Tweet, tweet, hashtag, retweet, follow, Follow Friday...what on earth is all the new buzz lately? Many of us have heard about Twitter and may have seen a tweet or two from a celebrity. Obviously, that is not a social media outlet for us. Most of us have Facebook pages for ourselves and some of us have even dabbled into a Page in Facebook for our companies.
The majority of the people I met at a networking meeting last night said they have heard of Twitter and set up the account,but it lay dormant. To me, that is like setting up a great candy shop,but always having the sign on the door say ,"Closed."People walk by, look in ,but can't access what you have to offer. If you set up an account, you better be ready to move ahead. People or companies can search for your company or topic of business and find you-it does not bode well to have a dormant account.
Let's get started! It is not scary at all-many teens have gone under their parents' radars and set up accounts already! Here are the basics to start up!
1. Create a profile-add a picture of yourself or your business logo. Experts say that the biggest mistake you can make is to have the "egg" that is the go to pic stay up on your account.
2. Be concise,but tell the world all the great things about your company and you. Come on-this is your chance to brag! Step up and go for it.
3. Add hashtags ( #) in your description of your company. For example, we are a #nonprofit for #families with #hearingloss. Anyone who searches for the word " nonprofit" , " families" or "hearingloss" will stumble upon us;)
4. Start searching for people to follow. In the # area on your phones or the Discover on your computer, you can type a topic-if you are a pet owner, type "cats", "dogs", "pets" ,etc. or if you are a singer/songwriter, type " songs", "music,",etc. Make it specific. Type the city you live in. You will find tons of options-there is a section called "Tweets" that will show when people use that in their tweets. Also,there are people .. go to people and find people you think will match your mission and follow them.
5. You can then send them a tweet- You use the " @" in front of their name ( @communconnect) and type a SHORT message- @communconnect pls follow us -we are a #nonprofit ,too!
6. When you find out someone is following you, thank them. You don't have to follow back if they are not someone you feel is a good match.
7. You can RT (retweet) a message to your followers by hitting retweet. ALWAYS thank a person/company when they RT.
8.The biggest thing is to ENGAGE with your tweeps( tweet peeps!), not just RT! You want to RT and send a message out there; " GReat advice RT@thelangaugemom" . You want to show the other folks you are truly interested.
9. Important to mention are crazy spammers-you might be followed by some lurid folks-fast and easy to tell by their profile pics or website names-there is an arrow next to the "follow" sign; click it and you will see "report" and "block". Do both!
10. Have fun and let me know what your first tweet is ! Follow us at @communconnect! Happy tweeting!!
Allison Schley has been in the field of deaf and hard of hearing education for 20 years. She founded a nonprofit for families with hearing loss. She most recently wrote a children's book, entitled Forever Friends. This book shows the how a deaf dog and deaf boy teach the world that all kids are good and being deaf is okay.