The other day someone asked me what the secret to Twitter was? Guess what, it’s the same as on LinkedIn, Facebook, and other social networking/media sites. Provide value to others and you will eventually benefit in return. Eventually might be right away or it might be a year from now.
On LinkedIn I can answer a question in depth, I can write a detailed recommendation, and post discussion questions and information in groups. In each I have time to lay out a set of facts and follow up with information to support the point or to share information.
On Twitter you can pretty much put a short statement out and that’s it. 140 characters doesn’t seem like a lot, but you can accomplish a lot with brevity.
The number one use I see in using Twitter is to share information. It might be a link to an interesting news article, it might be a quick answer, or it might be a link to one of my blog posts where I can provide valuable information.
For me that’s the value. I can capture attention and clicks to my site by writing a good headline tweet and directing people to my blog. The responder benefits from the information I share in my blog post. I benefit by adding blog visitors that hopefully find value and continue to return.
It all comes back to providing value. If I disguise a spam post as a legitimate post over time I’ll render my account worthless. That’s why you see a lot of the same links to spam posted by different “people”. Ever notice that the pictures normally all look like young models? Profile photo’s straight from istockphoto.
If I provide value though then my credibility is enhanced and the next time I post a link to a new blog post, I’m likely to get a return visit. Even better I may wind up with several retweets which helps spread my link and further increase traffic.
As a final word, I use Twitter for business purposes only. I don’t post that I’m enjoying a latte at Starbucks…who cares. Maybe if I were Chris Brogan that might be news. He’s built his brand and people are interested in whatever he does. People read my blog to know how to more effectively use LinkedIn and other social media. I know my place.
Think about why you are on Twitter, and if it’s a business purpose, act appropriately. Post Tweets that support your brand, provide value, share good information, and be yourself.
What do you think?
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