By: @Garin Kilpatrick
If you ever wanted to know what the traits of highly successful Twitterers you’ve come to the right place. The 10 Golden Rules of Twitter will help make you a Twitter success by modeling the masters.
Brian Solis, Chris Brogan and myself engage with the following Twitter tactics on a daily basis, and you will find most if not all of them exhibited by any successful social media guru. Apply these strategies to your own Twitter presence and your following will start to really grow.
You get out of Twitter what you put in to it so invest time into networking and engaging on a daily basis and the good karma that you build will compound and come back to you in time!
1. Reciprocity is Key
Follow and be followed, Retweet and be retweeted, follow and be followed. You have got to give in order to get, and the more time you are willing to invest in others the more likely they are to give you the time of day. Reciprocity is a powerful thing, and the main reason for the 255,000 followers I have currently, and the 400,000+ followers I have been able to build for the various accounts I have managed.
Once your network grows to several thousand followers don’t let it get to your head, I try to respond to everyone who is not an ass that sends me an @mention, and I even respond to some of the asses. Haha, but seriously this is key if you want to build a big brand and a strong network. Look at any Twitter giant and you will see that they have thousands and thousands of tweets and many are conversational. You’ve got to talk to people to really connect with them, it’s just that simple.
2. Schedule Your Golden Tweets
Twitter traffic varies throughout the day, and throughout the week. The busiest time on Twitter is at the end of the work day, between 3-5pm. Weekdays are far busier than weekends, and Thursday and Friday are the busiest days of the week. If you have solid content tweet it out when it can have the greatest impact.
Take a note from the most retweeted tweets of 2010 to get an idea of what works.
The golden tweet of 2011 shows that offering an incentive for retweets works. I have used a tactic similar to the Wendy’s tweet below to net over 100 retweets.
RT for a good cause. Each retweet sends 50¢ to help kids in foster care. #TreatItFwd
— Wendy’s (@Wendys) June 15, 2011
In 2012 the most tweeted tweet of the year, and of all time, was from Barack Obama with his election victory tweet “Four more years.”
3. Twitter Tools are Best Thing Since Sliced Bread
Of course I have a bias having written the Twitter Tools Book, but Twitter Tools really are the bomb. From Hootsuite, to Manage Flitter, to Twitter Marketing Software, to TweetDeck (which just sold for $30 million), and the list goes on.
By learning how Twitter Tools can work for you, you will give yourself a competitive advantage over millions of others who neglect these powerful tools.
4. List Liberally
These days people tend to pay more attention to the people who list them than the people who follow them. Some people recklessly auto-follow people, and this I do not recommend, but it still happens and these robotic follows devalue the action following someone. To really get someone’s attention the best way is to talk to them, and listing is a powerful method as well.
Create lists for your different interests, for example I have a runners list, an entrepreneurs list, and a Twitter Tools list. Tweet about your lists and there is a good chance that people will follow them. If your list gains enough followers it will gain greater visibility in list directories like Listorious.
This tip is straight from my friend Brian Solis, and it has worked exceptionally well. Brian has a massive network at this point and yet he still responds to every comment on his blog and to comments on his Facebook walls and on Twitter. This takes plenty of effort but it is the reason why Brian has so much influence. To learn more about this method I recommend that you grab a copy of Brian’s book Engage!
6. Relationships Take Time
Relationships are not instantaneous, the take communication and sharing over time. To build deeper relationships with people you meet on Twitter it might make sense to connect with them on Facebook as well.
To facilitate Facebook connections I created a custom design for my Twitter background that features a link to my Facebook profile. On my blogs I try to respond to anyone who leaves a comment if it makes sense to do so. If they have a blog as well I might take a minute and visit it to return the favor.
7. Add Value
This point has been key to my success on Twitter, and my ability to achieve thousands of retweets. Even if you are not an avid content creator you can still add serious value by sharing awesome content.
Use Twitter Lists to create streams of people who share the best information and then share the best content that they share. Browse the biggest blogs to find the best content and create lists of epic content. The more value you are able to add the more people will people will realize that you are a valuable person to follow!
8. Don’t Focus on Selling
Everyone likes to buy things but no-one likes to be sold. Twitter is a place to build relationships, and if you focus on doing that people will click your links and look for products that you have to offer. Focus on the connections and the cash will flow.
9. You are Your Brand
Resist the urge to use your profile picture as your avatar. You are your brand, so act respectable if you want respect. Try not to spam Twitter will dozens of Tweets in as many minutes. I tend to tweet about one tweet an hour, sometimes a little more, sometimes much less. Conversational tweets don’t count, as they are only seen by people who are following both people tweeting.
10. Remember that Twitter is Still a Baby
Although Twitter is a household word at this point it is still only about 5 years old and it’s only been mainstream for less than two. This means that there are still epic developments to come. By having knowledge about the latest and greatest tools and tips you will be ahead of the curve and you will be able to skyrocket your Twitter success. Sign up for our free Twitter Course and we will let you know about our latest articles when they go live.
Leave a comment below and let me know what you think of Twitter’s Golden Rules!