4 Timeless Twitter Tips That Will Make You Stand Out



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In my last article, 3 Tips to Rock Your Twitter Profile, I discussed how to make sure your Twitter profile put your best foot forward on the social network. Once you have left eggs and buzzwords behind, what more can you do to start building authentic connections on Twitter and stand out from the crowd? Twitter is swimming in a see of blue birds, all out there tweeting and wanting to be noticed. How can you be the red bird and stand out?

1. Avoid the allure of the auto-response DM (direct message)

Social networks are meant to be social and human.  If I think you are interesting and follow you and get a direct message a few seconds later that runs something like: “Thanks for the follow! You can buy my new book at” you are going to be immediately unfollowed. The value in social media is the social aspect of it. Be human. Auto-response DMs violates this. And do I need to mention you also don’t try to close a sale (Buy my new book!) on the first conversation with a potential client or customer? The auto-response DM is something that should be avoided – always.

2. Be Generous and Be Authentic

So much of social media is like the theory of karma: you get what you give. Unless you are the latest Hollywood celebrity sensation, if you only post your random thoughts, your followers will not grow and neither will your influence. Be generous in sharing content from others that you find interesting. Reply to questions, comment on posts, share your time with others.

Here is a great example: One day at work we were asked what we would do if we won a million dollar lottery. I said the first thing I’d want is a red Tesla Model S. A few days later a co-worker was in the Tesla showroom in San Jose and snapped a photo of a red Tesla and tweeted it to me asking if that was the car I wanted. It was a very generous engagement – she shared her Twitter post with me – it was authentic because she remembered I said I wanted a red Tesla. It was engaging because it was unexpected. So what did I do? I re-tweeted it and then replied back to her, continuing the share and good karma.

3. Be Aware of Re-Tweeting Gone Wild

While re-sharing content is important, spamming your followers and / or a hashtag with rapid fire re-tweets is a quick way to get yourself unfollowed or muted on Twitter. With the “Quote Tweet” feature, Twitter has allowed you to provide your opinion and thoughts on a tweet and help extend the conversation. It’s a great feature and one that brings your personality to the front vs just hitting the retweet button.

4. Be Human

It’s okay to post a picture of your dog, a flower you love, the race you ran the other day, or a view from your hike. I love the work I do, but I’m not wholly defined by my job. Allowing yourself to show up on Twitter as the unique person that you are allows others to connect with you and know you are not just a tweet bot. Years ago I silo-ed my work persona from the “real” me and truthfully – I was pretty darn boring on Twitter. When I began to relax that dividing line, I saw amazing results and had far more fun on social media.

And here is a bonus secret: All of these tips are geared to you bringing your best self to social media but the same rules apply to brands. Boring, stale, canned, or corporate tweets where Twitter is used as a megaphone is not the way to build followers and get noticed no matter who, or what, you are on Twitter. Be human, be authentic and stand out from the crowd and #BeTheRedBird.

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