I follow simple philosophy when it comes to using Twitter. I want my tweets to: Engage, Enlighten or Educate. This can be described as:
- engage – do something
- enlighten – feel something
- educate – learn something
To engage your followers you need to get them interested in taking some kind of action. Typically you would be trying to poll your followers or learn something yourself. Google recently bought Aardvark which is a service that allows you to post questions and get answers. The answers aren’t always great but they can help point you in certain direction.
Who doesn’t like a good laugh? Depending on your audience you could substitute Entertain for Enlighten. A funny joke, a cute picture, a great video. Those are examples of the kind of tweet that people enjoy reading. It doesn’t have to be heavy but it shouldn’t be empty. There has to be something in it for the reader.
It’s much easier to educate your followers in this context that you might think. All you need to do is share the link to a good story. Sharing links is a good way to demonstrate domain expertise. Let someone else do the heavy lifting of writing the story. All you need to do is point people to it. I suppose it also means you have to be on the look out for quality stories which isn’t as easy as it sounds.
There are a variety of ways to get a sense of what people are tweeting about. It is a good idea to look at these resources and get a feel for what your audience might appreciate.
- hashtags.org (a hashtag is a keyword proceeded by #, such as #gps)
When you are tweeting just remember to always make the tweet interesting to your audience. If you do that you will have success in keeping your followers.