Twitter Profile Setup:
It's easy to sign up for an account on Twitter, but to create a professional and easy-to-find profile takes a little more effort. Follow this checklist to ensure your profile is optimized for the Twittersphere.
- Using your real name will help customers, the media and influencers recognize you. Pick a username that is easy to remember and is not cumbersome to make it easy for followers to tag you.
- Choose a profile picture that represents you. A professional headshot is ideal, but if you want to be personable and creative, using a personal photo is fine. Like your name and Twitter handle, it's best to make your profile picture identifiable as it will appear alongside your tweets.
- With Twitter you can also add a header image, like a Facebook cover photo, which allows for more personality. It will only be visible when someone views your profile.
- Your bio is only 160 characters including spaces, so make it count. List your title and role in the bank, your bank name (if your bank has a Twitter presence, you may include its Twitter handle) and a quick phrase about you.
- Be sure to include a relevant link with your bio, if you want to direct people to your bank, be sure to include your bank’s URL. Some people choose to link back to a LinkedIn profile or another professional website.
- Make sure to turn on mobile or email notifications or download the Twitter app on your phone. You can set the system to notify you of direct messages, mentions, new follows, and more. There are also third-party applications such as Hootsuite and Tweetdeck that allow you to keep an eye on certain topics and Twitter accounts. This will allow you to monitor conversations and people that are important to you.
Getting started on Twitter can be intimidating given its nuanced vocabulary and culture. Here are some simple suggestions to help you tweet with confidence.
- Mentions (@): If you want to call out someone on Twitter by mentioning or replying to them, use the “@” symbol. The symbol automatically creates a link to the Twitter handle that follows it, which creates exposure for the person.
- Retweets (RT): Twitter retweets are forwarded messages that basically mimic word of mouth. Follow interesting news sources or influential people in your community and retweet content your followers would like. Keep in mind: fresh content will encourage others to follow you.
- Hashtag (#): Hashtags link together relevant conversations by topic and make it easy to find specific topics you’re interested in; link conversations for easier discussion searches; and give tweets more exposure using similar key words.
- To find relevant hashtags, use the search box and see what kinds of conversations come up (i.e., #smallbiz, #economy).
- Link shortening: To fit long links into 280-character tweets, simply copy and paste them into a tweet and Twitter automatically shortens them for you. There are also services such as bit.ly to help shorten, track and maintain the links that you share. Once entering a link into bit.ly, you may copy and paste into your tweet.