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Beach Cottage How to Blog ~ 8 Sweet Twitter Tips for Real Girls

Tue 6th, Dec, 2011

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G’day!

Welcome to a Beach Cottage Sweet Blogging How to Blog post ~ Twitter Tips.

Let’s talk about social media shall we?

When I first started this blog, there was no way ever on this earth I thought firstly that I would still be here a few years later and secondly that you would be with me.  But I am and you are and in that journey I have continued, unwittingly to gather about my person experience and knowledge of how this blogging thing works….and furthermore I have actually found that one of the most enjoyable things I find to blog about is blogging…strange but true…once I get thinking about a How to Blog post, I love getting it down on paper :-)

I love this medium, and over the last few years I have seen it grow in leaps and bounds, I love how it has changed media, I love how it has moved the power (especially in things like the home decor world) from a few key players and publishers to people everywhere doing their thing and showing off their talent… and in the last few months I have seen it move and change direction yet again…there is no time for standing still in the blog world, I have no idea if statistically I am correct, I don’t, obviously pay anyone to research things for me, but I can feel in the water that blogging is taking on a whole different vibe and if you want to get out there with the big girls you have to move with them too.

And those big girls rock social media.  A lot.

Which leads me to Twitter.  Yes I am very late to the party on this.  I wrote a How To Blog Course without being on Twitter?  Yes I did :-) But better late than never, here are my Twitter tips.

You see, when Twitter first hit us, I was probably one of the early users…which was, I think, one of my mistakes…I didn’t quite get how in 140 characters this could really do much for me…mum to three, with laundry and a real life, blogging from an old cottage on the beaches?

And so, I virtually ignored Twitter, I would check in every now and then and look briefly, with stand-back interest at what was going on and I set up my blog so that it fed a link to Twitter (because everyone told me to) and did nothing much more…

Then, a few months ago, I took stock of my blog and got ready to make a few changes…it was time for a blogging new look for me, a bit of a shake up (new look coming in the New Year thanks to the lovely Darcy…that girl rocks)…anyway, I did a bit of thinking and musing of all things blog, and Mr Beach Cottage helped me with a few things…what came foremost out of all that musing was that being a blogger can, at times, become rather lonesome…not lonely in a I am sad and tearful kinda way, gosh I could sit here and type all day and take photos if I had the time, but lonesome as in there’s not much real contact in the real world sometimes when you are a blogger…

So I decided to look for a few blogger events in Sydney and thought I’d get myself out and about and doing this blogging thing with other bloggers (and since then I am now going to blogging events in New York, bring it on baby, and Melbourne and Kuala Lumpur)

So, I decided to do this contacting other people who were blogging like me, via Twitter, it seemed the quickest and easiest way for me….I hoped I could find some local girls who perhaps would like a coffee now and again and talk about their blogs, do a little bit of brainstorming and feeback, make a few friends locally…

And I haven’t looked back.

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So here are my Twitter Tips, why it’s working for me & a few things I’ve learnt..and how it fits in with blogging & how to blog

 

1.  Twitter Tips ~ Information

I get to keep in the loop quickly & easily & see what my favourite bloggers are up to, and what’s going on where I am and in the news.   I follow the girls I have met along the way with blogging, and some lovely readers too and we can communicate with ease without any fuss.  I like that.

 

2.  Twitter Tips ~ The Art of Following Don’t just follow any old Tom, Dick or Harry

As a  new Twitter user this can be not only tempting but interesting…there is a whole big wide world of people out there, ready for you to read their Tweets.  Stop right there cowboy!

Think about who you want to follow, and then take a second or two to think about it again.  Once you start following people you will start getting their feed of what they write…so you want this to be interesting, appropriate and informative to you…

…the mistake I made in the early days with Twitter and one of the reasons I think I didn’t enjoy it then, was that I had it set to follow anyone who followed me, I thought this was the ‘right’ thing to do and I didn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings, especially if they were blog readers and followed my blog.

