For some, it’s hard enough finding your voice in a 500 word blog post. So when it comes to expressing your thoughts and opinions on Twitter in 140 characters or less, you’d think it would be even harder. Right?!
Well actually, finding your voice on Twitter can be a pretty painless process if you employ the right strategies. For those of us with kids, we “get it” right away. Twitter can be a lot like your 2 year old. It screams and whines and will bark orders at you all day (ex: give me….get me….follow me, etc). Parents know that getting your child to communicate with them is truly an art that requires patience and creativity. And Twitter is no different. So when it comes to finding your voice on Twitter, I suggest you start thinking like a toddler or how you would communicate with one!
The following list includes my top 10 tips for developing better communication with toddlers on Twitter:
1. Toddlers have a limited vocabulary. So make your tweets simple and not too complicated. Do your best to tweet how you speak. Don’t overuse acronyms.
2. Toddlers have the attention span of flies. So you need you to get to the point. Think in titles and summarize. You wouldn’t read a chapter book without pictures word for word to 2 year old.
3. Toddlers like toys. So share helpful resources like links to smart blogs, industry reports, funny YouTube videos, free ebooks, etc.
4. Toddlers have favorite characters… The Wiggles, Backyardigans, Elmo, etc. So find a niche you know and are passionate about. Infuse your tweets with information about it, share your expertise, and foster relationships with others in your niche. Start a fan club or TwitterGroups for your niche interest.
5. Toddlers naturally embody a transparency radar. They can see right through you. So don’t be something you’re not. And especially don’t spam or sell to twits. If you’re a genuine twit you will get the respect you deserve.
6. Toddlers learn best from hands-on experiences. So be sure to share your most interesting daily happenings, life ponderings, and hair raising questions.
7. Toddlers can benefit from the right equipment. For example, a high chair, bib, and sippy cup can make for a cleaner and more efficient lunch. So take advantage of Twitter support tools. Utilize mobile and desktop apps to streamline the tweet process and be a more efficient conversationalist (Tweetdeck, Twittelator, Twitterific, Twitterberry, SnapTweet, Twitpic, etc.).
8. Toddlers like Kung Fu Panda and Tom & Jerry! So share a variety of media and expand your voice to include updates or links from: Flickr, Facebook, YouTube, Blip.fm, your blog posts, etc.
9. Toddlers can learn a lot from their peers. So read other twitter streams to get new ideas, style, etc. Remember to learn new ideas, but update them with your own twist upon implementation.
10. Toddlers rely on consistency. So be the same person online you are offline.
Once you understand that Twitter is not just a broadcasting tool used for barking orders…but a Web of communities with interest-based conversations, you’ll find your voice and a new respect for it in the process. Good luck and be nice…or I’ll put you on a time-out!