Twitter is an Endless Cocktail Party

So many crafty people tell me – ‘I love Facebook, but I just don’t GET twitter’!
You know, I understand. When you first look at Twitter – before you understand how it works – it can look a bit overwhelming.
But when it comes to getting your head around Twitter, there’s really only one thing you need to focus on.

Twitter is about conversation + connection. In small bursts.

I use the analogy of a cocktail party. Imagine the most enormous, endless cocktail party ever. It goes on as far as the eye can see, and it never stops.
If the thought of that terrifies you, just make sure you arrive with friends. So – when you first join Twitter, add people who you already have a relationship with, and start using it to talk to them. Just like a real cocktail party, once you arrive with your friends, you’ll all start out together, but slowly, as the night progresses, you’ll move out on your own.

While you’re at this party, you will drift between groups of people, dipping in and out of conversations as they interest you. You’ll share your thoughts, your insights, interesting bits of information you happen to know on the topic, maybe a joke or two, and you’ll mention what you’re up to.

You will never hear all the conversations that are going on at this party.

You will never ‘keep up’ with it all. But you will make your small contribution to the conversation that drives the party along and makes it fun to be at. This is exactly what Twitter is like.

It is not purely a broadcast medium, so don’t treat it this way (only tweeting your latest products etc). You will simply look like a spammer, and no-one will be interested in connecting with you.

Never be afraid to send someone a tweet. Anyone! Just imagine that you’ve spotted them across the room. You’re both at the same party, right?
HOWEVER, don’t ever, EVER spam someone – i.e. don’t tweet ‘come look at my blog/shop’ etc at them. That’s the equivalent to walking up to someone at a party and saying ‘hey, I think you’ll like what I make, do you want to buy some?’. You would never start a conversation at a party like that in a million years, right? So don’t do it online, either.

The best way to start, just as at a party, is to ‘walk’ up to them and say something nice – compliment them in some way to kick off the conversation in a positive light. Start with the focus on THEM.

You can either reply to something they’ve tweeted, or thank them for a great blog post/book/thing of theirs you’ve enjoyed. That is the best way to make an initial connection with someone.

Also – never try to ‘keep up’ with Twitter. This goes for all social media, really. Dip in and out regularly, but don’t try to read everything – you could spend your whole life on twitter if you tried to keep up!

Just like a great cocktail party, you’ll never be privy to all the conversations going on – but that’s okay! You’ll leave at the end of the night (hopefully) enriched by your conversation with other people, and with the knowledge that you’ve started a few new relationships, as well as growing old ones.

Jess Van Den
Create & Thrive

This post is an extract from Jess’ upcoming ebook A Create & Thrive Guide to Getting Started With Social Media. If you’ve been on the fence about diving into social media – like Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Google + or YouTube – to market your small creative biz, sign up here to find out when the ebook is released. You can also get daily crafty biz info and inspiration on the C&T Facebook Page here.

{image courtesy of Love From Ginger }


Follow along…
Today’s post is part of the series called Branding, Blogging & Social Media for the Handmade Business. For this week, fellow creatives will be sharing information for handmade businesses to succeed. You can follow along and get more details on the blog series here. Participating bloggers include: JWGInternationalStudioMME, Handmade Success & again JWGInternational.

Janet Walker has been a designer & internet marketer for over 16+ years. She established her creative biz on the 1st page of Google (+ other search engines) within a year of being online. Which led to international media coverage. Her analytical thinking, marketing know-how & break-it-down methodology, allows her to naturally align strategies, & more. She’s become the go-to for individuals, small & sought-after business leaders in various industries.  JWGInternational’s core is to empower, elevate & support those using their Gifts to impact others.

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