Do you have a Twitter Plan? I don’t – but when Nicole Nicolay (@nik_nik) from My Tech Opinion told me about hers I asked her to write it up as a post. It won’t be for everyone but for those who like a little structure – a Twitter Plan might help. Here’s Nicole’s tutorial.
Is there rhyme to your twitter reason? Do you have a plan when it comes to your tweets, or are you a spontaneous tweeter? Believe it or not, there can be a happy medium.
If you let it, Twitter can easily steal your time and work efficiency. And as much I enjoy conversing with others in the comforts of my home office, it can be extremely distracting if you are tuned into Twitter all day long. So how do you stop diluting your work day but also take advantage of this rockin’ social media channel… especially, if it’s not in your regular job description (if it is, lucky you)? Simply put, you need a Tweet Plan. With a Tweet Plan you can pre-organize and categorize your tweets for future use… keeping you more on track during your work day. Hey, you plan your blog posts, why not your tweets?!
FOLLOWING YOUR OWN TWEET PLAN
1. Select your twitter check-in times
If you are really trying to purge the noise, stick to “Tweet w/Coffee” or “Tweet w/Chocolate”. My cute way of saying first thing in the morning or after dinner. This will be the time of day that you spend organizing and planning your tweets.
2. Start with your Daily 5, which are 5 pre-planned tweets
First decide on what you plan to tweet. If you use twitter for personal use, your options are endless. But if you utilize Twitter for business too, then you may need to think more strategically about tweeting a combination of industry value and personal flavor. So your Daily 5 should include a variety of tweet types and various media. Don’t flood followers with only blog post updates. And on the flip, we don’t want to hear how many times your puppy crapped on the floor in one day. So like most vices in life, you need to find your middle ground. Here a few examples of tweet types for your Daily 5.
- Images – Share pictures you take or find. Try Snaptweet, TwitPic, or I prefer the Gyazickr app (which also posts to Flickr) on my iPhone.
- Videos – Share your own videos or favorites from other networks like YouTube, Vimeo, Viddler, Seesmic, UStream, etc.
- Blog Post Updates – You can auto update your blog posts to Twitter by installing the Twitter Updater Plugin on your blog.
- Witty Joke or Comment – If you come across a funny sign or just interesting thought, jot it down and share later on Twitter.
- Helpful Industry Resources – Scan your RSS reader and/or social bookmarking sites, or favorite industry blogs for helpful tips and advice or cool tools. Share links to them!
- Make a Tweet Plan to Get the Most from Twitter – Have a favorite author or poet, share an occasional quote – it’s even better when you can relate it to a current event.
- Announcements /Events – Share information about an event your company is hosting, holiday food drives, and/or other news.
- Ask Questions – That pertain to business or personal. Try creating a poll especially for Twitter at Polldaddy.
3. Make a Tweetlist categorized by your Daily 5
Here’s an example of what your 5 planned tweets could be for the day: (1) blog post update (2) inspiring quote (3) cool image or picture (4) helpful resource (5) witty joke or comment. Now start scanning your resources and collecting tidbits to later become your planned tweets. You could plan for the day or plan for more than one day. BTW-Notice I said pre-planned “tweets”, NOT direct messages. Please DO NOT spam your followers with DMs, unless you want to get unfollowed. Save DMs for continuing personal or professional conversations that you don’t want to share with all your followers.
4. Next, head over to Twuffer or TweetLater
Choose one of these online solutions which will allow you to schedule your tweets. Schedule for the day, week for longer. Just enter your 140 character tweets, set your date and time and you’re done. Twuffer/Tweetlater will deliver on-time, while you are getting work done or out of the office at appointments.
5. Set up Tweetlater to automate a welcome response to new followers
I love receiving news that I have a new follower and usually visit their Twitter profile, check out their Website and/or interests, read their recent update stream, and send a hello or welcome DM. That can take a lot of time if you get a lot of new followers. So I created this message that is sent via Tweetlater to my new followers: “Wooohooo, we’re Twitter friends! Check out this video I made for you: http://budurl.com/niknik.”
6. Your daily 5 should be supplemented by 1-3 spontaneous tweets
that makes your tweet total for the day around 6-8. Tweet personal, business, or random experiences in your day. When and if something hits you, waste no time and tweet it. But remember what your task at hand is and get back to it!
MEASURE YOUR TWEET PLAN
If you are the type of person who enjoys measuring your efforts, you may want to check out a suggestion from the other half of the nik_nik equation, @cyberhomes. Reggie Nicolay, Director of Social Media at Cyberhomes, measures the media he tweets with BudURL. He finds the tool helpful in discerning what people like and want to hear more of, by measuring his blog posts and other resources he shares on Twitter.
TWEET PLAN DISCLAIMER: This plan may work great for those with little time in their day to tweet, or employers who don’t want you tweeting. For some, taking time to organize tweets may actually be more time consuming that just tweeting off the cuff. This is NOT a plan for spontaneous tweeters and those of us that have adopted Twitter as a member of the family. This plan is for twits that want to tweet but are finding it hard to do so during their work day. Just remember, this is one Tweet Plan example, what does your Tweet Plan look like?