Twitter is a powerful, real-time platform for conversations to take place between you and the community you build. With a number of nuances, it’s essential to understand the unique etiquette and guidelines that apply in order to use the platform effectively. Unlike Facebook, Twitter is embraced as a public forum where information that’s shared can potentially be seen by anyone, so it’s imperative to your social media well-being to always be aware of what you share. When you build your followers on Twitter, it’s considered good etiquette to engage with people you're genuinely interested in, instead of following users for the sake of following. It’s also a good idea to keep in mind that quality prevails over quantity. Engaging with a handful of people who find your content relevant can gain you more followers than following a multitude users who don’t. Let’s say you work in the tech industry. By selectively following a few tech enthusiasts, you can engage with them and keep up with the latest developments in your industry. Your Twitter followers look to you to provide information that you genuinely find valuable, so it’s recommended that you contribute content that is interesting and worth sharing. As your followers may be following hundreds or thousands of other users, it’s important that you to keep in mind how much you share. Retweeting other people’s content is a great way to show others that you’re listening to what they have to say. However, you’ll want to keep in mind to share a good balance of retweeted content as well as original content. Hashtags are used to group together the same keywords, trends or topics in tweets. They can also be used to provide additional context to your message, like adding #hearthealth when tweeting your favourite nutritious recipe. When using hashtags, it’s recommended that you understand what they mean to avoid including those which may be controversial or inappropriate. You’ll also want to be aware of how many hashtags you’re using as well as their relevance. Using excessive or irrelevant hashtags can detract from your message and may confuse your audience. It can be easy to become impersonal quickly, so when engaging, it’s a good idea to treat your followers as individuals. Say a tweet you shared becomes very popular and your followers are retweeting it like wildfire. Instead of responding to everyone with a generic ‘Thank you’, personalize their tweet. By personalizing their experience, they may be more likely to share your content and encourage others to follow you. Due to its timely nature, Twitter users may expect responses quicker than those on Facebook and LinkedIn. While it isn’t mandatory to respond to someone’s tweet immediately, it can be considered poor etiquette to delay your response for a long period of time. So when you’re attending to mentions or direct messages, it’s a good idea to be mindful of your response time. Unless you set your account to ‘private’, once you publish something on Twitter, it’s immediately visible to the public. Say you’re chatting with a potential employer from your personal Twitter account. You may want to take the conversation to a direct message if you plan to share any sensitive or personal details, like email addresses or company information.

So remember ..…

When building your follower base, quality should prevail over quantity

Share and retweet information that you personally find valuable - Don’t spam

Don’t overuse or misuse hashtags

Treat your followers as individuals and personalize your messages

Reply in a timely nature when possible

Use Direct Messages when exchanging sensitive information.