Your Road to Twitter Success in 6 Easy Steps

We have written some articles about how to grow your Twitter account to achieve Twitter success. Our assumption for these articles was that you are already present on Twitter and “just” want to know how to grow a targeted following and with it gain more traffic to your content.

Talking to some newbies on Twitter, I realized that there are some questions we need to answer before the actual growths process. Some steps you need for Twitter success, before you think of actively growing your account.

Twitter newbies: This is for you!

Click here to download our FREE Crazy Value Twitter Cheat Sheet. Prepared for a real client, real data, real expertise!

1. Choose a Twitter handle

I actually recommend using your real name – or your businesses name. Even though my own Twitter handle (@dreckbaerfrau) seems to contradict this, from today’s point of view, I would probably not choose this one again, but go for my name for the simple reason that branding me as a person is harder with a Twitter handle that at first glance has no connection to me.

You need to check, whether your chosen handle is already taken, if so (or if your name is too long for a handle) play around with the name a bit: Instead of SusannaGebauer, I could go for sugebauer or susannage.

2. Fill out your profileThe most important steps for Twitter success, before you can actively grow your account, like setting up your profile and showing you are no spammer.

Although your followers will not visit your Twitter profile every day, many people will take a look at your profile before they decide to follow you – or not to follow you. Thus the profile is important.

The first thing people see about you is your avatar. Do not keep the egg Twitter provides as a placeholder. People distrust eggs and are not as likely to follow them. Choose a nice and recognizable picture.

In addition your profile should provide some information on what your followers can expect from you: General area of interest, what you are going to tweet about, a link to your website.

For your own personal profile, you are allowed to give a glimpse at your personality. People love to connect to a person. Feel free to share some of your personality – this will also make your more real.

3. Follow some people

You are on Twitter for a purpose – even if that purpose is having fun or simply conversations. To connect and communicate with people on Twitter, you want to follow the people you want to connect to, so that their updates show up in your stream. I am not talking about hundreds of people here, but a chosen handful to start with.

People to follow can be friends, colleagues, experts in your field, magazines, and many more. At this stage it is not about following masses of people but rather about choosing some very interesting tweeps to fill up your Twitter feed.

4. Get some Followers

This is not about big numbers. It is about the first handful of followers. People will rather follow an account with a handful of followers than an account without any followers. The most common reason is that an account without any followers might easily be a spam account or an account that does not provide anything that makes this account desirable to follow.

Here are some ideas to gather the first few followers:

  • Ask your friends on Twitter to follow you
  • If you have an email-list – mention your new Twitter account in your next newsletter
  • Include your Twitter account on your blog and in your email signature

Do you want to learn more about using Twitter to build a business? Check out our comprehensive guide to Twitter “Grow Your Twitter Account Like A Pro!”

5. Tweet interesting stuff

Before people follow you, most of them will take a closer look at what you are tweeting. Why should anyone follow you, if your account does not provide anything of value. That can be sharing of interesting articles, statements, pictures.

Twitter is a perfect network for sharing links. If you yourself have not enough information on your site (blog), you are welcome to share links to other people’ articles, graphics, podcasts etc. In truth, especially in the beginning you should not just share your own content, spice it up with some articles from other authors you yourself enjoyed to read.

Make yourself interesting for others to follow by sharing valuable information.

I strongly recommend to concentrate on a handful of topics. If you tweet a broad mix of different topics, the chances are high that people will not follow you because you tweet too much information which is not of interest to them. Use the topics you tweet to determine who follows you: Choose your tweets so that people who are interested in your information are likely from your target group.

6. Start conversations and participate in conversations

Twitter is not about meaningless chitchat all the time. And it is not a one-way link sharing network. The best results you will get if people get more from you than just shared links: Your own personal views on discussed topics, a question or an answer: Join the conversation. As most social networks Twitter is about building relationships and especially when you are starting, joining the discussion is a nice and friendly way of getting on people’s radar.

How to pursue on your road to Twitter success?

To get these first steps right, you will need at least a few days – more likely a few weeks. If you master these you are ready to go for growth – we tell you how most influencers on Twitter grow their accounts in this article: Still Missing Out?! The Simple Twitter Growth Approach All Influencers Use

Click here to download our FREE Crazy Value Twitter Cheat Sheet. Prepared for a real client, real data, real expertise!

This article was proofread and edited by myself with the help of Grammarly. If you are blogging in English and cannot afford a professional editor, Try Grammarly Now! It rocks.

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  • http://www.julieinthemaking.com/ Julie in the Making

    Thanks Jonathon for a good post. I need to join some groups and get into discussions, I am still learning how to get them most from Twitter. Sometimes it’s finding the time to get into it.
    I did a Twitter experiment and published a funny post on my experience – How a novice went from 10 to 1700 Twitter followers in a Month – http://www.julieinthemaking.com/how-to-go-from-10-to-1700-twitter-followers-in-a-month-a-novices-experiment/
    Check it out I think you’ll enjoy reading it.
    Cheers Julie

  • http://about.me/bridgetmarshall Bridget Marshall

    Very good post. I agree with all the points you made. I will tell you my story as to when and why I joined twitter. Well I love hockey. the Montreal Canadiens were playing their first game but it was not televised in the US. This was back in September? Yea about then. I joined Twitter and followed the NHL..who instantly followed me back. Anyway I got to see updates on the game as it went on Twitter. From that day on I took and interest to that cute little blue bird. I did not go on a whole lot, than out of the blue I got hooked. 3 months ago I decided to pursue a career online. My first online job was with Amazon.com as an associate/affiliate. During that time, I was building my online presence..(key to make in the social media world). I went from maybe 20 followers, now at 671. I put hashtags in my profile and BOOM…they came. 671 is still not a huge following, again I’m still new to social media marketing. I do a lot of what you mentioned in your post..as of late a lot more. Ok this is turning into a book..I’ll stop here. Again great post!

    • TheSocialMarketers

      Hi Bridget,

      Thank you for sharing your Twitter-story! – I actually joined Twitter to be able to give our new company account a first follower. That was in 2010 and I did not really have any intention of actively using that account… I came a long way from there.

      I got a couple of hundred of my first followers by writing guest posts on large blogs like Jeff Bullas and mentioning my Twitter handle in the author bio.

      Good luck with building your online presence!

      – Susanna

      • http://about.me/bridgetmarshall Bridget Marshall

        Thanks!

  • http://www.trainwithcts.com Tamara Norris

    I would recommend if you are using Twitter as part of your branding strategy to keep your profile picture consistent among the various social media profiles you set up. It will help connect the dots for those who choose to follow you on multiple platforms and projects a consistent “brand image.”

    • http://about.me/bridgetmarshall Bridget Marshall

      YES! I just did all that a few days ago..all profile pics and cover pics are the same.

  • saraboulos

    Very good suggestion, thanks for sharing.