But…what happened is that my Timeline was noisy & cluttered and more importantly not enjoyable for me…hence Twitter failed for me….now it’s very streamlined and I love to quickly scan what’s going on, what’s new and what’s of interest in my little Twitter world…

You will notice that Power Tweeters like Darren Rowse etc have the Art of Following down pat…they only follow a handful of people….they have built up a following but they only follow a niche group of people that they are interested in (and need to know to further there own brands ;-) )…take a leaf out of their books and only follow people you are genuinely interested in hearing from…

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3. Twitter Tips ~ Be Selective

I treat my Twitter following a bit like the blogs I read, I only follow the people that I feel interested in and or provide me with content that I find is clickable…Twitter for me now is a mix of the personal people/blogs I like, the news/tv brands I like to be informed about and the bloggersphere stuff that I think is relevant and interesting to me.

So be selective with yours and you will be amazed what comes your way with Twitter.  Only follow people you genuinely find informative and want to interact and engage with….(even if they never interact with you ;-) )

What interests me on Twitter is those who Tweet about blogging (that’s part of me now), though I have to say I have unfollowed many of these because they bombard you somewhat with only their content and that can get rather boring, but I do have a few key players there that I am enjoying reading what they have to say.

I also like to follow friends I have made through my blog, I like to follow some people who are also into home decor, design and of course coastal living and lastly I like to follow other bloggers I like and some who live locally to me.

 

4. Twitter Tips ~ It’s Tough in Twitter Land & you’ll need a Thick Skin

OK, one of the reasons I never really took off with Twitter was because I found it relatively insincere…a lot of people on there blowing their own trumpets, a lot of people blowing other people’s trumpets and a WHOLE lot of cliques going on, especially the blogging world cliques… you may or may not be in the in-crowd and sometimes this will hurt your feelings…you will contribute something to a blogger you follow who Tweets that she is having a bad day/kids are driving her mad blah blah blah…you will reply to her and nothing will come back from her…hey that’s Twitter….. a few days later the same blogger will ask for recommendations on where to shop in your home town…you will think hey I can add something really relevant to this, I know this!  so you will reply and nothing will reply back…and on both occasions said blogger will reply to her own little clique (normally other bloggers) and you will be horribly ignored.

It’s kinda embarrassing sometimes to put yourself out there, especially if you try to communicate with a blogger who is (or more likely thinks she/he is) big…they will more often than not totally not acknowledge you…. this is one of those occasions where you will need the back of a duck and let that water run right off you baby….this has happened to me a lot!  I  have felt like the uncoolest Twitter person ever….That WILL happen to you on Twitter…you just have to go with it.

So why bother then?  Because after a few ignores, a few moments, a few times being not in the in-crowed you will also get the other moments, where you connect with people you like, where people will send you a message to say something nice..you will start to move and groove with people you like on Twitter and you will poo-poo those in-crowds and cliques and guess what…you may even start your own ;-)

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5. Twitter Tips ~ Be Real & Genuine & Use Your Own Voice

Ok this goes for just about everything in blogging…goodness don’t you just see that everywhere?? Yep it’s getting old, but it’s never been truer, with more and more people jumping on the bandwagon, being you is one of your most important assets and using your Twitter stream to further that, in both who you follow and what you say is paramount to getting followers (if that is what you want) and more, having a good time on there!


6.  Twitter Tips ~ Be Interesting

Yeah right, how exactly do I make myself interesting then?  I have no idea ;-) but read on for what I’ve learnt for real girls…

So a lot of the professional bloggers will tell you here to keep your Tweets niche and on topic yadda yadda yadda…I think though that often those giving you this information are business bloggers, and those blogging about blogging for money and clicks….but what about Real Girls Tweeting?

Well I think real girls like to dish the gossip…just like in real life, girls like to natter about stuff boys might think is totally meaningless…

Do you want to know what your fave top model had for breakfast?  YES!  Do you want to see Victoria Beckham pregnant on the side of a swimming pool, airbrushed in black and white?  YES!  Do you want to see via a Twitpic that your fave Mummy blogger ain’t so perfect after all?  YES!    Do you want to hear your fave home decor blogger’s new budget lipstick find that makes her feel 10 years younger.  OH YES!

