Twitter: If I Knew Then, What I Know Now…

I joined Twitter on 22nd April 2009. Facebook was all the rave back then but I had this friend who couldn’t stop talking about “Twitter”. I couldn’t wrap my head around why anyone would want to join another social network when Facebook was “IT”. So one day, this friend of mine made me promise that I would join Twitter on that particular dayโ€”even if I wouldn’t be activeโ€”then I thought, what the heck! I obliged. Fast forward to February 2010, I NEEDED to leave Facebook. This need to leave Facebook was up there with food, clothes and shelter. So I left Facebook. With no place to write my thoughts anymore, a void was created and that is when I got my aha! moment, I remembered my Twitter account and knew it was time to acquaint myself with it.

Looking back, it was one of the hardest things I ever did. It wasn’t as easy as using your email address to find friends who were already on Twitter. Maybe because most of my friends were not on Twitter then. So in case you are new on Twitter here are some things I hope will make your transition from other social networks a little smootherโ€”give you a soft landing. What I wish I could have found on “google” when I was starting my new life on Twitter.

Avatar aka Profile Picture: Look for a good avatar, be careful not to put an offensive one. You have higher chances of getting followers when you have an avatar than when you don’t. When you don’t put an avatar, Twitter puts an egg and that egg! o_O Enough said.

Twitter Bio: Take a minute and seriously think up something that describes you. The bio is so important, that it literally changed my life. That’s a private joke ๐Ÿ˜€ It’s that important!

Protecting your tweets: This is behavior that is carried from FB where only people you allow to see your tweetsโ€”see your tweets. Please don’t protect your tweets because when you try to interact with other people who are not following you, they won’t see your tweets. Happened to me, and it was very frustrating. Also many people hesitate to follow a protected account because who wants their request to be rejected?

Resist the temptation to follow celebrities: I think I followed not less than 200 international celebrities when I became active on Twitter. I was starry-eyed over the fact that it was the celebrities themselves tweeting the stuff I was reading on my phone!! Sooner or later you discover, it’s never that serious. Follow only those people that will add value to your timeline.

Choose who you follow wisely: This is based on what your interests are. If you like reading witty punchlines, sports, photography, blogs…follow someone who will give you that. Before you follow someone take time to look at their timeline.

Judge the tweep by their following versus follower ratio: If a person is following 1,000 people and they have 10 followers, they might not be a good follow-find. You might want to pass.

Follow Friday #FF: I got some of my best follow finds through Follow Friday. I hear they are outdated these days, but if you see a person you follow recommend a good follow, please be sure to check out their timeline.

Following: After you get good people to follow, they might not follow you back immediately. Be patient. There are people I followed for months, before they followed me back. You have to prove yourself first. On the flip side, take time to look at the people who have followed you and those that deserve a follow backโ€”follow. If there is a person whom you really want to follow you back, it doesn’t hurt to ask. I know I did. I #twoposed (Twitter-proposed) to an amazing tweep @cooxie02. She accepted ๐Ÿ™‚ #FF

Tweeting: Think before you tweet. Don’t flood people’s timelines. But don’t let people’s opinions shape your tweets. A very wise person once said, “tweet like no one is following”. At the end of the day it’s your Twitter. ๐Ÿ˜€

The Hash tag #: When you get on Twitter the first thing you notice is the hash tag (#). It’s a little confusing at first but you get the hang of it. Twitter newbies tend to misuse the hash tag. For example if I want to tweet that I have a new post on my blog:
Wrong way to tweet: New #Post on my blog. Correct way to tweet: #NewPost on my blog. ๐Ÿ™‚

Trending Topics #TT: These are FUN! Every day people on Twitter pick subjects that are trendy and talk about them. It’s amazing the amount of information you get from these hash tags. Sometimes if you write very interesting tweets, you get more followers. Win!

