Okay, I’ll admit it; this may be a bit of a rant, but if you will take the time to read it, you may get a laugh or two along with some tips on Twitter.
And, like the commands in God’s book, if you will follow them your Twitter-life will get better. So, whether you are a believer or not, strap your seatbelt tight and let’s go.
Thou shalt use a profile pic
Show some respect for yourself and your own dignity, if you have any.
Am I the only person whose nerves chafe at the sight of that pathetic looking egg?
Would you take anyone serious if your only image of them was a white two-dimensional egg hemmed in by a colored box?
Think – why are you on Twitter in the first place?
At the bare minimum, you want to share trashy tweets with your old college pals. In that case, do you really want them seeing you without your yolk? Take five minutes and show them what a badass you are (if you are a guy). Steal some pics off the internet like I did these.
If you are a girl make it sweet, sexy or both, just not trashy.
You have something to promote or share. Everyone does. Out of the 974 million existing Twitter accounts, there is someone interested in what you are selling or giving away, even if it’s only your opinion.
If you want a better than 1:974,000,000 chance of gaining followers that are interested in you or your product,
GET A DAMN PROFILE PIC.
When I am sorting through the people that have followed me and deciding whether they are interesting enough to follow back,
I immediately exclude profiles with no pic.
Even if it just has to be a picture of your cat, dog, or giraffe in the newest sweater you knit for them,
I will consider following you.
But if there is no profile pic, your race is over. You never made it out of the gate.
Thou shalt show your Bio
Write a Bio.
Write a Bio.
Oh, did I repeat myself?
Make yourself or your product sound interesting even if it’s concrete railroad ties. You only have 160 characters to do it.
No profanity. Put it in your posts, seeing it in your bio makes me wince and pass you by. I am not alone.
Tell the truth. Stretch the hell out of it all you want to, just don’t break it.
Tell us who you are. My Bio says more than it says. I’ve worked a long time on it and am still tweaking it to perfection.
I have lived as an Outlaw, but also a missionary.
Throughout the ‘70s and ‘80s, I was a motorcycle outlaw living on the fringes of society. From 1990 up until a few years ago, I was a missionary to the inner city and I traveled to other countries as an evangelist.
Today, I have published one book and write stories, all fictional tales that draw pictures of truth.
I am a social media curator guru. I currently curate twelve accounts. Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
GURU is a stretch, but I have done well.
Include relevant well-known hashtags.
Use only hashtags that you deserve or have a right to.
Include a link or two pointing to your blog, website, Facebook, Smashwords, a link to your product.
Thou shalt make a discernable header pic
Make it sharp, make it fit. Make me sit up and take notice.
Don’t cut off people or animal’s heads and other body parts, unless, of course, it is relevant to your genre. I.e. horror or zombie stuff.
Use a high-resolution photo or graphic. No pornography or anything close. No profanity. It’s a turn off even for people that use lots of it. Seeing expletives in a header or bio makes us wince and pass you by.
This template is 730 x 205, but I’ve found the using a 3:1 ratio on a higher resolution image and respecting the invisible areas will give you better results.
Thou shalt Tweet MORE of your own stuff.
Leave more than a breadcrumb trail of original posts.
Here’s the deal. You have been kind enough to follow or retweet my post, so I go to your timeline looking for something of yours to retweet. In your last 100 posts, all I see is retweets of other posts. I really would like to promote your stuff. Really.
Don’t make me work so hard to find your original tweets.
Thou shalt not automate your timeline
If it’s too easy or too cheap…
Sure it’s easy to turn over your account to a bot that retweets the tweets of people who interact with you, but it’s phony. It looks phony, and it smells phony.
Don’t use automated services such as Round Team. Everyone knows it and if they don’t, every so often there is a tweet that says, “So and so is sitting home watching TV while our computer tweets all the stuff you’re responding to. So and so is a big phony.”
What kind of friends do you want? Ones that have no choice because you hired them or people genuinely interested in you?
I have a high respect for the people I meet on Twitter.
My profile has a high percentage of organic followers that I grew by my own actions. They are appreciated and in turn I am valued by them.
Thou shalt not buy followers
Need I explain? See Commandment Five.
Thou shalt respond and do it quickly
This is the surest way to grow your account. As your account grows upwards of 10,000 followers it becomes a lot of work to follow up and reply to them all. Every day I set aside time to get to as many as possible. I also have tricks I use to make the chore easier.
I have been rewarded by over 10,000 followers and a Klout score of 61. 63 puts a person in the top 5%. Klout is the measure of how well people interact with your account.
Thou shalt keep your posts fresh
If you are selling something, intersperse your promotional tweets with items of interest, quotes, news, photos, and special events. The pros say to use a ratio of 80 interesting posts and 20 promotional posts. The 80 can include retweets.
Thou shalt utilize the ‘Pinned Tweet’ for your own damned good
Promote your best stuff at the top of your timeline. On your tweet, click the three dots to open up a menu and select pin tweet.
Change it regularly.
Not using this feature is the same as shooting yourself in the foot.
Thou shalt use images in your posts and format them correctly
Any image as long as it’s sized to the correct ratio of 2:1will show up in its entirety in the timeline. Any other size looks stupid and only shows a partial picture.
The best size image is 1024 x 512.
I make sure that after my text in the post I have 31 characters remaining; 24 for the image and a seven-character margin so when the post is retweeted the post won’t be truncated.
These are all things I learned along the way. They are what I consider the big ones. Profiles that violate these commands appear like …