Finding Your Place in the Twitter Universe

Twitter Universe

Image courtesy of mkhmarketing

It’s been four months since I started experimenting with Twitter. My initial plan was to just jump into the pool of “tweeple,” see if I could find some like-minded friends, and figure out how it works. Here are some things I’ve learned thus far.

People will be more likely to follow you, if your user name tells what you’re about.
I started on Twitter with my real name @JayaSavannah as my user name. As an initial account, it makes sense to use your name. Yet once I started getting followers myself, I noticed how much easier it was for me to recognize people when their user name reminded me. For example, you can tell at a glance what these friends of mine are about: @EducatedEsty. Also, people that only want to read tweets on certain topics will be more attracted and want to add you. So, unless you’re already a celebrity by your real name, it’s probably better to choose an on-topic handle. Besides, Twitter also lets you put your real name on your page underneath your @name, so there’s no confusion.

Don’t go into an etiquette crisis, following everyone who follows you.
I struggled with this at first. Socially, it seems right to follow your followers back. If someone bothers to find and follow you, it’s only natural to return the favor. However, a lot of Twitterers aren’t people at all–they’re robots that send out automated posts and automated direct messages. Their tweets flooded my page and my email in-box. I learned to be more discerning. Now, I take a moment to view their profile page and see if their tweets are authentic and relevant.

Don’t feel bad if someone unfollows you.
It’s part of the nature of Twitter that sometimes people will unfollow you. For whatever reason, they silently go away. That doesn’t much bother me, although there is one real life friend that unfollowed me. Ouch. Was it something I said? Do I over-post? I don’t know any adults on Twitter or Facebook who don’t get a pang of teenage-like angst once in awhile. Take a breath and let it go. It happens to everyone. You’ve still got friends.

It’s not a numbers game (at least not for me.)
As I started getting more followers, I also followed more people and gradually started getting overwhelmed. I genuinely wanted to read all the tweet updates, but it became impossible. I was only following a couple hundred people, compared to the tens of thousands of connections others have. How do they do it? Obviously, they aren’t reading. So what’s the point? It feels fake to me. I don’t do fake. There are lots of alleged “social marketing gurus” and “Twitter experts” on Twitter, constantly pushing their classes and affiliate programs. Maybe they’re making money with numbers, but I’m taking my eyes of numbers and looking for genuine faces in the crowd.

Breaking up is hard to do, but it frees you up for better relationships.
Give yourself permission to edit your following list to those people you are genuinely interested in. Make your own rules. I spend much of my time on-line for work, yet sometimes forget how much the quality of my experience is determined by me. To keep Twitter fun, I started putting in some boundaries and began unfollowing people who:

  • Post too often (more than 1-2x hour, and I max out.)
  • Only do one-way push marketing.
  • Never talk about anything but what they’re selling.
  • Post too many quote-of-the-days (write something original!)
  • Have garish avatars (obnoxious graphics give me a headache.)
  • MLM hype about their passive income, lifestyle, wealth (lies.)

If I sound persnickety, it’s because I learned the hard way. After I’ve made some cuts, I’m enjoying Twitter again. It should be fun, not just another business obligation.

I haven’t received very many emails from readers on the topic of Twitter. Is that because you’re not using it?
Does it seem like one more “marketing chore?” From my experience there, I’m not seeing very many holistic practitioners using Twitter yet. The ones that I do see are tending towards one-way push marketing (which I don’t think works.) There are many people tweeting beauty tips, which looks like it does work for the ones who engage in casual conversation, not just marketing. What’s your experience? Love to hear about it!

Wanna’ find me on Twitter? Here are my accounts.

@JayaSavannah Small business and holistic modalities.
@SacredElephants Elephants, elephants, elephants.


About the Author

Jaya Savannah - Chief Inspiration Officer. Strategy Coach for Holistic Businesses. Trainer, speaker, and writer. Spiritually aware, yet street smart. Elephant lover.