It’s quite easy to be under the impression that if you are on twitter then you must tweet but we suggest that you begin by being a committed follower or ‘lurker’ as they are sometimes termed. To begin with try following these groups of people: –
Your clients, prospects and suspects: you can find out which of your clients, prospects and suspects tweet by either looking on LinkedIn or putting their name into Google with the word “Twitter” next to it. It is a good idea to check whether the client company also has a twitter account because increasingly companies are using Twitter as a way of publishing news and making announcements.
Your competitors: if you follow a competitor that person is informed of the fact, but if you place them in a list they are not. If you want to see what your competitors are up to but you don’t want them to know you are keeping an eye on them just create a private list called “Competitors” and add them to it.
Journalists: following journalists not only gives you access to interesting content but also gives you the opportunity to develop a relationship with a journalist and perhaps look for opportunities to get your profile in the media, but be careful to not bombard them as this will have the opposite effect. Local journalists are always useful to promote local events and companies.
Top tweeters: these are people who produce tweets that are consistently useful to you. It might be somebody in your particular field or who is prominent in the markets that your clients are in or maybe even thought-leaders in business or technology. Whatever their usage they are consistently producing material that you can get some value from.
But how do you actually find these people? Well there are various ways.
The easiest way is by using the social media buttons that people have on their blogs, websites and email signatures to take you straight through to their twitter page, but sometimes life isn’t that easy.
If you’re trying to find a client or prospect then as I mentioned earlier it’s a good idea to use Google or LinkedIn. Of course, if they have a common name you might have to add other keywords but if they have a twitter account they should appear.
You can also use the search box on the twitter menu bar, simply type in the name of the person or company you wish to find and search. To filter the results click on ‘People’ to the left hand side and this will show you all of the accounts.
Twitter also have their own way to recommend people for you to follow. Click on ‘# Discover’ on the top menu bar and select ‘Who to follow’ from the menu to the left. This will look into who you currently follow and suggest others that twitters thinks is suitable.
There are also several online twitter directories that you can browse through to find people who match your interests. Directories, we like are Twellow and WeFollow. Once you have a tweet history you could also add yourself to these directories allowing others to find and also follow you too.