According to a 2010 report posted on the blog of the social networking site Twitter™, the organization claims 145 million registered users. The number has surely increased since 2010, and the users are not just individuals keeping their “followers” up-to-date with daily happenings; many business owners log on to market services and generate profits. “I have found Twitter to be helpful in enhancing my credentials and reputation with fitness consumers,” says Alexandra Williams, MA, IDEA author and co-creator of “They get to know my personality and level of knowledge so they trust me and my information.” But there’s more to “tweeting” than sharing thoughts or blatantly asking for business. Here are Williams’s top four tips for Twitter success:

  • Be Yourself. Be your professional self, but let your personality come through. Avoid cursing, and don’t discuss religion or politics unless doing so is related to your business model.
  • Pitch Moderately. A maximum of 30% of your tweets should be pitches to hire you or read your blog. Use the remaining 70% for putting out valuable content and interacting. This will make your followers more likely to support you when you do tweet pitches.
  • Don’t Get Follower-Happy. You will have better luck if you have a smaller group of loyal followers/friends who want to help you succeed than if you simply collect as many followers as possible.
  • Be Aware of Scope of Practice. When considering content to share (research, workout tips, nutrition info), anything within your scope of practice is good. There is so much bad information on Twitter that you will stand out if you are consistent about tweeting helpful, accurate information.

    For more tips on using Twitter to your advantage, read “Twitter Me This, Twitter Me That” in the April 2009 issue of IDEA Trainer Success.