Twitter gives birth to relationships.
I absolutely and positively love Twitter. There are fantastic tips all over the interwebs on how this powerful social media tool can enable you to create your ideal network, define your brand, and learn heaps of awesome stuff along the way.
Most of all, though, I love the impact of Twitter on relationships.
You find people who share your passion and start interacting with them. You follow similar lists, have conversations, support one another, make each other laugh, and tweet happily into the cyberspace. Relationships are born. The whole thing is borderline obsessive and highly self-gratifying. You even find yourself tweeting more frequently than you'd like to admit. Nothing new here so far for us. I do it and love it too just as much as the next person.
But Twitter isn't quite enough to build out strong, lasting relationships. You should not miss out on opportunities that start in Twitter but can go so much further beyond the Twitter “walls”. Use Twitter as a compliment to other tools and strategies as you build these invaluable relationships in this amazing human network.
8 Quick Tips on Enhancing Your Twitter-Inspired Relationships
How do you take things to the next level with your newbie Tweeps, friends, peeps, online buddies, or whatever affectionate term you may wish to use, and how to you turn followers into fans who support you and do the same for them in return? Here are the best 8 ways I have done this, and continue to do this every day simply because it works.
1. Check out their work: If they have one, check out their blog, read their About page to learn more about who they are, and leave a thoughtful comment on a post you enjoyed in such a way that you add value and continue the dialogue. When you do this, the blog owner takes note that you are above the average reader who stops by to consume information. They may even contact you for posting for them in the future.
2. Drop them an email: Go to their Contact page and send a personal email. Tell them why you like their work and why you like to make a connection. Mention your Twitter connection and add something else that they have done that warranted this email communication. Be sincere. For instance, here are some of the good ones I have received: “I listened to your BlogastFM interview and what you said about communicating with style really helped me….” or “I really learned a lot from reading your last post on procrastination and also have enjoyed our Twitter relationship.”
3. Connect on LinkedIn: LinkedIn is a powerhouse of professionals and the best investment of your time for networking if you are serious about building a business around your blogging. Connect on LinkedIn by sending a personal invite and if you know the person well, offer to write them a LinkedIn recommendation, especially if you have words of praise and know of their unique strengths and skills.
4. Offer to write a guest post: If you read their blog often and especially if they are a smaller blogger than you, offer to write a guest post for them and help promote it (on Twitter of course!). Offer to help those who are both behind and ahead of you on their blogging path; both relationships can be beyond rewarding. Do it all willingly, with sincerity, and without expecting anything in return.
5. Use Skype to meet up: If you have a good reason to connect, then offer to have a chat on Skype, and even get to see each other on video to make a deeper connection. Have a shared purpose in mind to give the casual chat a better sense of direction. For instance, say you are going to share your blogging tips, or offer to help them on a problem they mentioned on Twitter, or discuss a common challenge you are facing or just to get to know one another.
6. Send them some link-love: Mention them in your blog post as appropriate and recommend them to your readers for their unique strength, skill, ability to make a difference for others sharing the same passion as both of you. Be specific when you do all of this so that it is not a generic praise so much as it is something specific that they did which you find useful and worthy of sharing and spreading.
7. Support them: No matter how big or small your favorite Tweeps may be, they will have a bad day, something will unfortunately go wrong in their life just as it does in all of ours, and they are likely to tweet about it. Show your support. Give them a moral boost. Offer to help. Give a suggestion or a recommendation. Be there. They will notice.
8. Meet and greet in person during your travels: You can even go so far as to meeting them. I live to travel and recently, I was so fortunate to meet tons of bloggers at Blogworld in Las Vegas and New York and World Domination Summit in Portland but beyond that, I go out of my way to meet my blogging buddies during my travels. For instance, I met up with Celestine Chua in Singapore, Raam Dev in Boston, Nathalie Lussier in Toronto, Mars Dorian in Berlin, Arvind Devalia in London, and many more. These in-person meetings have entirely changed the face of our relationship and a beautiful friendship is now born of that initial connection online. As my friend Sandi Amorim, whom I met at WDS, likes to say:
It's like old friends meeting for the first time.
Number 8 above is my all-time favorite way of taking my relationships on Twitter to a whole new level.
These tips have helped me build out my invaluable relationships beyond Twitter and while Twitter continues to be the main medium on which we communicate and keep tabs on each other, the greater bond has formed when I applied one or more of these tips.
What do you think? Do you believe in keeping a relationship to its scale on Twitter or do you pursue a higher level of connection with some of your favorite Tweeps, and if so, how do you do it?