There are so may stats, reports, assumptions and speculations every day about who is using Twitter, let alone how and why. I recently read a reflection on Twitter called How To Use Twitter When You Follow Several Thousand People. And it got me thinking, not necessarily about how I filter through the stream and so forth, but how others who are filtering through their streams, find me!
I’m not the only one that is follow lots of interesting, valuable, fun people on Twitter – so are many of you! So, how do I create ways for people to pick up on my content or shared learning in ways that is visible (and not just sucked into the stream)? How do I ensure that the stream I’m creating, isn’t overwhelming as well?
With these questions in mind, I decided to start a second Twitter account – and I want to share with you my strategy and implementation steps – so you can see if something similar is right for you, too!
Why Create Two Accounts
My Twitter account is @AmyRSWard and I have, currently, over 3,000 followers. I’m not one for popularity and don’t view follower counts as a reflection of such. I think that at one time or another, those 3,000+ people found an interesting link I shared, read a blog post I wrote and wanted to get more, or connected with me in one way or another online, at a conference, or through email. The way I see it, those 3,000 people are “following” the content or value I can add to their work, not necessarily my coolness.
But, I’m human! Not everything I say is smart, valuable, insightful or useful. Sometimes I just want to say, “hi” to my mom on Twitter, and that’s okay. But for people who don’t want to follow everything I say, and really just want real-time access to my shared brain, well, why not them have it!
Purpose of @AmySampleWard
As I explained above, the purpose of the second account, @AmySampleWard, is to provide a pipeline to valuable content. I intend to use this second account for three main things:
- Sharing links to posts as they go up: Whenever a new post goes up on this blog, a tweet with the title and link will go out!
- Sharing links to interesting things I read: Whenever I tag something using Delicious that I think is of interest to you all, a tweet with the title and link will go out!
- Livetweeting and Twitter-chats: If I go to a conference or an event or am participating in a Twitter-based chat, I always think about the tweet-overload I create for people who follow me as my messages go from # of tweets per day, to # of tweets per hour or minute. This way I will have a separate account to use for following a conference session or speaker, etc.
Set Up of @AmySampleWard
I have to give tons of credit to Joe Solomon, my friend and colleague and rockstar, for his help getting me set up. I asked for his advise (he’s the man behind @nptechblogs among other Twitter mutations) as there are TONS of tools out there to choose from when setting up an account. So, the steps below are generated from Joe’s smarts as well as my applications.
Sharing links from your blog:
I used TwitterFeed to set this up. It’s really simple. Just put in the RSS feed of your blog, and then use the Advanced Options to add a preface or suffix to your posts (this is where you could say, as I do, “New post:” or something). As Joe advised, and I TOTALLY agree, be sure to select the option to show only the Title & Link – as including any more means a really jumbled tweet.
Sharing links you tag onling:
I use Delicious to tag content online instead of saving bookmarks locally to my computer – this way I can access things I’ve saved from any computer and can share content easily. Using Twitter to share is just one more option! If you do not already use Delicious, it’s easy to get started – visit the site for more. I used TwitterFeed again to coordinate auto-tweets of items I tag. I used the RSS feed of a specific tag, because I didn’t necessarily want every single item I bookmark to be tweeted out. This let’s me choose which items to share.
We’re in Business!
So, the new account is all set up! It’s already tweeting out blog posts, interesting links, and more. Follow it here!
What do you think? I’d love your feedback on my strategy and process – if you would have done things differently or if you have questions about how I’m making it work!