Since I have a lack of all-things-writing to post about and have been witness to some grave misuses of my beloved Twitter lately, I’m dedicating my next two posts to the Do’s and Don’ts of Twittering for those not already in the know.
** Disclaimer: These notes are based on fictional tweets; therefore the owner of this blog is released from any wrongdoing or hurt feelings caused as a result of any similarities to a reader’s tweets - real or imagined**
Before getting started, I want to stress that -- despite what you may have been told elsewhere -- Twitter is meant to be used as a form of entertainment! People who take it too seriously just don’t “get the point”. Okay, so here we go.
- Take the time to tweet about the humorous, frustrating, embarrassing, scary, etc. things that happen when no one else is around to share in it. The more “You’re not going to believe what I just saw (heard/ran across)” type tweets you post, the more entertaining others are likely to find you.
- Pictures! We luvs pictures! Stumbled across a really bad cross-dresser in Starbucks? A FedEx worker signing for a UPS package? A highway sign for “Cocksville” that makes you giggle like a middle schooler? Snap a picture and tweet. Give someone else the chuckle you’ve just had.
- Keep your tweets as free of TEXT SPEAK as possible. I know you only get 140 characters at a time, but constantly seeing UR instead of Your, or 4evr instead of Forever are … well, they’re annoying as hell. Seriously. Don’t do it.
- Mix it up and keep it fresh. Think of that friend you have that always talks about the same thing every single time you see him/her. Gets annoying, right? Avoid being THAT friend on Twitter. Update about all different sorts of things. If you only ever talk about what you had for breakfast, pretty soon people are going to start skipping your tweets or worse *gasp* stop following you!
- Use the # (hash tag) at times to make it easier for others who enjoy the same thing to find you. “#AmericanIdol hasn’t been the same since that crazy Paula left” or “To hell with what everyone else thinks, #VanillaIce was cool. Dammit." (#iamwriting is a popular one amongst our kind).
- Let other tweeters know you’re reading, by responding from time to time. If their tweet makes you want to say something to them, just hit “reply” and do it! (That being said please don’t become a celebrity stalker. There is no excuse for sending a “Hi, I’m having a wonderful morning today. How about you?” message to Nicholas Sparks, every day, because he was nice enough to respond to you once when you complimented his latest story.)
So there we go. By no means is this a comprehensive list of successful DO’s on Twitter. But if you’re a full out newbie, or otherwise miserably lost, it will at least get you started in the right direction. ;o)