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Twitter Personality

Personality matters.

The right personality can help you stand out from the Twitter crowd. It can help you connect with clients, customers and influencers.

“But who I am is who I am,” you might think. “How can I craft a personality?”

You’re thinking wrong.

The person you are on Twitter is a constructed personality. You craft who you are on Twitter

I’m not saying your Twitter personality isn’t real. I’m saying you built it. Or to put that in a more empowering way, you get to build it.

Isn’t that being crafty and dishonest? It could be, if you’re a dishonest person. But if you’re honest, then you’ll craft an honest Twitter personality. You’ll shape a personality that’s true to who you are.

We’re All Crafters

We all behave differently in different situations. You likely share more of yourself with your loved ones than you do with work acquaintances. And you behave (and speak) differently depending on whether you’re meeting with a client, or lounging on the couch watching TV.

That doesn’t make you dishonest or crafty. It just means you’re expressing yourself appropriately.

So how can you express yourself appropriately on Twitter? Here are four simple steps…

1. Remember Everything is Public, Forever

Everything you share on Twitter creates a permanent footprint in cyberspace. Yes, you can delete tweets, but it’s likely that there’s a record of them somewhere.

If you wouldn’t say it in public, in front of your mom, your kids or your boss, don’t say it on Twitter.

2. Show Who You Are – At Your Best

Everyone has good and bad days. None of us can be perfect all of the time.

But that doesn’t mean we have to show our dark sides to the world.

Complaining, getting angry, and being mean are all bad ideas on Twitter. If you need to vent, do so with your friends, in a private space.

Twitter’s the place to be your best self.

3. Don’t Be Afraid to Shine Brightly

You’ve probably read (including on this blog) that it’s a good idea to choose a Twitter niche and stick with it.

That’s good advice. But stick too tightly to your niche, and you risk curtailing your personality.

When you’ve got something exciting to share, share it. Your Twitter followers love to see that you’re human, and that you’ve got diverse interests.

4. Lay it Out In Your Bio

Have you ever been into a doctor’s office and seen a picture of their family on their desk?

That picture isn’t just for the doctor’s benefit. It’s there for you too, so you can see that the doctor is a loving, caring person. It’s a window into the doctor’s personality.

Your Twitter bio should be a window into your personality. It should let your followers know who you are and what they can expect from you.

Follow these four steps, and you’ll craft a beautiful Twitter personality that shows you at your best.

Unusual Twitter Uses

We all know that Twitter can help grow your business, connect with influencers and fill your sales funnel.

But there’s way more you do on Twitter. How you can use Twitter to get ahead is only limited by your imagination.

Check out these tips to get your brain buzzing.

1. Sneak Into Conferences

Ever been to a conference where you could share your thoughts on Twitter? It’s a growing trend. Academics have latched onto this and realized they can sneak into conferences through the back door by following the conference Twitter feed.

People will usually Tweet conference highlights, so you’ll get the best stuff without spending the time or money attending.

Academic Meghan Duffy explains how she started attending conferences via Twitter:

This summer, because I was moving to Michigan, I wasn’t able to make it to either Evolution or ESA. I was, however, able to follow along with both meetings, by following tweets with the conference hashtags (#evol2012 and #esa2012). Following the tweets from Rosie Redfield’s plenary at Evolution was a particular highlight.

You can do this with business conferences too. All you need to do is find out the conference hashtag, and look out for prolific tweeters who are attending the conference.

Tip from: Meghan Duffy.

2. Ask Anything – And Get Quick Answers from Real People

Google may be the king of search, but that doesn’t mean it will always serve up the answer you need.

When it’s a real person you need help from, Twitter is ideal. Adam Zeis writes:

Twitter is also an amazing tool for getting quick answers to pretty much any questions you may have. I’ve used it for help when making a purchase (choosing between two items), getting opinions on certain topics and settling disputes with friends. Depending on the amount of followers you have, you can easily ask nearly anything and you will instantly receive an answer.

It beats out searching the web for results in many cases, and often nets you answers you wouldn’t be able to find by simply searching.

Tip from Adam Zeis.

3. Connect With Study Buddies

Need to swot up on a new topic? Twitter is a fantastic learning tool. You can find help and support from other learners who are digging into the same subject as you.

Medical student Brittany Chan explains how she began using Twitter as a study booster:

I started using Twitter as a way to waste time when I needed a break from studying. Then something crazy happened. Twitter transformed from a major distraction to a valuable study tool. I began to tweet questions to fellow med students about concepts I didn’t understand, and they responded. Other students would tweet their confusions, and I’d attempt to explain the mechanism of a drug or the purpose of the alanine cycle. Many times, several others would chime in to augment our collective understanding or ask additional questions.

