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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

How to build a brand on Twitter for FREE! (Part 1)

Twitter can be a little bit daunting when you first start using it. You just type some stuff and off it goes into the Internet for all to see. Wow, I just tweeted my lunch. Wow, I just tweeted my car accident. Wow, I just tweeted my break up with my boyfriend. You know how it goes.

But you get through the first couple of days and you've tweeted twenty things, all totally unrelated, and then you start staring at your screen. Nothing. Just a handful of followers and no one is replying back to you. Well what do you know? Like everything in life, it's all about branding. (If you're interested in building up a lot of Twitter followers read this post).

Why do I need a brand?
I'll state this once and simply: To maximize your following and legitimacy, you need a brand. If you have a large number of followers and a legitimate brand, people will take note of what you tweet and action on it (think: click your links!).

Finding your Twitter brand is a difficult but necessary thing to do to maximize your following. Me? I now write about books and blogging and publishing. That's my brand. When I first started on Twitter my brand was quotes and weird news stories, but I changed all that a couple of months ago. The important thing though is to have a brand. That way people know what you're Tweeting about. So just choose a passion, something that you can happily tweet about forever, and then stick to it. Of course, you can send the occasional tweet about something completely different, but for most part stick to your brand.

This articles is the first in a series that will cover:
  1. Where do I get my material from?
  2. How often should I tweet?
  3. How can I automate my Tweets?
  4. What about a blog?
  5. How do I pull the whole thing together?
So, let's get started on part 1:

Where do I get my material from?
If you're like most people, there is only so much relevant content you can make up for yourself on a daily basis. This means you're going to need to get more material from somewhere else. But where? The Internet of course. But the question still is, how do I get it? I use Google alerts. Go to and try setting some up. To start you can have the results emailed to you. (There are other ways to use Alerts and I shall be covering that in Part 3 - Automating). Use the Alert information that is emailed to you for writing Tweets. Another place is your favorite RSS feeds. You probably read this stuff already so use it and re-tweet it.

Experiment. Find out what works for you. Spend a few days tweeting about a topic you like and then refine it slightly until you're happy. Tomorrow we'll talk about the next step: 'How often should I Tweet?'


  1. Ahhh, thank you for this! As a neo-tweeto-phyte, I'm a little bit lost on twitter.

  2. Nice post. I've not had much luck, however, with Google Alerts. I tend to get information that I neither or need. Instead, I cull articles from Flipboard and Zite and save them to Pocket for reading later.

    Thanks for the post.

  3. We're already on Twitter, tweeting about Dorset, literature and publishing, as that's our 'brand'; your article is a good reminder to focus. I look forward to reading more. Thanks from Julie Musk at Roving Press