Please Don’t Do That On Twitter

I have been on Twitter for years now. I have made a lot of new friends, connections and networked with many in my industry. Twitter has taught me a lot about how to communicate in social media and helped me get what ever message I wanted out to the world.

Certain Twitter methods can yield great results for you and your brand. However, there are methods that can prove to be detrimental. Methods that annoy users and consequently discourage users from interacting with you and your brand, enable users to stop following you, or in the extreme cases, these detrimental methods could lead to you being reported and shut down.

This is what I’m going to focus on, the detrimental. I will focus on some methods that you should not employ while on Twitter. (Incidentally, these methods make me really annoyed too.)

Blast/Burst Posting:
Blast posting is posting tweets anywhere from every 30 seconds to every 2 minutes. Yes, Twitter is all about real time updating, however, it needs to be done in moderation. If you blast post, it becomes difficult for your followers to read what else is going on in the world from other users. Followers become annoyed and develop a negative perception of you or your brand. Burst posting is similar to blast. Bursting is posting 3-5± tweets within a small time frame (like two minutes or so), then waiting a bit, then doing it again. Followers feel the same about burst posting as they do blast.

Spam:
This is a no brainer. Do not spam, at all, period. Spam on Twitter usually comes in the form of a user that follows you in the hope you follow them back to read all their advertisement tweets from some sort of API they have developed. Common spam users will offer “how to get more followers,” “check out my pics,” or “how to make money tweeting.” Users on Twitter tend to be ‘seekers’ of information. They seek out the info they want from users that provide it. If they wanted to learn how to make money tweeting, they will follow you, not the other way around.

Negativity:
Typically, the overall vibe on Twitter is a happy one. No one likes it when you put someone down, argue with other users or whatever. People who are negative on Twitter are not completely called out about it, but they do become quarantined from other users. Your Twitter profile is an extension of yourself or your brand. To remain positive in any and all circumstances will result in a positive association of yourself or your brand.

Check Out My Blog:
Another annoying bit of Twitter is when users, who are either added by you or add you themselves, direct message you to check out their blog or website. “Hi, nice to meet you. Check out my site.” I can’t tell you how many people tell me to do that. Again, Twitter users are seekers of information, they will seek the info out if they want to. Especially, when most likely, that information will be in your profile anyway. When you message someone on Twitter, make it as personable as possible. Which leads me to the next annoyance.

Scheduled/Auto Tweets:
Scheduling your tweets can take away a sense of personality to your Twitter profile. I’m not saying that services like Hootsuite are all bad, quite the opposite. What I am saying is, using automatic tweets only for your profile’s tweets becomes detrimental when trying to develop an audience of followers. Followers like the interaction, they hunger for it. It is ok to, at times, use tweet schedulers for relaying informational links and product launches. However, solely using schedulers, auto responders, and auto tweets separates you from your followers and thus the message becomes lost in a sea of information.

Bots:
Twitter bots, oh man, these are nasty little programs. They vary in their application. Sometimes they show up if you tweet a certain word and they retweet you or send you a direct message. Other times they seek you out based upon your tweets and profile to send you specific messages for their advertisers. These bots become annoying and reflect negatively on anything they tweet about. Let’s say, I tweet about Obama. I will get a retweet about Obama with a link inside it. And let’s say, I get four retweets about that. That becomes annoying and congestive. Also, since they are retweeting me, my followers get annoyed. Again, Twitter is a land of seekers, if they want the info, they’ll find it.

So, there is the list. Yes, most of these annoy me a great deal. But, I’d like to think it’s a good look into what not to do in the Twitter world. Keep this in mind: remain positive, encourage interaction and be personable.

Type: Put the Sans back into Comic Sans

Yes, I hate Comic Sans. Most serious graphic designers do. The reason I brought this topic up, is I just ran across a friend’s website that used Comic Sans on every page and yes, I think I did just threw up a bit in my mouth.

I have nothing against decorative typefaces, however I do have something against typefaces that are made specifically to “make people happy” or when they use it or to have “something different” — when that is the only reason for the birth of the ugly. How about this, try out Garamond? Or, try Helvetica instead of Arial as a face? I know, for something fun and light hearted, let’s try out Cooper Black. Yeah, yeah, I said Cooper Black. At least Cooper Black was created with some forethought by a master type designer.

I really think the entity to blame for the pandemic of Comic Sans is Microsoft. Had they not lumped this bogus face into the heap of five and dime typefaces in their crash-prone programs, the world would have been saved from the likes of Comic Sans and Arial.

Yes, I’m very passionate about this. I have lived in a Comic Sans infested world for years. Perhaps it is time for the Comic Sans Emancipation Proclamation. Who wants to help me write it? I will not stand any longer to see Comic Sans be used in place of, well, anything else. I want to be free!