|Photo copyrighted by Lisa Nolan. You have my permission to pin on Pinterest.|
OK, maybe the date analogy isn't the best, but how would you describe your relationship with tweeting?
I must say, I had Twitter all wrong. And I'm just now realizing it, after how many years? Two, three, four?
Let me back up a bit: I started using Twitter many years ago as a widget on my website, as a way to communicate in real time with my visitors and my members who joined my site. (No, it wasn't an X-rated site! It was, still is, an educational website.) I thought it added some value, and it was new and kinda flashy, OK, not flashy, techy, yeah, techy. But it was all one way, with only me tweeting, no one tweeting back, and that was fine, back then.
But all this social media stuff kept growing, and GROWING: with Facebook, and LinkedIn, and Ning.com (remember Ning? I dropped them after they wanted to charge me money, how dare they!).
What else, blogs, a few at first, then more, now TONS. (I've been online since 1998, and maybe I did have an erotica site or two! I'll never tell!)
And now... Pinterest. But this is not about Pinterest, I got that pinning thang in what, ten minutes! I mean, I really got it!
But my long-term relationship with Twitter was still not going well.
I thought, maybe it's time to break up, I go my way, Twitter goes its way.
And yet, some how I was not ready to let go. I mean, we'd been together for such a long time!
Then, a few months ago, I read the self-help Kindle ebook The Toa of Twitter: Changing your life and business 140 characters at a time, by Mark Schaefer. It's a great read for Twitter newbies, I learned a lot more about the mechanics of Twitter, but it was mostly geared toward businesses. I have a business, don't get me wrong, but Twitter for my business educational website (and my blogs) was falling flat.
Maybe it was time to let go, move on, date other social media types, I mean apps.
Not too long after I read The Toa of Twitter, I decided to use it in a different way, thanks to tips from the book. On Oscar night, as I watched all the hoopla, I hash tagged #Ellen_Degeneres and #Oscars. OH BOY! I had the best time with other Twitterers, bashing the Oscars and loving Ellen's JC Penney commercials, because what was going on right about then? A group called Million Moms was pushing a boycott of JC Penney because Ellen was their new ad girl. How 2008 is that! Where have these moms been, Ellen is in! Gay bashing is out, it's so... yesterday!
Well, I had the best time! But it had nothing to do with my business (as in increasing memberships) or my blogs (as in gaining more blog traffic) or even increasing my Kindle book sales. It was just a fun group date with Twitter!
So back to my issue with Twitter and whether I should break up with it and go my own way.
Still, not one to give up so easily, I tried another suggestion from the book and I clicked on one of my Twitter lists and started reading all the tweets (which I did before but with a different list). This time it was my Writers and Writing list. I laughed so hard at all the tweets from these talented peeps, and replied in kind.
I had a blast. (If you don't have a Twitter "list of writers", start one right now, seriously, if you get nothing out of this long Twitter rant... at least get that.)
Again, I had fun, I felt connected, it was a two-way street, peeps tweeting back and forth to each other... but there was no gain in sales or traffic or even followers. Hmmm...
What gives, Twitter?!
Now for the good part.
First, I have to give credit to Larry Lourcey @larryphoto on TwiTip.com for writing the post "Now Accepting Applications for Human Followers".
After I read Larry's blog post, I finally got what Twitter was all about, and what Twitter is NOT all about: it's not meant to be an announcement board, a one-way relationship.
Oh, how could I have been so selfish! I was the problem, tweeting my blog posts, my pins, other people's blog posts... There was no back and forth, no two-way conversations, in a nutshell, it was all about ME.
Sorry, Twitter. Can we start over? I promise to not let it be all about me. Truly.
All humor aside... Twitter is a social media tool for being SOCIAL.
I was not acting like an actual human "looking to interact". But instead, I was "just another broadcaster looking for one-way conversations." (Quotes from Larry's post).
Dear me, I mean dear Twitter.
I'm sticking it out. I'm mending my ways, I'm running out of cliches.
I will no longer use Twitter to make announcements (unless I win the lottery, LOL). I will use it as a two-way conversation with my peeps (especially those brazen writers!). No more "it's all about me" tweets.
Welcome back, Twitter, welcome back.
Will work for comments! Please leave a comment on my Facebook page, thanks!