Over the past few months I have noticed some over eager business owners new to Twitter making credibility damaging mistakes. So, I thought I would highlight some of these errors and explain why they are a turn off to people and your potential clients on Twitter:
1. Hash tag spam
You see a great tweet, or want to positively influence a powerful Twitter user, so you decide to add a hashtag of something that is trending on Twitter. For example, adding a sneaky #apprentice during the TV programme for your new blog on tax regulations... This is a great way of heightening exposure for the tweet or peep behind the tweet... Or is it? Twitter, and social media in general, likes people to be open, honest and transparent, as this builds trust. So, tricking people into reading a tweet by including an irrelevant search term breaks trust and turns the tweet you altered into spam. The writer of the original tweet, inadvertently gets the blame for the spam tweet. I like many other business owners don’t want to be that writer...
2. Hijacking tweets
This is the practice of adding extra links (or hash tags) to a tweet after retweeting it. Whether or not these links or hastags are self serving for your practice, is not the point. You have altered the original meaning & intention of the tweet – and the original writer’s name is still attributed to the tweet. I don’t like my name being attributed to something I haven’t written, & I’m sure you wouldn’t either.
3. Purely broadcasting
Now everyone does a certain amount of broadcasting on Twitter – me included. After all, Twitter is my main driver of traffic to my blogs. However, as with everything in life, Twitter is all about balance. People want to know a little about you as a person and have a chat with you. They are generally not interested in a Twitter stream full of accounting speak or financial related articles. Unless you are a celebrity, people expect you to engage (i.e. prompt or enter into a conversation). So, have a look at all your tweets in the last 24-36 hrs. Is it all about your business or articles you think are good? Or are you talking to others and inviting others to join in the conversation? You wouldn’t dream of talking at your mates in a pub all evening? So, why do it on Twitter?
This is a difficult one. But, I’ve seen many enthusiastic new tweeters go onto Twitter and start selling. You know you are on Twitter (& social media) to generate new clients, so many people fall into the trap and start selling. It may only be pushing people to read your latest blog, but Twitter is an opt-in medium. People (much like clients!) don’t like to be sold to or told what to do.
5. Pushing a message onto you
I think I had exchanged one tweet with a corporate Twitter account & suddenly they messaged me asking me to help them achieve their goals with a link to click on. What happened to the small talk? Chat? Rapport building? Now, would you in only your second sentence at a networking event ask someone you have just met to help you achieve your business goals? No, I think not. Twitter is just the same as a face-to-face networking event. Build up the relationship first and then ask for help. No relationship = unwanted request
Have I missed anything from this list?