Mentions: When people talk to you on Twitter, all your tweets go to the mention section. It is good to read this section and reply to people who mentioned you on Twitter. The interesting observation I have made is that you may not feel like replying to all mentions however if you don’t reply to ALL mentions, people will un-follow you. It is impolite to ignore people when they talk to you. Sidebar: When mentioning someone be careful not to send offensive tweets. If you don’t know someone, don’t be acting like you know them and sending flirtatious messages. You will be ignored, even un-followed.

Direct Messages (DM): Respect the DM. Create a rapport with your follower before you start sending them random things on their DM.

Unfollowers: If you will get followed, you will also get un-followed as well. That must be the law-of-twitter. There is a whole range of reasons why people un-follow you. I will not get into those. It is good to know who un-followed you, so that you are not blind sided. Take time and add an application that will show you who un-followed you. I use this one. How I see it, if someone un-follows me, I definitely return the favour. You do me, I do you.

Whatever the case, be sure to enjoy your Twitter experience. Get a good Twitter Application. Beware of Twitter bullies. Allow yourself to explore the endless possibilities on Twitter.

If I knew then, what I know now, I would have gotten on twitter sooner than I did. I have made some of the most amazing friends on Twitter. Also, I have grown as a writer because of Twitter. Twitter has changed my life.

Yeah, I just said that!

Ps. Hope y’all like the new blog theme ๐Ÿ™‚

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  1. I always like to add that people will unfollow you for the strangest of reasons, so don’t take it personal ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Violet
    • November 21st, 2011

    Nice read Doll….

  2. very true, now follow me please

  3. This is a twitter guide! Good job fam!

    • nkirdizzle
    • November 21st, 2011

    I joined twitter just like a week before you, and I remember how much i lost syk because the feature for receiving sms notifications was not available in Kenya.
    It took me a while to warm upto twitter, I found out where my mentions were after a month lol
    Great post, and I so feel you on the doing you vyb ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Hahaha. I didn’t know what DM was and didn’t see them until very long. Oh those “good” old days. Thanks love.

    • savvy
    • November 21st, 2011

    I hope newbie tweeps can read this!

  5. great post. good advice for the jungle that is twitter!

    • If only to make it a little easier for the new-comers or less-active twam

    • boboshantism
    • November 21st, 2011

    reminds me of my newbie days…nice one missy

    • bellasbiz
    • November 21st, 2011

    Just discovered this blog…I like it. The twitter is man’s greatest invention since television!

    Pamoja!!!

  6. Indeed. It is said, “…the revolution will not be televised, it will be tweeted…” Welcome on board. Cheers!

    • Maina
    • November 21st, 2011

    1. No plagiarism. Always acknowledge the source.

    2. Do not flood people with links. There is only one person allowed to do that. Aly Khan Satchu.

    Nice post ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Thanks for the additions. Tweet jacking is a vise that is punishable by un-following. I agree only Aly Khan Satchu can be forgiven for the crime of RTing. Asante ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Tip: Eliminate @AlyKhanSatchu’s ReTweets – http://ow.ly/i/hLtK ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Tweet, and have a good laugh while at it!

  8. DMs do not mean that we’re tight; far from it.

    Nice post ๐Ÿ™‚

    • You know??? Like don’t be coming at me sideways telling me stuff you can’t say on the TL coz we ain’t know each other like that. Hehehe. Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Nice read.

  10. Just found out you been at my joint a few times
    Thank you for passing by when you did. Also thank you for keeping up with the blogging.
    Will definitely pass by again
    Basiks

    • Yo! Twas a pleasure going back to the basics ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for stopping by mines. Peace.

  11. Now I can log in that twitter account i created some three years ago, dust it and enjoy twitting! Thanks for this ‘know how’.

    • You will love twitter so much. Lots of brilliant minds on there. You are welcome.

    • Bruce
    • June 12th, 2012

    Its truly refreshing; it redefines twitter usage on a Daily!

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