Chan also uses Twitter to keep herself updated on the latest research in her field:

As a medical student and future pediatrician, I follow accounts of official medical associations, such as the AAP (@AmerAcadPeds) and AAMC (@AAMCToday), leading medical journals, including JAMA (@JAMA_current) and The Lancet (@TheLancet), as well as several different kinds of physicians who frequently tweet interesting new articles.

Tips via: Brittany Chan.

4. Discover Job Opportunities – Before They’re Advertised

We’ve written before about how Twitter is great at helping you find hidden opportunities.

You can also use Twitter to discover jobs before they’re even advertised as available. Follow the employees at a business you’d like to join, and you’ll get to see the inner workings of the company.

In an article on using Twitter for job hunting, Simon Caine explains he does this:

I found following existing employees (particularly recruitment officers) much more helpful than following the company’s Twitter account. Individuals are much more likely to respond. Plus it may help you stay one step ahead of the rest of the job market: they’ll often tweet if they’re changing jobs, which let’s you know there’s a vacancy.

I found lots of companies had a list called “staff” where you can find the employees, but you can also search by users’ bios using Google. I’d recommend following the list itself. It saves time and has the advantage that whenever a new member of staff joins the company you will get their tweets automatically (once they’ve been added to the list).

Tip via Simon Caine.

5. Find New Ways of Thinking

Twitter isn’t only great for getting your questions answered. It’s also handy if you want to challenge yourself by answering questions.

Denise Graveline explains how she finds this helpful:

Sometimes, the best way to see something anew is to be questioned about it by someone who’s genuinely curious and doesn’t know you well. My followers on Twitter ask me all sorts of questions–about my blog, about public speaking, about social media, about food and travel and playing guitar–that prompt me to think with care about what I do. It’s a great playback machine.

The free plug-in InboxQ lets you search for questions in your niche.

Tip via Denise Graveline.

Over to You

Do you use Twitter in any out-of-the-box ways? Let us know about them in the comments, below.

Twitter Ideas

The interwebs are greedy. The more great content you create, the more you’re expected to create.

But what happens when the well runs dry? What should you do when you’re parched for ideas?

How can you create awesome content, day after day?

Turn to Twitter, and you’ll find a well of inspiration that’s ever flowing.

Here are three simple techniques you can use.

1. The Andrew Chen Method

Entrepreneur and angel investor Andrew Chen uses a simple three-step formula to help him come up with things to write about.

  1. Tweet an insight, idea, or quote.
  2. See how many people retweet it.
  3. If it catches, then I write a blog post elaborating on the topic.

Sharing an idea in a tweet only takes him a minute or two. If the tweet gets ignored, he’s not lost much at all. But if it’s picked up and retweeted, he knows he’s got a great idea that he should expand upon.

2. Check You’re Writing in the Right Direction

Spirituality author and storyteller Donald Miller uses Twitter while he’s writing books. He shares ideas from the book to find out whether his readers will appreciate what he’s writing about.

Miller explains:

I recently used Twitter to find out what themes and ideas would stimulate thought. I would tweet an idea I was writing about, and if it got re-tweeted or stimulated conversation, I was more eager to use it in my book.

Here are Donald’s four steps for getting ideas on Twitter:

  1. Tweet a chapter idea and ask if anybody has given the idea any thought. If you hear crickets, skip that chapter.
  2. Got a powerful one-liner? Tweet it and see if it gets re-tweeted. You might turn that one-liner into a complete paragraph or more.
  3. Stuck on an idea? Tweet and ask anybody if they’ve read an interesting article about it. Twitter is a great resource tool.
  4. Use Twitter to summarize an idea. The great thing about 140 characters is it makes you condense your thinking, which is often the essence of good writing.

3. Split Test Headlines

Leo Widrich of Buffer App uses Twitter to split test headline ideas. Here’s the steps he follows:

1.) Find 2 headlines for an article that you think will perform well.
2.) Tweet both of these headlines at roughly the same time, at least 1 hour apart. Here I’ve found that doing the 2 Tweets both in the AM or both in the PM works best – 9am is much more similar to 10am, then say 12pm is to 1pm. So going with clear “morning” or “afternoon” times is crucial.
3.) Compare the data for which headline to settle on.

In one test Widrich conducted, one tweet got twice as many clicks as the other tweet, so he had a clear winner.

Over to You

Have you ever used Twitter to come up with ideas? What techniques do you use?