Many of us who are aspiring to grow within the Search Engine Marketing community are often of the lookout for cool ideas to share and spread throughout the social world and chat with random people. When I first got to Twitter about two years ago, I spent more time perusing through other users posts and information in hope that we could have some common ground and I could begin to gain some substantial followers. Over time Twitter turned in to a platform where instead of being an individual I was stealing ideas from others and making it be known to the public. All of my tweets were re-tweets from thought leaders that went largely unnoticed because I had done nothing to establish myself as a viable voice in the community.
Fast forward to the present and I now feel like I have reached a point where becoming that viable voice is now a reality. With dreams of becoming a thought leader in the SEM community, it has become obvious to me that Twitter is more than a public forum where people are shouting over each other at all times. Twitter is a global community where is easy to get trapped amongst the masses, but also easy to stand out my making a few small adjustments.
Now comes the time where we have to use our heads a little bit, as being unique in a community like Twitter can often involve a bit of risk. What we want to do is be a little bit different from everybody else while maintaining a positive reputation and not letting our ‘unique’ antics create a negative association through the eyes of our followers and potential followers.
One of the most basic steps I can think of, and something that has had quite the positive outcome for me as of late, is taking the time to personalize your re-tweets.
First, please tell me that you are not the kind of person who sees an article from a thought leader and assumes the content. The first thing we must do is take the time to actually READ what is being shared and crunch the information in to our own individual perception.
As most of you know, the world of Search Engine Marketing is something that changes daily. People often have ideas and theories, but not everything works. Without a strong community of thinkers the industry in which we live would not exist. Progression in Internet Marketing involves putting a personal spin on public information.
Think of it this way. How often do you see an article re-tweeted by a number of people in the community and notice that every single tweet sharing that article looks the same, just with a different username attached? For me, this number is pretty high. No think about how much a stagnant, repeated topic can generate conversation. Everybody who is sharing the article is sharing it in the same form with no commentary other than the original content.
What we have the ability to do by adding short commentary to our re-tweets is generate discussion. Discussion in the Twitter community is what leads to strong relationships.
So this is my proposal to everybody in the world. Let’s try to never simply re-tweet an article or any piece of content that craves discussion. Let’s add small notes here and there when we have the chance and see who we can get riled up, interested, and conversational.
There is no doubt in my mind that taking the time to read articles, understand the content, and challenge their ideas will lead to more productive interactions in Twitter. More productive interactions lead to more solidified relationships, and more solidified relationships lead to the expansion of your social network.
There is a lot to be said for putting in a little extra time. Twenty minutes today could mean an infinite amount of possibilities tomorrow.