Do Your Twitter Followers Know Whether You Can Fog A Mirror?

Posted by Kevin Jorgensen

Feb 23, 2012 8:03:00 AM

In my previous post I shared some tips on becoming a hashtag master. Assuming you’ve started expanding your social media network with some really useful hashtags, what are you to do with all the new people you’ll be tweeting with?  (note, I did not use the word ‘to’!)

Remember, social media is a conversation, not a monolog. It’s important (necessary) that you listen as well as speak if you’re going to be truly successful in social media mirror reflection talkmarketing. Do you engage your followers? Do they even know whether you can fog a mirror or might you just be a bot pushing programmed information at them? It matters. Here are 10 simple tips for making your social media marketing come to life:

10 Tips to Let Your Twitter Followers Know You Can Fog A Mirror:

  1. Be sincere. Post a photo that doesn’t resemble a mug shot and reconsider using the pic of your dog catching the frisbee. Your dog is cute but give your followers an image of the person they’re tweeting with. Send the dog pic later - if necessary ;-)

  2. Speak in your own voice. Tweet with your followers as you would your friends and co-workers; people you’d carry on conversations with. Even in more formal B2B marketing, conversations are personal.

  3. Say thank you. Thank those who share your tweets, comment on your posts, or who answer your questions. It’s not only the right thing to do, it’s also a great conversation-starter. Even criticism of your opinion, product or service can create access to new relationships. As one of my customers reminded me recently, the real selling opportunity starts with the first objection!

  4. Use people’s names. Your name is the word you most like to hear. Reading it triggers your attention. Unless you are really tweeting with someone named reply, stop using the @reply click shortcut. Use the person’s name.

  5. Be patient. Do you ‘unfollow’ anyone that doesn’t respond promptly to you? If you’re interests for following this person are genuine, allow some time for them to respond. Not every tweet is an IM. Life can get in the way of the ability to instantly respond.

  6. Read bios. A research of someone’s bio can provide creative ideas for small talk – common interests (see dog pic above), your locale, employment, etc.

  7. Mention sources or authors. This may not seem important but it shows respect and also protects you from coming across as an aloof know-it-all. People will be more likely to engage with you as a peer and your conversations will be richer as a result.

  8. Check in from time to time. If it's been awhile since you've heard from one of your close followers or someone you regularly exchange with on Twitter, send an @reply just to let them know you’re thinking about them.

  9. Be authentic and honest. Admit when you’re wrong, even if it’s a simple error like misspelling a name or mis-using a word (I used the word queue when I should have used cue in a post and responding to the person who corrected me was a great way to begin a conversation). Your acknowledgment tweet will be much more authentic than simply removing the original and reposting in silence, hoping no one noticed.

  10. Ditch the automated validation service. These things are just plain not friendly. Imagine how you would feel if you were attending a party and asked to show your invitation before anyone would talk with you. Ouch! Be welcoming as a policy and use other means to block spammers.

These are my 10 tips for being more social on social media. What are yours? What’s worked well for you when you want to turn your Twitter experience from a monolog into a conversation? If you need help starting a social media policy manual for your school, business or non-profit, check out our handy social media policy guidebook.

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Topics: Inbound Marketing, Social Media

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