter chats. Interested in cooking, education technology, and/or fashion? There’s a Twitter chat for that. Often these chats will be centred around the use of a predetermined hashtag, and occurs on a set day and time every week alongside a user who moderates it. Use tools like TweetChat or tchat.io to keep track of the conversations during the session. Twitter chats are a great place to meet, share, and learn from like-minded people in every industry and cause.
6. Follow people that interest you!
7. Use tools like Followerwonk to determine when the best times for you to tweet are.
8. Then, tweet during those times with social sharing tools like Buffer and HootSuite so that you can track down the analytics of your tweets. These tools are no longer just for big profitable companies to use; with the different account plans offered, they can be perfect for the everyday user too.
9. Use the search tool and its advanced searched function to find out about anything, anywhere.
10. When crafting tweets that begin with a username, make sure to include a period before it. Otherwise, only the people who follow both you and said user will be able to view the tweet in news feeds.
i.e. “.@leahebae just wrote something about Twitter.”

Let’s continue the conversation. Tweet me at @leahebae to get started!

This post was originally published on the Youzus digital marketing & PR agency blog. You can find it here.

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