Last week I talked about how to set up a Twitter account. You have your account set up, so now what? Now it’s time to start building your community.
Unlike Facebook, you do not need to “friend” the people you want to follow. You can “follow” another person to keep up with their tweets (or messages on Twitter) without having the other person accept or approve the connection. Some may follow you back, some may not. Likewise, people can follow you without your having to accept or approve them. It is not important at first who is (or is not) following you. Instead, you should focus on building connections and adding content (sending tweets) in order to increase your followers over time.
You can start by following any of your friends and family who use Twitter. Twitter makes it easy to find people you know. Click the drop down menu in the top right corner and select “Who to Follow.” Click “Find Friends” and you can search for your existing contacts within Hotmail, Yahoo, Gmail and/or LinkedIn. Once you are following a few people, Twitter will suggest people you may know or may be interested in following. Click “View Suggestions” from within the “Who to Follow” page or you can view them on your main “Home” page.
You can use a directory such as Twellow to find Twitter users in your area(s) of interest. For example, if your book is spiritual in nature, you might want to begin following some spiritual magazines, radio shows, speakers, and other like-minded people or companies. You can search the keyword “spiritual” to get a list of Twitter users (in order by the highest number of followers). Select the ones you want to begin following.
Now you have a Twitter account and have begun to network. Next we will talk about WHAT to tweet.