Twitter is one of those social media platforms you either get and love or ignore completely. Until recently, I ignored Twitter completely, only setup the account but didn’t spend time understanding it. Then, I started to tweet in hopes to have a larger impact and gain a bigger influence on an entrepreneurial journey of a person.
Within a few days it seemed that I had cracked the Twitter code and was on my way to becoming the influencer I set out to be. Soon my tactics and strategy bombed on me. I began to lose the few followers I had gathered and my initial enthusiasm began to dwindle. However, I was persistent in learning from my mistakes and at my 1000th tweet looked back to see the errors I made so that you don’t have to.
1. Not Sticking To One Topic
Part of being an influencer or a thought leader in one topic is to dive deeper in that topic than most people. Simple, I know, but I began to tweet about everything from leadership to design to photography and clothing. I was tweeting about everything I liked. A sure way to lose momentum on twitter is putting quantity over quality.
2. Not Keeping The Audience In Mind
This was and sometimes still is my biggest mistake. In our world of me, me and me, I fall victim to this more often than I like, but am working hardest on improving this. I am beginning to see Twitter from the eyes of the person who is going through their Twitter feeds. Are my tweets too often and all over the place? Am I making any clear point about any topic or influence I?
Not keeping your audience in mind will soon leave you tweeting only for yourself. I’m sure you will not enjoy it either.
3. Long Tweets
Twitter is a unique platform and has a unique feature about only allowing us to post 140 characters per tweet. if we are to succeed on it we have to understand how it works. Most of the tweets I was sending out didn’t keep that in mind. I would max that out almost every single time. A little tip I learnt, keep about 20-30 character left at the end of each tweet, it give a person to re-tweet it with their name or opinion in it. However, Twitter seems to be changing that soon, how this impacts them is still yet to be seen.
4. Tweeting Too Much Or Too Little
Not only was I tweeting about everything, I was tweeting about them in short bursts with long breaks in between. I send links to all the articles I was reading while reading them. So, in a matter of 30 minutes I was sending out 3-5 and sometimes 10 articles. A little spammy, considering I get really annoyed with in a span of 5 minutes there are 15 tweets from the same person. Usually a sure sign to annoy and lose the audience you are trying to build.
5. Complete Automation
After I realised bursts of tweets was having a negative impact on my Twitter growth, I decided to do something about it. In my research I found Buffer. Hands down one of the best apps I have used. Buffer helps schedule your tweets in advance at a predetermined times and links with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and others. So now, I could schedule tweets to go out at predetermined times keeping a fair gap between them. Buffer saves me a lot of time and stress in managing my social media account. That is the good news, the bad was that I thought Buffer would save the day. Buffer is amazing, but I didn’t follow up with the people engaging with the content I was putting out.
Automating social media posting is good, but the human interaction after that is more valuable.
6. Not Being Social
Following up on the complete automation is not doing what social media is all about, being social. This goes with any social media platform. We have to engage with our tribe, talk to them, and build stronger relationships. In my case actual human follow up was never done, or done inconsistently. I didn’t dedicate time to actually interact with the people who responded to my tweets. Not thanking them, or even checking to see if I could connect with them in the future. Big mistake!
7. Under Utilizing The Power Of Hashtags
Hashtags are a powerful feature of Twitter if used correctly. Initially coming over from Facebook, I never thought much about them. Then started to use them sparingly in some of my tweets and got some great results. One or two relevant hash tags in the tweet seem to give me great results.
8. Not Using The Trending Hashtags
Twitter informs you of the trending hashtags. Gives us an opportunity to jump in the major conversation people are already having. Till recently I didn’t even know that those can be changed to a location of our choice. Changing them can give us better insights on the topics we should talk or at least ask our audience about. The mistake I made was not seeing the trending hashtags when tweeting, missing the opportunity to join the conversations my audience was probably engaging in. Another mistake I made was hoping to use trending hashtags for business promotions, rather than looking at them as relationship building opportunities. Using the trending hashtags only for promotions didn’t lead to any promising leads.
9. Not Using The Search Function
This is my new discovery of Twitter. Twitters search function is amazing; it lets to search for relevant topic, hash tags giving us the opportunities to connect with our audiences. Again like the trending hash tags, I used this primarily for sales and not for relationship building. If done correctly, this can get us in front the audiences that are facing problems we are waiting to fix.
10. Always Only Business
Another one I still struggle with is talking only business. Talking about social media, productivity, leadership, investing and growing ourselves gets me excited, so I tend to share news article and interesting things I find about these topics. I am still new to the world of Twitter and still figuring out the right balance of personal and professional content that works.
In the end whether it is Twitter of any other social media platform, the ultimate goal is to become a thought leader in a particular niche and build a tribe of people who want to engage with you or your brand. As long as we focus on value, something I still get wrong from time to time. I am okay with making mistakes, because we learn more from the mistakes than the wins. In the end we have to use social media platforms to build relationships. Ignore vanity numbers and focus on relationships. Focus on serving our audiences to our best ability.