Because how you represent yourself on social media is pretty much unrestricted, people sometimes get carried away. Twitter is an amazing platform, but you’ve got to admit it: sometimes it can be amazingly dumb too. This is not because of Twitter itself, of course, but because of how some people use it. Although the 280-character limit may seem restrictive, if you use it wisely, you will have more than enough space to express yourself.
Whether you’re using your Twitter account for business or personal purposes, here are the 7 deadly sins of Twitter you should definitely avoid if you don’t want people to cringe at your tweets:
Rule of thumb: think about what you want to achieve with your Tweets and tailor your content accordingly. In essence, become your own editor and publish only what you want to be known for. Want to build your reputation in real estate? Great! Tweet helpful information for home-buyers and sellers or on specific sections of cities where you’re active. Want to build a fashion empire? Excellent! Show amazing or cringe-worthy fashion pictures of the week. Give 5-minute fashion tips. Build your Twitter persona by becoming a go-to person on a topic that matters to you and that you’re passionate about. Be consistent. That said, you don’t always just have to write only about fashion. Because you want to draw in audiences from adjacent areas as well, you could Tweet about the impact of fashion on society or how different societies have different fashion styles etc. It’s related, but expands your topic a little bit. But whatever you do: don’t post about real estate if you want to be known for fashion.
Tweetstorms are a relatively new concept denoting a sudden boost in activity around a certain topic – usually around hot/breaking news or a controversial issue of some sort. It’s often created by one user who sends a message to their followers using a hashtag which can rapidly go viral. The tweet then spreads as people use the hashtag to tweet or retweet the message. The effect is overwhelming and unprofessional, so it’s best for you to avoid it.
3. Recycling old tweets
Even if you think that tweet from two weeks ago was amazing, don’t recycle it just in case someone hasn’t seen it! It’s lame and people who have seen it will probably roll their eyes. Sometimes it’s better not to tweet at all! So keeping your content fresh and relevant is key. But that said, you should monitor the engagement for your content. And if you see that that post from 2015 with the meme about the cat and the puppy cuddling still gets strong engagement…then by all means recycle it and let people enjoy it.
Well, we’ve all committed this sin at least once, especially when hashtags were still in their infancy. Before they were cool, that is. But, today, when you see too many hashtags in a 280-character long message, you can’t really focus on the meaning of the message. It looks distracting and takes away from your tweet. Best to keep it to 2-3 hashtags per message #keepitshortandsweet #overhashtagging #toomuchistoomuch #icantdecide #notcool
5. Don’t repost verbatim
Some people have a habit of posting the same content across all their social media platforms. Don’t do that. It’s lazy and shows that you press on one big “post everywhere now!” button instead of taking the time to tailor your content to the different audiences, styles and interests that characterize each platform. Keep your social media accounts separate, because they’re made for separate purposes and audiences. Twitter is mostly for short, impactful messages while Facebook is more visually oriented and speaks to your friends and/or family. So the same messages don’t have the same impact across apps. It’s best to vary your posts between platforms and keep in mind which audience they’ll reach.
6. Twitter trolling
When a conversation turns into something spiteful and negative, it’s time to go away. It’s never good to be involved in online fights - after all, the Internet never forgets and you really can’t win. Even worse, if you get carried away by your emotions you could damage your reputation and come across as unprofessional.
7. Bad grammar
Last but not least, when you tweet, make sure your message is well-put and understandable. For example, many people think your and you’re are interchangeable. Trust me on this: their/they’re not [sic!]. Mistakes like this can make you seem inexperienced, careless and significantly lessen the relevance of your message, no matter how smart its content is. It’s always better to proofread your post before hitting that ‘enter’ button.