This isn’t just about “how to use Twitter.” This piece is about how to form genuine connections on Twitter (the kind that result in friends, and yes, maybe sales).
Many people struggle to form genuine connections on Twitter, partly because the social network allows only brief communication. It takes time to train our minds to communicate clearly in 140 characters or less. But Twitter can be a fantastic place to meet people, build relationships, and network online.
If you’re looking to optimize your use of Twitter and start forming genuine connections, it’s important to have a few things in place first.
YOUR FOUNDATION STEPS
- Know who your ideal connections are. Your ideal connections on Twitter (and other social networks) are your ideal clients and your ideal JV parters. These are the people you want to be looking out for online, and you need to have a clear idea of who these people are so you can easily recognize them on social media.
- Know your keywords. Get clear on the best search terms that people will use to look for someone like you online, so you can use these keywords and phrases in your social media bios. You’ve really got to hone it down to the top keywords for Twitter, but it’s important to clearly express who you are in your bio.
- Know what you want from Twitter. Set clear objectives for your Twitter use so you know exactly what you want. Do you want to create brand awareness? Build your network? Get signups to your list? If you don’t know what you want, then you won’t be able to work toward it.
Great! Now that you’ve got your foundation in place, it’s time to start forming genuine connections on Twitter. It’s really easy once you know who you want to connect with and what you want to get out of using Twitter for business.
7 WAYS TO FORM GENUINE CONNECTIONS
- Create lists. Make your Twitter use easier by creating lists of the people you most want to keep track of. Your lists can be public or private, and it makes it easier to break down the people you’re following into smaller groups.
- Help others first. We often ask for help on Twitter, whether it’s retweeting our tweets or spreading the word about our new launch. Start out by helping others first: retweet interesting tweets from the people you want to get to know better. Send them a shoutout using the #FF (Follow Friday) hashtag to recommend that others check them out and follow them.
- Give thanks. Whenever people lend a hand by retweeting your own things or sharing about something that you’ve done, be sure to thank them via a quick tweet. And then be on the watch for ways you can return the favor and help them out, too. (Hint: create a Twitter list for this to make it easy.)
- Engage. Use your lists to hone in on the people you want to get to know, and strike up a conversation with them. Comment on one of their tweets, ask them a question, or send them a message.
- Reply. Be sure to tweet back to people who strike up a conversation with you. Feel free to ignore auto DMs (direct messages), as they’ve been automatically generated, but when someone takes the time to tweet to you, it’s important to reply.
- Check in daily. If you’re looking to form genuine connections on Twitter and really get to know people, you’ll need to check in every day. It’s hard to keep a conversation going if you only respond to people once or twice a week.
- Get personal. Don’t make it all about business; mention bits from your personal life, too. People used to make fun of Twitter being about what you had for breakfast, but do feel free to tweet things that you’re really passionate about in your personal life. It adds a human side to your tweets and makes it more personal.
ONE LAST BIT OF ADVICE
Follow them elsewhere. Search on other social networks for the people you really want to get to know better and follow them there. Connecting on multiple platforms can help to build a relationship…especially if you’re a really visual person and you can follow them on Instagram or Pinterest. Connecting with people on multiple social networks can add new layers to the relationship and make it easier to get to know people.
TAKE ACTION TODAY
- Get clear on your foundation steps: who your ideal connections are, what your top keywords are, and what your main objectives are for using Twitter.
- Next, start implementing the seven steps I detailed above. Try focusing on a new thing each day for seven days, and then evaluate your results after the seven days are up. See what works best for you, and plan to do more of that.
Holly Worton helps coaches and women in heart-centered businesses go from confusion to confidence with social media, so they can use it to build relationships online and get more clients. As a heart-centered business owner, you do amazing work, and Holly wants to help you help more people. The way to do that is through Connection, and social media is one of the best ways to connect with others and build your tribe. Sign up for her free 90-minute social media training at SociallyHolistic to start building connections online. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, YouTube, or Instagram.