Setting Up Your Supercharged Twitter Account

2nd in a Series of Twitter Articles

Ready to get your feet wet and start tweeting? It has always been FREE to set up and use a Twitter account. All you need is an email address. So why not start today? Here’s everything you need to know about setting up your own supercharged Twitter account.

Username
Choose a username that is professional—either your name or your business name. Your username will appear with the ‘@’ symbol in front of it. For example, my Twitter handle is @PreciseProofing. If the name you’d like to use is already taken, create a variation of your name. Sometimes adding an underscore (_) to your username is enough to set yourself apart.

Profile/Bio
This is a professional description of you or your business. Be sure to use keywords in your profile (words that might be entered into a search engine) so that followers can easily find your Twitter feed. You can also use hashtags to make your bio more searchable. (I’ll discuss hashtags in the next article.) Oh, and don’t forget to have your profile proofread or edited. Nothing is more embarrassing and unprofessional than a few typos in your bio.

Tweet Privacy
If you want to acquire more business and more followers, don’t make them jump through hoops. Here’s where a lot of businesses go wrong. As a business person, your goal should be to reach as many potential clients as possible. If you select the privacy option, potential followers will be required to wait for your approval before they can see your tweets or follow you. Personally, if I’m interested in joining in on the conversation and I have to wait for approval, I immediately think that this company must not be in the business of creating more business and I click away. Think of a retail store requiring identification for every customer who walks through the door. Crazy, huh? It’s the same concept online. Save the Tweet privacy option if you are opening a personal Twitter account and only want your approved friends to see your Tweets.  Otherwise, leave your account public.

Profile Photo
Be sure the photo you choose is clean and professional. Some businesses use their company logo, while others may use a photo of the person doing the tweeting (usually the business owner).

A few things to keep in mind when selecting a photo:

  • Choose a simple photo or logo that is easily viewable at thumbnail size. A complicated logo or busy photo won’t be discernible at a smaller size.
  • People often respond better to a personal photo rather than a generic photo or a company logo. This often holds true for small- to medium-sized businesses. Be sure that your photo is a clean, professional head shot. And look happy—remember, you want followers and clients coming to you.

Background
Create a custom Twitter background that coordinates with your website and your brand. Twitter provides several free backgrounds to choose from, however businesses should think of Twitter as an extension of their website. No matter where your customers find you—whether it’s on Twitter, Facebook, your website, etc.—you’ll want them to see your branding and you’ll want be easily identifiable.

Get Your Tweets on the Go
Enter your mobile phone number to receive and compose tweets, and get notifications on the go. Mobile apps are available for iPhone, iPad, Android, BlackBerry, and Windows Phone 7. This way, you’ll never miss an opportunity to jump into the conversation.

If you liked this, you might also like…

Twitter: How to Tweet in 140 Characters or Less

Twitter: If You Don’t Tweet Now, You’ll Hate Yourself Later

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