Twitter is a great way for professionals to expand their networks and boost their reputations. Here are five tips to help individuals construct professional tweets that benefit, not hinder, their careers.
(Photo Credit: MDGovpics/Flickr)
Believe it or not, there is a right way and wrong way to tweet. The next time you want to fire off that tweet, ensure that you have considered the following five tips before hitting the send button.
1. Proofread your tweets. Double-checking your tweet before you hit the send button can help prevent you from potentially embarrassing yourself with possible misspellings, grammatical errors, or those infamously awful auto-corrections. It only takes seconds to proof your work, but it also takes seconds to ruin your online reputation with a careless tweet. Do your due diligence and double-check your tweet before sending it off into the Twitterverse.
2. Sharing is caring. Your goal is to provide your followers with relevant and thought-provoking information, such as breaking news, industry-related articles, and buzz-worthy news. Find that happy medium of self-promotion and being a curator for interesting stories — much like if you were to have a conversation with a group of strangers, they wouldn’t want to hear you talk about yourself the entire time.
3. Spark a conversation. The very best way to grow your professional audience on Twitter is by starting conversations that others want to either follow or be a part of. In other words, ask open-ended questions that encourage other Twitter users to participate or lend your professional expertise to conversations. There’s not really a secret formula to sparking a conversation on Twitter, but be sure that what you’re contributing is not rude or offensive. Like mother always said, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”
4. Not everything needs to be abbreviated. Twitter allows you 140 characters to get your point across, but that doesn’t mean that people want to read a bunch of abbreviated words that make little to no sense. Be sure to use as many complete words as you can and keep abbreviations to a minimum so that you don’t come across as a 2-year-old who got a hold of mommy’s phone and accidentally published a tweet. Rephrase your tweet or send two consecutive tweets if you have to.
5. Use hashtags, but don’t overdo it. Hashtags are intended to capture significant subjects, topics, or ideas within a tweet, and not to highlight every word. For example, if you’re compiling a tweet about an article that discusses women in business, then you may want to use the hashtag “#womeninbusiness” or “#workingwoman” to help drive traffic to your tweet. Think of hashtags as a way for others to find certain content by searching for specific hashtags or topics on Twitter. Limit the number of hashtags used in each tweet to one or two because anything beyond that seems desperate and unnecessary.
Bonus tip: Dennis McCafferty also has some great tips on creating professional tweets, and he provides another bonus tip on the “tweeting formula” in his post for Baseline Magazine: “A good standard for a tweet is: 80 characters for the message; 20 for the call-to-action; 20 for the link; 20 left blank to allow for retweets.”
Now go share your heart out on Twitter and be confident in providing your followers with content that will help boost their careers and knowledge.
Tell Us What You Think
What other ways do you ensure that your tweets are well-constructed and relevant for your audience? Share your pearls of wisdom with our community on Twitter or in the comments section below.