Twitter is an important social network because it is a great way to connect, build your network and show some personality. But, there is a line between personal and professional.
Most of the time, Twitter accounts are public pages that anyone can see. (Think potential employers, professors, colleagues, etc.). It’s a fun social networking platform, but it is an extension of yourself, which ultimately, is your online image.
If any of the “signs” below apply to you, you may need to tweak your Twitter.
1. Your bio could get you mistaken for a spam Twitter account.
“Smile once a day and it will all be okay ;)”
“Partying is what I do”
“UD girl living and loving *<3*”
Ok, I made those up, but they definitely resemble some bios I’ve seen! For a website that only lets you type 140-character messages, Twitter is generous with its header space. Use it to your advantage! Upload an appropriate head shot and background picture. In your bio, include specific information about yourself. You can mix some professional facts like where you go to school, your major, your internship title, and some personal information, like you love the Phillies. Use this to let people know what kind of things you will tweet about.
With a good bio, whoever’s looking at your page will see what makes you stand out and learn some solid background information. Don’t let them know too much, though.
2. Your followers know your party routine from your tweets.
Glaring grammar and spelling errors in tweets late at night, posting about partying and bars or retweeting “party” accounts are signs that you’re party-tweeting. It’s fine to party, but leave tweeting out of it. Partying is too personal for Twitter. If a potential employer finds your Twitter page through Google, it does not look good.
3. You only follow and retweet accounts like I’m Shmacked, UD Makeoutz and Condescending Wonka.
Who you follow says a lot about you, especially if you retweet or favorite their tweets. There are reporters, industry leaders, politicians, companies and knowledgeable people/brands pushing out information all day – for free! Just click to follow them, and you will have a constant feed of information that’s important and relevant to you. Plus, it looks good to follow a variety of people.
4. It’s all about you.
a) “Got home at 4 a.m. with 3 bruises and a cracked #iPhone #oopsididitagain!”
b) “Just slipped on the ice #ow #slippery #fml”
c) “OMG can’t wait for Saturday! @ally435 #weekendfun”
d) “donuts are such a good breakfast #noshame”
Some fixes that are beneficial to followers and make you look more intelligent:
a) Starting my day at 7 this morning, waking up an extra 10 minutes early is productive according to NYTimes (cool article here)
b) Can’t believe there’s already ice to slip on, (link to interesting weather story)
c) Looking forward to the PR conference this Saturday @everyone you know that’s going/want to meet (yes, #weekendfun meant PR conference)
d) Stopped by @CafeVentana for a donut, they have done a great job re-branding. See my review here (link)
Keep your audience in mind when you tweet. Use Twitter as an opportunity to give an opinion on something worthy, show knowledge about a topic, or share something interesting or useful – like a great article or something you wrote. Also connect to others my mentioning them, retweeting and favoriting tweets. Others could be companies you want to work for, potential mentors, someone you’re trying to stay in touch with, etc.
I wish you happy tweaking and careful tweeting.
How would you fix those tweets, or some of your own? What Twitter tweaks can you make?
By: Danielle Brody
Danielle is a senior mass communication major with minors in journalism and Spanish studies. She is an oral communication fellow and works at the Office of Donor Relations. Yes, she is open to tweaking suggestions – tweet or follow her @dbny23.
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