by Neena Nandagopal | Featured Contributor
When you first start out on Twitter, it’s a pretty lonely place.
You set up your account and start tweeting to no one. Thankfully, a few random people find and follow you.
To speed things along, you follow a bunch of people and some follow you back and so on and so forth.
And then one day you happily realize that you have a substantial following.
But it still feels like a really lonely place.
And that is not at all what you expected.
Twitter is like a big, busy city. There is noise and traffic all around you. Everyone is caught up in the hustle and bustle of city life.
But if you don’t know anyone – you are all alone. Just a face in the crowd.
To enjoy life in the city – and also life on Twitter – you need to build meaningful relationships with other people.
The more that you engage with other people, the more value you get out of it.
Here are 5 strategies that you can use to build relationships on Twitter.
5 Ways to Engage With Others on Twitter
1. Follow Others in Your Niche
No matter what you blog about or what your business is – there are other people on Twitter who are in the same field or niche.
Follow their followers.
Follow who they follow.
(But whatever you do – don’t buy them.)
Why connect with others in your niche?
Because, the assumption is that many of these people are interested in the subject that you are writing and Tweeting about.
They are more likely to engage with you and your content – than other random people.
2. Talk to Your Peeps
It is not enough to follow people.
If you want to get their attention, you need to talk to them.
This goes above and beyond the common retweet or favorite. It even goes beyond thanking someone for retweeting you.
To really stand out you need to make your interaction personal.
Take time to read their latest blog post. Leave a comment on their blog. Share the article on social media and ask them a question about it on Twitter.
If they’ve shared something on Twitter – take the time to read what they shared and respond in a way that let’s them know that you took the time to read it.
3. Create Lists
Of course it would be impossible to read everything that everyone tweets.
Using Twitter lists is a way to strategically connect with influencers in your niche without eating up all your spare time.
Twitter allows you to create lists of people. You can make these lists public or keep them private.
Create a public list of “Influencers” or “Awesome Friends” and add people to it who you admire or who actively share your stuff.
This makes it easy for you to find fresh content to share.
In addition, create a private list of three or four people that you really want to connect with.
This is the list that you will pay special attention to and really engage with.
Every week you can change this up and connect on a deeper level with new small group of people.
4. Share Their Stuff
When you retweet or share someone else’s article – you usually have 2 items on your agenda:
You want to share great information with your followers
You want the author to notice that you are supporting them by sharing their stuff.
To get the author’s attention, you have to make yourself stand out.
A standard retweet just won’t cut it.
The best way to share is to add a personal comment to the retweet or share and to also include the author’s @ Twitter name in the share.
Sometimes this is easier said than done. When you hit the Tweet button on someone’s article the author’s username might prepopulate.
If this happens, then you have to search for a “Follow Me on Twitter” button on their website, or search Twitter to find their username.
But if you really want to connect, you need to make this effort.
Ninja Trick: Make a spreadsheet of people that you mention on Twitter often and their twitter handles so you don’t have to search each time.
5. Respond When They Talk To You
If someone goes above and beyond to share your articles, respond to your questions, and sing your praises – RESPOND to them!
They’ve done the hard part and are asking for engagement.
Give it to them!
Make Twitter Your Small Town
You will be surprised at how “small town” Twitter can be when you connect with people who are interested in what you share, start conversations, share their stuff, and reply when they reach out.
What is your best strategy for creating business relationships on Twitter?
She is passionate about giving creative and talented women concrete guidance on how to establish an online business that is in line with their lives.
Her services include everything from blog coaching packages to creating individualized policy and procedure manuals and business processes.
Neena believes that working more efficiently is the key to business success. However, her philosophy is that time management is outdated. Instead, she works with her clients to manage their focus and attention, because that is what brings maximum results – both online and offline.
When she is not working, Neena enjoys spending time with her husband, four teenage children, and her little shih-tzu.