The importance of twitter
Twitter is different from other social media sites
The twitter equation
Content in your post
- Too much direct promotion: (ie. buy this service). Some say this type of content should only be posted in 1 tweet out of every 10 tweets.
- Mixing your personal and brand identity: Set up separate twitter accounts, and distance your personal from your professional identity, or risk alienating your followers and looking unprofessional. Still be personable, so people can identify with your brand/company.
- Letting the trend guide you: Use trends to inspire you in your twitter content and headline, but only if you can connect it seamlessly with your message
- Tweeting without a schedule or plan: You should set up a yearly schedule of dates to keep in mind to share content so that you don’t miss important events that provide rich content (i.e. international conflict resolution day).
Mediators, coaches and facilitators, try the following when you tweet:
- See what’s trending: Check what is trending during the day, and use the #’s you see. Also, keep track of useful “Retweet Bait” like #FF – #FollowFriday, #FridayFeeling, or #TBT – Throw back Thursday. These can be used in your twitter equation to maximize the spread of your message.
- Post blog materials: If you are looking for inspiration, tweet a blog link, shorten it with Bit.ly or within your Google account. Feel free to go back and promote previously posted blogs to new audiences.
- Thank new followers: with a unique message or question to add further content to your twitter feed, and show potential followers that you would be an ideal twitter friend in the future.
- Use photos or graphics: Share photos twitter, but remember they are only live for 20 minutes, so don’t take too much time or spend too many resources in developing these.
Followers – who to follow and who to avoid
- Following the wrong people: People who are not your target clients should not be followed, unless you have some other type of strategic business reason for doing so.
- Paying for followers: If you have a social media budget, use this to hire someone to do regular posts.
- Keep it local: Connect with local community members, businesses and community groups on twitter, so that they see your name out there. Engage with them on local issues so you that look like an available expert.
View twitter as a tool to build relationships like you would in person.
- Build Relationships: Even if twitter is the only platform for some of these new relationships, try to consider them as important as in-person professional relationships. You might meet these practitioners in person one day
- Consistent identity: Choose three characteristics that your ideal clients look for in a mediator, coach or facilitator, then brainstorm ways that you can tweet to emphasize or demonstrate this aspect of your brand identity (i.e. if you deal with condo disputes, then post about condo-related regulations, court decisions related to condo disputes, news stories on condos and condo associations to show that you are active in the community and that you are an expert).
- Use a mediation-based tweeting philosophy: build trust with more communication, and develop collaborative and friendly relationships with others as you would in the ‘real’ world.
- Help other people connect: Do your best to be a ‘connector’. Reply to other people’s tweets and mention interested third parties as they might return the favour one day.
- Quality Circle/community of practice: Use twitter as a quality circle or community of practice to discuss issues you face in difficult mediation, coaching and facilitation cases to get feedback and ideas.