Twitter can be a confusing, fast paced and overwhelming platform when you are just starting out on the road to promote your handmade business or blog. A lot of people I know make accounts, get overwhelmed or frustrated with the learning curve, and abandon ship – which is sad, because they are leaving behind a valuable resource for their brand.
Twitter enables you to connect almost effortless with new individuals and inform them about your brand. Your content is able to reach a much wider audience than a Facebook status or a blog post and it is much easier for your content to become viral on Twitter. My general rule of thumb is give each new social media platform about six months of regular use before you decide whether or not it is working for you, and Twitter is no exception.
Six months seems a bit extreme, I know. But this amount of time allows you to learn all the ins, outs, tricks and perks of each social media platform and how to use it effectively. It gives you time to build an audience, create connections, and draw statistics as to how much traffic the platform is driving to your site. When I first joined Twitter I hated it. I didn’t like using it and I abandoned it. I revisited it a few months later, actually read some articles with tips for how to connect with others on Twitter, and fell in love. I have made so many real connections with people through this platform! Twitter has opened me up to so many opportunities, as well, including numerous blog features, collaboration opportunities, access to experienced entrepreneurs openly sharing their wealth of knowledge (for free, I might add!), features in magazines, gift guides and more! I discovered & participated in amazing local events that grew my customer base enormously. I was even approached about a design of mine being taught at a prestigious sewing studio in Ohio, and also approached to have a pattern I created printed in an e-book of mess free crafts for children – amazing opportunities I wouldn’t have had if I hadn’t connected with those people on Twitter.
Twitter is about so much more than just the content YOU post – by taking the time to find interesting people to follow & actually consume the content in your feed , you may find very useful info, opportunities or tools to grow your handmade business or blog. So many people just link up their Facebook page, Etsy shop or blog so the content is shared and never actually use Twitter as a social media platform, just a place to spam their links. This is a terrible idea. It will not generate followers, click throughs or buyers. In order to get the full benefits of Twitter, you need to curate and actively consume content.
Go further than reading what other Twitter users are posting – take the time to reply or re-tweet content from other users. This creates a connection, creates new content for your followers and lays the foundation for communication, which could lead to amazing things for your handmade business! You never know what a few tweets back and forth will lead to. So don’t be shy, ask questions, answer questions, make comments, start conversations.
So, set up a Twitter account! Go out into the Twitterverse and make friends! Start by searching for people with a common interest as you, then people in your target audience once you have built up a hundred followers or so. Communicate with people as you follow them, reply to their most recent tweets & engage in conversations. Maybe find people in your area, follow other parents or people who are tweeting about your favorite anime. Strike up conversations, but keep self promotion to a minimum. Be a person, not a product pusher.
Social media is just that. Social. To get great results from social media, you have to be social. You have to have a personality. You have to engage and make connections. Let’s start here – I’m @lu_and_ed on Twitter. Give me a follow & say hello! Comment below with your user name so I can check out your profile!