Twitter is a micro-blogging website that has established itself as one of the most popular social platforms currently available on the internet. With a message limit of a hundred and forty characters, it has revolutionized the concept of social interaction. It has distinguished itself as the real time medium of the current generation. Truth be told, the majority of the population gets their information from Twitter on almost all forms of current events. The effect of all this has been that Twitter has established itself as a social universe of repute. This continued growth of the number of interactions on the platform has attracted business attention.
With a hundred percent increase in the number of monthly active users from 100 million in 2012, it has grown 200 million in 2013. This represents a staggering congregation of the masses on a single platform where information distribution and interaction are effortless. With the average Twitter user following about six brands and more than 77% of users likely to retweet a brand they like, this social platform has become a tool that businesses cannot afford to ignore. This has led to a situation where every business now has created its own Twitter account. The challenge has been that the relative newness of this platform has left many business users unaware of the rules of etiquette on the platform. As with any other scenario, there are rules of engagement that users must adhere to in order to be successful.
To help you out, here are the 10 commandments of successful Twitter use:-
1. Mind Your Manners
Twitter is a new tool for interaction, but the same old rules of social interaction apply. This is more so compounded by the fact that Twitter has chosen to take a conversational approach to blogging. This means if someone tweets you, you are expected to tweet back, do not ignore tweets, direct messages, and respond in a respectful and helpful manner.
2. Tweet Only When You Have Something To Say
Constant tweeting is considered to be bombardment by spam, and users do not sign up for that. Each tweet should have some actual value. The mode of your tweeting should also be consistent. If you need to tweet a lot because maybe you are live-tweeting an event, have the courtesy to inform your followers prior. This is not only polite, it enables them to accommodate you for that period.
3. Do Not Pretend To Be Something You Aren’t
The tweeting masses dislike evidence of hypocrisy and any signs of disingenuousness on your part will get you unfollowed very quickly.
4. Be careful What you Tweet
Controversial topics, harsh language, inappropriate statements, and pictures are a NO-NO. You do not want to get the negative attention which can destroy you or your brand in a single fell stroke.
5. Choose Whom You Follow Wisely
Show me your friends and I will tell you what kind of person you are. This cliché mantra holds true in the Twitter-verse. Choose wisely means avoid following people who attract the wrong kind of attention. For a business, avoid politicians because that effectively alienates a substantial section of the market.
6. Do Not Steal
Plagiarism of tweets is theft, and it will be discovered. That is why Twitter has a retweet function.
7. Do Not Oversell
Remember, this is a conversation you are engaged in. It is annoying to your followers if every other tweet is pushing product or similar agenda.
8. Do Not Conceal Your Identity
Social media platforms come with partial anonymity but do not grant yourself the luxury as you cannot afford it. Have the correct name and clear contact details if you intend to use your account for something useful.
9. You Must Respect The Hashtag
A hashtag is used to create a conversational thread between different Twitter users in a public community setting. Avoid hash tagging everything you say, and only use it to help certain vital information easy to find or part of a conversation.
10. You Must Write Professionally
The world is watching, and your writing portrays an image of you and your brand. Do so in a professional manner for best results.
In every interaction or conversation, there is always a chance that things may escalate into an argument or confrontation. If such happens, you have the most to lose, as opposed to some nondescript user, therefore, walk away.