7 Ways To Use Twitter to Position Yourself As an Expert
by Shelley Webb | Featured Contributor
There are many ways to use social media and one of them is to use it to position yourself as an expert in your field. The real idea behind positioning yourself as an expert is that when someone searches for information in your field of expertise, they find YOU.
This leads to requests for articles, interviews, speaking gigs (ones that pay), and ultimately more clients and more cash in your pocket.
I began with a blog and a Twitter account.
Well, that’s not actually true. I also had a degree in nursing and some experience in my chosen niche, which at that time was eldercare. Eldercare is NOT sexy! But it was my passion and it was what I knew.
For the first year I had my blog, I concentrated solely on Twitter. I had a Facebook page and a LinkedIn account but rarely set “mouse” on those sites.
Once you have a blog and some good quality content, you can begin promoting yourself. I use the word “promoting” but really, it’s more about building on-line relationships with people who are interested in your expertise.
Here are my favorite ways of doing that.
1. Create a Twitter bio that shows who you are , what you do and how to find you. This is very important. You’ll want to use your own (good quality) photo. You may want to have professional photos taken as you’ll be using them a lot anyway. Describe what you and where folks can find out more about you (your website address is fine). Throw in a little personality (such as your favorite hobby) and you’re good to go.
2. Connect with those who either work in your industry or who are interested in your industry. Use Twitter’s search feature and input the keywords associated with your niche to find others who have that similar interest. For instance, I used “caregiving”, “eldercare”, “seniors”, “dementia” and “Alzheimer’s Disease” as my search words.
Work on your connections daily. Follow as many of those Twitter users as you are allowed to within a given time period. You can follow up to 2000 people before Twitter kicks in its policy that states that you can follow no more than 10% above the number of Twitter users who are following you.
* Do not use an auto direct message to thank your followers. It’s annoying and a waste of what was once a great Twitter feature.
3. Tweet out your own content but also retweet good content from other Twitter users. Again, use the same search words and method to find content to retweet. Content curation shows people that you keep up with what’s new and because you are recommending it, you position yourself as an expert.
Additionally, folks like to be retweeted and they are more apt to follow you if you are retweeting their content. *Read the content before you retweet and check to see that the links actually work. Always thank those who retweet you, even if they are retweeting your REtweet. It’s just good etiquette.
4. Use your industry’s #hashtags in your tweets so that your subject matter can be easily found, but don’t flood your tweet with them. 1 or 2 are enough. Seriously!
5. Participate in Tweet Chats related to your subject matter. Tweet chats are a wonderful way to show the world what you know. You may not be BOOKED as the expert of the hour but it’s easy to show folks that you know your subject matter AND you have a captive audience eager to retweet your words of wisdom to their followers. You can even create your own tweet chat, if you want.
6. Don’t be snobby. Follow back everyone unless they don’t have a photo, or are obviously a “bot”. You don’t necessarily know everything about the person behind the Twitter tag and to whom they might be connected. For instance, I have no idea who decided that I was interesting enough to be considered a featured expert on Sharecare.com, which was created by Jeff Arnold (of webMD fame) and Dr. Mehmet Oz in partnership with Harpo Studios, Sony Pictures Television and Discovery Communications but SOMEONE was watching me. That one person who seems a little boring to you? She may be the booking agent for an Oprah show!
*I have never used the auto-follow method because I want to take the time to see who is following me, but Twitter will soon be doing away with that feature anyway.
7. Just have fun with people. Ask and answer questions. Be excited for the accomplishments of others and let them know. Sympathize with them when they are having a bad day. Many of them will become true friends.
It’s not rocket science. It’s just Twitter.
Social Influence Expert – Shelley Webb is founder of On The Webb Social Media, an agency devoted to teaching professionals how to position themselves as an expert in their field using the power of social media.
Having worked as a registered nurse for over 30 years, Shelley suddenly found herself as the soul caregiver to her father who suffered from dementia. She began writing a blog in order to support other caregivers and just by using the power of social media, rose from a simple nurse to an award winning blog owner, “social media rockstar”, sought after speaker and expert writer for Dr. Oz.
People began asking her if she had a publicity agent. Her response: “social media is my publicity agent”. Soon, requests for social media assistance came flooding in and so in January of 2012, Shelley founded On The Webb Social Media Services.
Born in Canada, raised in southern California, she currently resides in a small town in northern Idaho with 2 dogs, 2 tortoises and about 35 chickens.
On The Webb Social Media blog
The Intentional Caregiver blog
Twitter: @ShelleyWebbCSO and @ShelleyWebbRN
Facebook: OnTheWebbSocialMedia and TheIntentionalCaregiver