So I think for girls like me, rather than a business blog, or a blog about blogging, Twitter is actually an extra arm to your blog for you to reach out and interact, as if you would at the school gates with friends…no people do not want to be constantly bombarded with my local coastal finds, or what my latest blog post is about…. but they may want to see what I’ve got for dinner….

 

7. Twitter Tips ~ Observe the Power Twitters & then do it for YOU!

Follow some of the big girls for a while and see what they do…you will notice how some of them are completely self-absorbed, you will notice some of them working the networking thing until they are blue in the face and then you will notice how some of them have genuine interactions, connections and it seems real communication (not just with their little clique) going on..this is where I hope Twitter will take me.

But you have to choose an amalgamation of the above tactics to find what works for you, how it suits your time and lifestyle and what you want Twitter to do to your blog and for you.  I have observed and heard a lot of talk about Twitter (and Facebook too), being the be all and end all for your blog traffic….and that you have to get on it and get on it fast and start driving traffic via it….personally I have not done that…I set out with Facebook on a whim and now have the Beach Cottage Facebook girls on there…and love ‘em

…but funnily enough guess what?  I get traffic from it…cos it comes and grows from genuine interesting and interactive connections...you can’t ‘make’ that happen in my opinion…same with Twitter, yes you can probably drive traffic to your blog if you are a business blogger and really work at it, but if you are a Real Girl blogger I think using Twitter for YOU firstly is the key to keeping it relevant and more importantly, keeping it up…then the other stuff organically follows…

8. Twitter Tips ~ Make your Tweet Super Super Easy to Read

A lot of the professional bloggers and those that give out Twitter advice say to put certain things in capital letters, do this do that…but for me I think girls couldn’t really care less about that..real girls if it is interesting will click it whether it’s three short sharp words in capitals with a link, or whether you’ve worked those 140 characters to within an inch of their life…just make sure it’s fairly easy to read, not too many hashtags, and @ signs and you’ll be laughing

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Now Let’s Get Twittering

I’d love to interact with you on Twitter …You can find me here - and let’s share links….send me your links, tell me your fave lipstick…show us your new coastal Christmas decoration ;-) …don’t be shy about suggesting links if you think me and my Twitter followers would like them…ask questions and get on it…that’s what Twitter’s there for…and you might never know where it leads!

So what are your thoughts on Twitter??  I would really like to know

…in dabbling with Twitter properly for the last few months, and in looking at things found on the web about Twitter, I think there is a whole lot of stuff being written by a core group of people who are using and wanting to get from Twitter a whole different set of things than I want to get from Twitter and real girls whether they blog or not…those of us who are not only blogging for advertising budgets…I would love to hear your opinion on this?  What are you experiences with Twitter?  Have you used it go grow your blog?  Is your Twitter account sitting there getting stagnant like mine was?  Does Twitter get your blog traffic?  Are you a super Tweeter?  Do you love the medium?  Love to know…

Hope you enjoyed the Beach Cottage Twitter Tips..and hope to see you over there in Twitter Land :-)

beach decor

 

need to know the reasons I won’t comment on your blog?  Go here for the Sweet Blogging guide to why you might not be getting comments

and here for the Effective Habits for Real Girl Bloggers  

 

 

Wanna hear my lowdown on all I’ve learnt on blogging, while doing the laundry and having a life?

Well I wrote a course on everything I’ve learnt along the way ;-)  

Go here for more information $29

 

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32 Responses to “Beach Cottage How to Blog ~ 8 Sweet Twitter Tips for Real Girls”

  1. Deanne says:

    Hmmmmm, the reason I have stayed away from twitter and facebook is simply time- I spend way too much time on the computer now- is it really worth it, how much time does it take????

    • sarah says:

      well Deanne, take it or leave it…

      if you follow just a few friendly people, you can make some lovely friendships on there, with people who have the same interests…that’s the beauty of social media in my eyes…in my day to day life there aren’t many people who like talking about side of the road vintage furniture lol! …it doesn’t have to take much time, you just have to get it to suit you x

      • Deanne says:

        Sarah you have given me some food for thought which is why I commented- if it came from anyone else I probably wouldn’t think anymore of it. I will look into it- maybe after Christmas when I can breathe again!

