Last week we gave our attention to Facebook, and this week we’re going to get our feet wet with Twitter.
As we’re sure you’ve heard, Twitter is a micro-blogging tool that allows you to post 140-character messages about whatever you want. In addition, you can chat back and forth with others, post links to great resources and share your expertise. In fact, superstar blogger Chris Brogan has 50 Ideas on Using Twitter for Business, a post we guarantee will open your eyes about the tremendous value Twitter can have in your marketing and business strategies.
Today, whether or not you believe Twitter has any merit at all, we want you to go ahead and set up a Twitter account. It’s really easy, and we’ll walk you through the process. If you’d rather skip the reading, you can watch this short video How to Set Up Your Twitter Account.
1. Go to twitter.com and register your account. Choose a username that reflects your brand but that isn’t too long, since the letters of your Twitter name will count as part of the 140 characters if someone is trying to talk to you.
2. Once your account is set up, you’ll want to personalize your profile, so look at the black bar that runs across the top of your new Twitter screen and click on “Profile,” and when you reach the next screen, click on “Edit My Profile…” near the top of the page.
3. You can explore the various tabs, but you’ll definitely want to click on the “Profile” tab again, because this is where you can upload your photo and fill in the information that will help people connect with you.
4. When selecting a photo, choose on that fits your personal brand (professional, or artsy, or avant-garde, or fun, or whatever), but remember that the people you’ll be meeting on Twitter will associate this image with you, so make sure it fits the image you want them to have.
5. When you write your bio, you only have a few words, so choose a combination of words that make it easy for people to search and find you based on what you do (plumber, designer, teacher, etc.) but that also gives a taste of your personality. You’ll be able to search others’ profiles for ideas, which we’ll talk more about later this week. Here’s a great post from Jay Baer of Convince and Convert on how to compose a dynamic Twitter profile.
6. Once you finish with the Profile tab, go to the Design tab where you can customize the way your Twitter page looks when people click on your @name to find out more about you. You’ll see that you can choose different backgrounds, and can even upload your own image to use as the background. If you want to put your logo or a picture of your business in the background, go for it! Later, once you make an educated decision about whether Twitter is a good fit, you can even develop a custom Twitter landing page, which is more involved than we want to get into here.
We realize that setting up your account is just the first step, but it’s enough for today. Tomorrow we’ll show you how to take the next step to getting more comfortable on Twitter. If you have questions now, though, we’re always happy to help, so leave us a comment!