Twitter is one of the top promotional resources for brands, bloggers, the president and even the pope to share news, pictures, videos, links and anything else that can fit into 140 characters or less. Twitter’s driving force is its ability to share news and information in real time, which is why even first responders and the police use Twitter to share up-to-the-minute information with the public.
For bloggers who aspire to turn their hobby into income, social networking is key to making that aspiration a reality, and Twitter can help you get there. Twitter is the second most popular social networking site behind Facebook, and its expansive networking capabilities can help you promote your blog to drive more traffic back to it.
Like all social networking sites, there’s some lingo to learn. Before we can break down what Twitter is and how you can use it to promote your blog, you’ll first need to familiarize yourself with some terms. Twitter’s website has a full glossary, but these are need-to-know terms to get you started:
Twitter: A free microblogging site on which you can share status updates, news, links and pictures, but your posts must be 140 characters or less.
Tweet: A message containing photos, videos, links and up to 140 characters of text. Tweets are shown in Twitter timelines or embedded in websites and blogs.
ReTweet (RT): A Tweet that you forward to your followers, often used to pass along news or other valuable discoveries on Twitter.
Twitter Handle: Your handle is your Twitter username, preceded by @.
Follow: Subscribing to a Twitter account is called “following.” When you follow someone, you’ll see Tweets as soon as they post something new.
Follower: A follower is a Twitter user who has followed you to receive your Tweets in their Home stream.
Hashtag: A hashtag is any word or phrase immediately preceded by the # symbol. When you click on a hashtag, you'll see other Tweets containing the same keyword or topic.
Mention: Mentioning other users in your Tweet by including the @ sign followed directly by their username is called a “mention.”
Reply: A response to another user's Tweet that begins with the @username of the person you're replying to is known as a reply.
Get a Handle
To get started, Twitter requires creating an account. The most important part of this is your Twitter handle so people can identify and find you. For example, Mom Bloggers Club’s Twitter handle is @mombloggersclub, which makes us easily identifiable to our followers and to those who seek us out. Your Twitter handle is how you are identified and mentioned on Twitter.
Bloggers often ask whether they should create social media accounts for their blogs that are separate from the personal accounts. There is no right or wrong answer to this question; it all depends on your goals for your blog.
If your goal is to be a professional blogger with a monetized blog, then you should have a separate Twitter account for your blog. There are a few reasons for this:
Promoting your blog through your personal Twitter account is encouraged and if you have separate accounts you should definitely cross promote, just keep in mind that what you post is a reflection of yourself and a reflection of your blog’s brand that you are cultivating.
Pump Up the Bio
Once you’ve created your Twitter handle, you can begin grooming your Twitter profile to keep it consistent with your blog and your other social networks. The following are what you should include to make the integration seamless:
How to Get Followers
Getting started on Twitter can make you feel like a wallflower at the homecoming dance. Bust these four moves to get noticed:
Tweet for Tips
Twitter isn’t just a one-trick pony; it can also help you with content creation, collaboration with other bloggers and legitimize your blog in your niche. Here are some ways you can use Twitter outside of Tweeting:
Tweet Like a Pro
With only 140 characters to get your message across, Tweeting isn’t exactly rocket science, but your Tweets can get lost in the mix. These tips will help your Tweets stand out:
Twitter is one of many useful resources for promoting your blog. If you think of blogging as a tree, the roots of the tree represent your blog, the trunk represents your content that grows more robust with each post, and the limbs are your social networks that reach out to the world to attract the birds, squirrels and other critters that represent readers, advertisers and sponsors.
Do you have more questions about using Twitter for blogging? Post your Twitter handle with your questions in the comments!