      • sarah says:

        yeah, I think now is not the time to start it Deanne! but in the New Year when it quitens down could actually be perfect xo

  2. I think I met you via Twitter? I’ve met most of the interesting blogs I follow that way. It’s definitely been wonderful for my blog and helped me to meet some fantastic people in real life too. As a blog referrer, Twitter and Facebook fight it out for the top position behind Google every month so I divide my time between the both. See you soon!

    • sarah says:

      hoping to meet some lovely and interesting blogs too on Twitter…well I found yours Nikki and now I’m gonna meet you soon on a blog meet, guessing that shows the power of Twitter! x

  3. ANON says:

    Is it necessary to be one of the “girls” or to be included in one of the big blogs cliche? Seriously, I would be asking myself who am I doing this for & why?, do I need that sort of purpose in my life? And who has the time to spend so much effort on trying to improve ones own social media status. Keep it real, us real mothers know what is important! And it doesn`t include needing validation on a computer.

    On another note, how do you find the time to post so many posts each day? I`m a busy mom with 3 children, doing laundry, cooking, preparing for Christmas …the same as most mom`s and I have to take time out to read others blog posts yet alone constantly post nor worry about what others are doing to bring traffic to their sites or how important are they in the blog world.

  4. This post is so helpful! I’ve been using Twitter quite a lot and have had a lot of success with it. I use it just like you mentioned, in a personal sense and also for promotion. If people follow your blog, the last thing they want to do is see a tweet for the same blog they already looked at! I am following you because I want MORE! So give me more about you, your life. It’s kind of like a little extra perk, like getting coupons if you sign up for emails, or getting to be the first to know something. There’s a reason why so many people follow celebs – they want to know what goes on in their life. Treat yourself like a celeb and it’s great! Also, try to respond to people on a personal level, and not just the ‘big’ bloggers because you are more likely to get a response!

    All in all, loved this post and learned something new :D

  5. julienne says:

    Hi Sarah, as an avid reader for years and a facebook friend since the beginning I am a bit naughty and don’t comment as often as I should.
    But…I don’t understand twitter!!!!!! I hopped over to see you on your link and maybe I am just too old but I couldn’t follow. What am I not understanding?!!!!!!! After losing my husband I dropped out of the blogosphere but have returned with a new blog, within a day my very favourites were on board these are the bloggers who kept in touch with me through those difficult months, the bloggers who rang emailed and skyped. Sometimes I think these are the only people I need but at other times I know that meeting new people will fill that lonely hole.. Does twitter help here? I have so many questions are you around for coffee over Christmas New Year period? I will be in Sydney. I really do enjoy my visits to your world. Julienne xx

  6. Tammi says:

    I don’t use Twitter…to be honest I don’t really know what it is. I do facebook as you know but find it hard somedays to get on there so often miss out on what is happening. I’m pretty dreadful when it comes to social media but life as a homeschooling mum is pretty hectic…next year when the kids go back to school I will have a lot more time on my hands and not that I want to use it all up being in front of a computer all day, but it will allow me to stay more ‘connected’ :)
    An interesting post Sarah and definite food for thought.

    x

  7. Billie-Jo says:

    A great post Sarah. I started a blog a while back but felt somewhat uncomfortable with where it was or wasn’t going. it needed a little more thought. In the meantime I began to tweet and discovered you! Had you nor started to tweet I would not have discovered your blog.
    Now I aim to re-visit my blog and refresh it for the new year with renewed energy. Thank you for your inspiration ;-D

  8. Melinda says:

    Sarah, I am such a “fraidy cat” when it comes to social media – your post was really interesting. Maybe I just need to grow a backbone and jump on in.

    Thanks for all the info – do I dare?!

  9. loulou says:

    Hi Sarah

    I know you know who I am but I have to say

    “hello my name is Loulou and I am a twitter-holic” there I said it, I’m glad I came to this meeting tonight.

    no seriously – love my social media in every way. It endorses the “branding” that you are. The Branding doesn’t have to be an actual business but the brand can be you. (marketing and business is one of my backgrounds)

    Marketing is the key in any form of business in life and twitter and facebook are so vitally important for many forms of connecting.

