Top 10 Tips for an Effective Twitter Profile


Please welcome guest blogger Phyllis Zimbler Miller.

The purpose of the brief Twitter profile is to encourage people to follow you or to follow back if you have followed the person first.

What’s the most important tip for having an effective Twitter profile? Make it easy to read and make it interesting.

Let’s break this down into 10 specific tips:

  1. Put your real name in the field that says name and make sure to put a space between your first and last name so that you are more easily searchable on Twitter.  Also, it looks better to capitalize the first letter of your first and last name.
  2. It’s preferable NOT to use _ in your Twitter username. But do use capitalization when you create your username.  (People can type lowercase and still get you.)  It is easier to read, for example, @ZimblerMiller than @zimblermiller
    (@Sally_K learned this the hard way) 😉
  3. Write something in first person in the 160-character limit for the bio and make this something of interest that would encourage people to connect with you.  Not only (as I just saw) “Is tweeter a word?”
  4. Because very little of the one hot link shows in the Twitter profile, check that your link will work without the www. and, again, capitalize the first letter of each word in your URL to make it easier to read.  (FYI – If you don’t have your own website or blog, link to your Facebook business page or your LinkedIn profile.)
  5. In terms of which one link you use — on Twitter it is considered good etiquette to make connections first and only then present your offers (read “sales pitches”) so consider using the URL to your blog if you have one rather than the URL to your website where your products or services are sold.
  6. Use a headshot of yourself rather than a company logo even if you are head of a company with lots of employees.  People like to connect with real people.  And make it a headshot without sunglasses or a hat covering your eyes.  Plus a smile is always a good idea.
  7. Please, please, please follow this piece of advice: Do NOT choose a dark color for your profile sidebar.  In almost all cases it is impossible to read the bio info against the dark color.  I don’t even bother to try – I don’t follow that person back.
  8. Do tweet one or two interesting tweets before you start following people. Use this as an opportunity to let people know a little more about you than what you have in the bio.  Do NOT make these first tweets selling pitches.
  9. Do make changes in the standard Twitter profile background.  You do not need to spend money on getting a customized background.  But do at least change colors (except for NO dark sidebar color) and do a little tweaking so that you don’t have the standard Twitter background that screams “newbie.”
  10. Do share valuable information in your tweets through links to blog posts (yours and others) to demonstrate that you are a committed Twitter participant.

And if you find yourself spending too much time on Twitter, here’s a tip I learned from someone else:  Set an alarm clock to remind yourself when your allotted time for Twitter is over.

Phyllis Zimbler Miller (@ZimblerMiller on Twitter) has an M.B.A. from The Wharton School and is the co-founder of the social media marketing company Miller Mosaic Power Marketing.  For social media marketing info see the company’s Facebook page

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