My Trouble With Twitter


Oh, Twitter.

I just don’t like you.

I’m fully aware that I should use you to promote myself and my writing, especially if I want to be a freelance writer, but I just don’t like you, and I don’t understand you.

So, I guess, to better understand you I should start with the basics and then maybe, just maybe, I won’t dislike you so much.

People use Twitter for all kinds of things– to connect with friends and family, to follow sports and entertainment, to get news, and to express themselves, among other things.

I get that. I do. But I can do that just as easily on Facebook.

I think a part of my problem with Twitter may be that I started out on Facebook and as a not-so-technologically-savvy person, I don’t like changing up my social media habits.

Anyway, I have a long way to go before my Twitter account resembles that of a top brand.  For instance, top brands Tweet about 10 times a day (haha, I have a long way to go here) and really engage with their followers.  The more brands engage, of course, the more they grow.  According to a study done by the Simply Measured Blog, 58% of top brands have more than 100,000 followers. And I only have, I think, 15 followers… (In my defense, I only got Twitter to follow bands I like.)

Aside from growing my brand on Twitter, it would be worthwhile for me as a writer to use the site for story ideas.  For instance, this isn’t a groundbreaking story, but I could write a story about the most popular TV or Netflix shows on campus. (Because I am obsessed with Twin Peaks and it is coming back in May, I’m super interested in finding out if anyone else likes it. All I want to do is talk about it, but I don’t have anyone to do this with!) It would be interesting to see if students watch popular shows, like Game of Thrones or Gilmore Girls, or if they watch off-the-wall shows, like Twin Peaks.

Umm… and another not-exactly-deep-but-nevertheless-interesting story I could write is about music on campus.  It would be similar to the television one.  What kind of music do people listen to? It is it predominantly country, rap, alternative, rock, etc.? Is it popular music in its genre or is it under the radar? (As I scroll through my feed, almost every single thing I see is about a band I like, a member from a band I like, books, or Twin Peaks.

Ah, finally! Here’s an idea that has a little more substance to it: SCOTUS nominee Neil Gorsuch. I could research him, what he stands for, and what people are saying about him on Twitter.  To localize it, I could ask students on campus if they have heard of him or if they even know what the Supreme Court does and how influential it it. (I hope to God they do, but you never know.)

So far, I can honestly say I haven’t learned much from Twitter, though I did just learn that Twitter is a good place to get story ideas.

No matter how much I dislike Twitter, I hope I learn to value it and use it productively because I obviously don’t now.  I mean, I’ve had Twitter since 2013, and I’ve only Tweeted seven original Tweets. The most interaction I’ve had is one Retweet. (Don’t judge me. Please.)

From here on out, I’m going to try to use best practices on Twitter in order to get my writing more visible. This means I’m going to personal with my (few) followers, use the power of now, and avoid using caps lock because it’s apparently OBNOXIOUS OR SOMETHING. (If I could insert a smiling emoji here, I would.)

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