    But girls – my tip is – you don’t have to be a blogger to be a tweeter – you can purely tweet for fun and social commentary and connecting to others alike.

    thanks sarah and I hope I am one of those “few” blogs that you read.

    Have a wonderful day,

    loulou, hereiamloulou blog

    x

    • sarah says:

      yes thanks Loulou, I meant to put that..actually think it is a great way to micro-blog if you can’t be bothered or don’t have the time to be a blogger, thanks for your input x

  10. Claudia says:

    I’m fairly new to Twitter – avoided it for a long time because of time constraints. I also thought “Who cares about the minutia of my life?” I still sort of think that, but I set up an account because it was being mentioned everywhere in blogland. But I don’t visit every day. Now that I just got an iphone, I may be there more often. I’m really not sure what to do with it!

  11. Thanks to your encouragement to try something new all the time, I started on twitter last week. Slowly getting the hang of it. Great way to whittle down your thoughts and get right to the point.

    Will not be twittering after a glass of wine :-)

  12. This was great to read! I definitely noticed the cliques! I avoided social networking for quite some time, but then gave in. While I enjoy facebook a lot (love that I can post pictures), I don’t put much energy (or non at all) into twitter. You kind of inspire me to change that…, yet at the same time I want one platform to be enough. Conflict!

  13. Oh, one more thing…. I hope you’ll write about Facebook too!? Or have you already?

  14. Oh my gosh Sarah-I love this! First, let me say, I have been popping in checking out your blog for several weeks, but haven’t taken the time to comment :( sorry. Your blog is amazing-I am completely “carried away” with your photos, words, etc. I have ALWAYS wanted to live on the beach, and just haven’t been able to make that happen…yet! At, ahem, 49 yrs. old, I better get moving!!

    Now, about twitter. I am definitely the uncoolest person on twitter. Not sure where I fit in there, but with your advice, I will make some better selections, and keep at it :) Thanks!

  15. I’ve had a Twitter account for about two years. I was using it quite a bit up until about 8 months ago, and then I just sort of lost interest. Partly because of the cliques that you mentioned – I never have been and never will be a cliquey person – partly because I was tired of spending so much time on the computer, and partly because it was feeling too much like a chore. Must tweet in order to make connections with other decorators & bloggers and to drive traffic to my blog (which never happened). Plus I never got the hang of all the lingo and hash tags and stuff. And not having an iPhone, I can only tweet from my work or home computer, which means I’m sitting in front of a computer screen and not out & about or getting other stuff done while I’m tweeting.

    All that being said, sometimes I do wonder if I’m missing out on good stuff by not checking out Twitter regularly. Maybe I’ll get back to using it more, maybe not. If I do, I’ll definitely keep your eight Twitter tips in mind. Thanks for taking the time to share your Twitter insight – and just so you know, I’m pretty sure I’m the uncoolest Tweeter ever!

    • sarah says:

      no I think I am the uncoolest Tweeter haha Kelly…

      I think the key to it is turning it off! I am enjoying my Twitter experience but limiting it to what suits my lifestyle x

  16. Anonymous says:

    I don’t tweet. Life’s too short and as I heard or read somewhere, there’s too much comment and not enough analysis when it comes to social media.
    As for Facebook, well, I’ve got a page but very rarely go here. It just doesn’t interest me. I work in media every day and to be honest, I’ve got more things to do with my day than try to drum up followers for my blog or tell people what aisle I’m in at the supermarket
    Each to their own though

  17. Lesley says:

    No worries Sarah. Glad I came through as “me”. Not keen on anon comments myself so not sure what happened at work comp

  18. Sarah, thank you! You have just listed most the reason I hesitated to tweet! I’m not good at it and felt ignored :), so why bother. I have been making connections on FB and are following those ladies and I will try it again. Sometimes I get so busy I forget about it too. and because of my initial impression I just haven’t tweeted much. My 2 or 3 blog posts per week auto post and since I don’t blog post everyday, I didn’t think that was over kill. Thanks for your perspective. I love your blog!
    Debbie