A Fresh Start

Photography AdS

Making a fresh start is not easy. What will it look like? What will I leave behind? Is it not worth fixing? How much time and energy are involved in fixing it and isn’t it easier to start fresh? That was me considering my social media accounts.

During the (ongoing) pandemic, a lot changed. Understandably, people were scared and were looking for the patient’s perspective. If I get ill, what to expect and what does it feel like? How long did it last, etc. id you get vaccinated? Did you experience side-effects? But at the same time, the haters and trolls came out in real force.

And now this happened.

Since the last Supreme Court decisions, many changes have become fundamental. Accounts that used to be fun to follow became dark. Dark in tone, dark in passive-aggressive reactions, dark in the subject matters. What was once conversational and explorative (think brainstorming) has become confrontational and exclusive. Say one word against a person or an issue and you get muted or blocked.

If the discussion could not be had in tweets on your main feed, than the DM (direct messages) and subtweets flooded your timeline with other people pouncing. Engaging and interacting on Twitter had become a chore. You needed to find those who would not explode if you gave your honest opinion.

All this, combined with those who are only on social media to collect followers, likes, or (video or newsletter) subscribers, made me consider to just close down and start from scratch. I briefly thought about losing over 20’000 Twitter followers but then I got clarity.

Perspective

My website’s traffic (not this blog) is fueled by keyword searches, not by social media. And, I never checked the main feed on Twitter. I had split up accounts in lists. I made those lists a long time ago to make it easier to follow people’s conversations. I had one for local accounts, one for law, one for forensics, of course, one for stationery, etc. I made them private too. So, why not start fresh?

Size really doesn’t matter

I now have a new, small Twitter account but with lively discussions. After I follow someone, they immediately get added to one of my new, private lists. I have less visibility but there is a lot less drama. And that is fine with me!

Promote your blog on Twitter

Many bloggers, especially new ones, are unsure where to place the link to their blog on Twitter. As a result, they keep repeating the same promotional tweets. Repeated self-promotion does not do well with Twitter’s algorithm and that in turn, does not gain you followers or exposure for your blog. So, if you are not sure where to place a link to your blog on Twitter, this post is for you.

On Twitter, you have several options to place a link to your blog.

1: Use you header to your advantage

Your header can be used for great photography but why not combine the photography with a link? Check what I did below. The header is actually the one that I use for this blog. Now pay attention to what I wrote over it: my blog’s name and where to find it.

Art and photography AdS

Take a picture that you like for your header. Then use a simple editor to type your blog’s URL on it. Adjust the colours to make sure that they stand out, write the full link, save the picture, and upload it to Twitter. The recommended dimensions for header images are 1500 x 500 pixels. This is spot number one. Why? People are more inclined to check pictures than reading a bio, no matter how short.

2: Use the website field

In you bio, Twitter has a designated spot for one link so use that for your blog. If you have multiple sites, consider using something like Link Mix. This is spot number two.

3: Use your bio

Twitter gives you 160 characters to write something about yourself and yes, that may include a link, see here. So, proudly state that your are a blogger (use the hashtag #blogger for optimized search results) followed by your site’s link. To save characters, use a link shortener. This is your third spot.

Now onto spot #4.

Twitter has a pinned tweet feature. You write a tweet and pin it to the top of your feed, see here how. It remains there until you replace it. You can use this to promote your latest book or, to add information for which there was no space in your bio. Check the plus sign in the lower right corner, it means you can add another tweet to the original. This is spot #4 to promote your blog.

What you should not do?

Do not immediately send every new follower a direct message (DM) with your links, promotional materials, and worse, requests that they follow you on other social media platforms. DMs are seen as private territory. Most Twitter users have DMs turned off meaning only people they follow can contact them that way. But even then, DMs are not welcome. Why? Abuse and harassment. So, ask someone if it is ok to DM.

I hope that this information helps you to promote your blog on Twitter!