I have an icebreaker for workshop coming up that is Twitter on Paper. I just discovered this excellent primer to using Twitter called Tweeting for Companies 101 by Tara Hunt. My favorite section is about what to talk about on Twitter, a terrific list of what you should Tweet about. Note it isn't a list of how to self-promote your content, program, or services - but rather a micro conversation starter guide.
The point is not to just talk about yourself. Think of Twitter as a cocktail party and the types of chat you'd engage in to get to know people. Above all - Tara says:
Tweets that make people laugh are awesome, but tweets that make people think are even better.
Here's her awesome list.
Stuff to Tweet About
There are no rules about what you should tweet out, here are a few suggestions for you. It is important that you balance the ‘outbound’ with the ‘inbound’. In otherwords, the announcements with the conversations:
- Personal thoughts and reflections that suit your brand - this helps people feel more trust towards you and your brand and strikes up conversations
- Events (both your own and other events your audience may find interesting) - this makes things interesting and, perhaps, gives you a way to meet your followers
- Contests (”The first three people who answer this trivia question get….”) - they drive more followers and interest in what you tweet
- Replies (@twittername) - this comes from listening to your followers (you have to follow back to see their tweets). The more personal the reply, the higher the impact.
- Direct replies (d twittername) - this isn’t in the public timeline, but it helps build deeper bonds to talk directly to someone like this. This is helpful to answer people when it is a private matter or when you want to show concern (i.e. someone reports an accident, etc.)
- New blog posts - you should keep these to one per day at the very most and you should also promote other people’s blog posts that are of interest
- Announcements - if it is interesting, tweet it
- OH’s (overheard) - someone say something in the office or when you are out and about that cracks you up? Type OH: “well, if you don’t mind, im trying to work on my love life” or something else funny (sometimes used to offset potentially racy comments…if you didn’t say it, but are just REPEATING IT, then it’s okay)
- Rickrolls or other fun internet games - this shows you are a bunch of fun and has people trying to do the same for you. Spreading as many internet memes as possible is good.
- Lyrics and quotes - especially fun are the lyrics: ♪Never give the game away | Try to keep me entertained, baby | Don’t make it too easy | Leave something for me and my imagination♪ as the musical notes make for lots of questions
- Links to media you create - video is fun, podcasts, perhaps interviews that are posted online about you, etc.
- Shout outs - @twittername rocks! Thanks for the great link: http://insertlink.com These make people feel great, too.