I started tweeting more than 7 months and 363 tweets ago. My twitter name is @AirthreyLtd, and I hold the account jointly with my business partner, Dr Alasdair Rutherford. We currently have 83 followers (growing slowly but steadily) and follow 58 others.
I was initially sceptical about Twitter, put off by the celebrity culture associated with it (no, I still don’t follow Stephen Fry, much as I admire him) and the cliché of tweeting what one had for breakfast (which, of course, nobody does...)
I overcame my prejudices when I saw the business potential. Twitter is one of a range of online channels my company, Airthrey, uses to market itself and its services. Before we began, we planned exactly how we were going to use this channel (and therefore, what we were not going to do).
I scan Twitter for learning evaluation stuff to pass on. That means I repeat standard saved searches daily, and tend to follow others who often have something to say about evaluation, and then retweet the good stuff.
Initially I was puzzled by the number of users who followed @AirthreyLtd for a few days then unfollowed. Eventually, I worked out that they expected me to follow them back and reacted when I didn’t (the less scrupulous would have unfollowed me anyway, as they built up their follower base with those they had no intention of continuing to follow). Ingénue that I was, I didn’t even know of the existence of tools like tweetadder that automate this process! (Further info here.)
So I’m not losing sleep over not sticking to conventional Twitter etiquette. If you’ve followed @AirthreyLtd in the expectation of being followed back, but we haven’t, it’s not because we’re being rude, it’s because you don’t meet our simple criterion – you don’t tweet about evaluation. Sorry.
I’d be interested to hear about other people’s Twitter experiences. Note that however useful the 140 character limit discipline is, it doesn’t allow a lengthier explanation like this – but at least now I can direct people to one.