Twitter is currently the 8th most visited website in the world.
The site ranks roughly 896,000 slots higher than mine (< shameless backlink to Feldman Creative dot com). So, as crazy as it might be to ignore my site, it's positively bird-brained to neglect Twitter. In the past 12 months, the number of adults using Twitter daily has doubled.
But the birdbrains are everywhere.
So you get to Twitter for the first time and you're asked your basic ID questions to get started. A few clicks later, you're following a handful of tweeps and then it's time to hatch your very own Twitter identity.
At this point you're being asked to upload a picture of yourself. You can't be bothered. Next, Twitter wants you to characterize yourself. Here's your big chance to create your Twitter profile, but you simply can't wait to tweet and you're thinking why would Beyonce ever pause to read your profile anyway. So you skip this step too.
You have just joined the high flying flock of Twitteratti whose identity is devoid of any character whatsoever and whose profile picture becomes the Twitter default: an egghead. There's millions of you out there.
Insert photo here.
The essence of Twitter is to engage with people with whom you share interests. And you're given the opportunity to create a profile for this purpose.
So start by putting your picture there. Not your family portrait. Not your pet. Your mug. I want to be able to recognize you. It's also wise to use the same picture across all your social media profiles.
But wait, you say, "Isn't it a branding opportunity?" Yes. Should you put your logo there? No. Put your picture there because your brand on Twitter is you. Okay, if you share a Twitter account with other users and will take turns speaking on behalf of your company, the company logo or some recognizable hallmark of the company probably is your best bet.
In your profile, you get 160 characters to characterize yourself. Use them wisely. Create a short biography with carefully considered keywords that describe your interests, so other users will find and follow you.
You can be entertaining, but of course, you'll need be economical. It's best to just be yourself. I love it when Twitter users toss in some random thought that helps me get who that person really is. I always notice when someone calls out they are a "rock and roller," "caffeine fiend," "Pez collector," or some quirky little glimpse into their life.
Twitter also allows you to put a URL in your profile, so unless you don't want traffic at your site (hellooooo?), put it in there. Or put in a specific landing page. Some website owners actually create a Twitter-only landing page. That's a cool idea, which says to me, "I value Twitter and I appreciate you."
Give the page a personality.
Another time-saving step that screams, "Twitter's not important to me" is the use the default page design or even the use of one of the premade themes offered by the host.
Strong Twitter pages feature an original background. Yes, creating one is going to take a half hour of your time or a small investment in putting a pro on the job, but it's time or money well spent. Your Twitter page can be a business center for you and neglecting to brand it is birdbrained. Kristi Hines spells out the ABCs of Twitter background design for you here in a good article at "The Daily Egg."
More traffic, followers and engagement.
I credit Kristi again for the subhead above because I couldn't have said it better myself. A number of things will affect how your Twitter experience plays out and many of them will take a little patience on your end. However, if your end-goal is to make Twitter part of your online marketing plan, there's no denying the vitality of traffic, followers and engagement. And if you follow me on that, I hope you'll also understand the difference between social media birdbrains and those who use the tools egg-traordinarily begins with a powerful and practical profile based on your personality.
Tweeps, help me out here. If you have ideas for establishing effective Twitter pages, please chime in. And find me on Twitter @feldmancreative.