Twitter Give and Take

twitter-whale
If you’ve been reading our series on getting started with Twitter — you can read part one about finding users to follow and “lurking” here and part two about setting an account here — then you may already be tweeting and gaining followers.The key to building momentum on Twitter is to engage in a dialogue rather than simply broadcasting your own updates to the world at large. Here are a few guidelines to keep in mind as you start to grow your Twitter presence:

1. Follow to lead.
Unless you’re James Franco or the CIA, you probably won’t gain a huge Twitter following the second you join the social network. Following people or organizations you’re interested in will often lead them to follow you back. This is the quickest and easiest way to gain followers.

2. Watch your follower: following ratio.
An oft-cited rule of thumb for people or brands with crowds of followers is to follow at least 10 percent as many Twitterers as the size of their audience. This keeps an account from looking like a “broadcaster” and makes it easier to find interesting missives to retweet.

3. Share the wealth.

Try retweeting or “favoriting” (click the star icon) someone else’s Tweet for every Tweet of your own. When you do this, you’re sharing something great with your own network — and theirs! This is yet another way to gain followers.4. Remember that less can be more.

Twitter can be addictive, but resist the temptation to share every detail of your day or the latest celebrity gossip. Recounting what you had for breakfast could bore your audience and even cause some users to stop following you.
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