Last week I got such an overwhelming response to my Facebook mistakes post that I decided to do one for Twitter too. I hope you’re not guilty of doing these cardinal Twitter sins!
1) Begging People to “Follow Back!”
I cannot tell you how many times this happens and equivalently, how many times I ignore the “request.” I say “request” in quotation marks because it’s really more begging, almost forcing someone to follow you.
Also, I find that the most annoying people who break this cardinal sin of Twitter don’t do it just once. Oh no, if they did, then we could pretend we didn’t notice it. But they usually do it more than once.
“I’m following you! Follow back!”
“You’re welcome for the RT! Follow back??”
“Love that quote! Follow back!”
“Follow back, follow back, follow back…!!!”
No sir/madame, I will NOT “follow back.”
If someone “asks” me to follow back, that’s a sure indicator that I will not ever follow them. Why?? Because you’ll probably prove more annoying down the line and I’ll have to go through the trouble of unfriending you. Why waste the time or energy when I could just not follow you to begin with?
You’re only supposed to follow people you 1) know and like, 2) people you admire, 3) people who post great stuff. Why bother following anyone else??
Word to the Wise: Don’t ask people to “follow back”; it reeks of desperation.
2) Making Your Profile Private.
I’ll keep it simple on this one. Having a private profile is ridiculous. Plain and simple.
Word to the Wise: If you want people to follow and engage with you on Twitter, don’t make your Profile private. Your tweets aren’t that important.
3) The “Egghead” Picture Syndrome.
The Egghead Syndrome: defined by not posting a real picture of any kind and thus sporting the colored “egghead” default picture.
This is also grounds for not following or unfollowing someone. (Unless I know you in real life--and like you.)
No one will take you seriously and certainly not professionally if you don’t upload a real picture of yourself. It takes all of 5 seconds, maybe 2 to do this. The effort won’t kill you.
Word to the Wise: If you want followers and to be taken seriously on Twitter, UPLOAD a FRIGGIN’ PICTURE.
4) Spamming People’s DMs.
Thanks to evil hackers who have a special place in hell reserved for them on the Day of Judgment should they continue to unrepentantly hack us all to death, we can’t exactly help this unfortunate situation.
But you can prevent it from happening again or at least for a long while.
Once you find out your account has been hacked and is sending out crazy messages to people, you can fix it asap and put that hacker in his/her place.
Word to the Wise: CHANGE YOUR PASSWORD. It’s as simple as that.
5) Spamming People’s Feed.
I am sooo not a fan of this! People you don’t know posting random links on your Twitter wall and there’s no way to delete it. Can you say “annoying??”
Dear Twitter Administrators, please create a “delete” feature for offenders like this.
Word to the Wise: Spamming anyone for any reason is a cardinal internet offense on any platform. If you do this, you should go to internet jail. Period.
6) Following & Dropping.
I HATE, LOATHE, and DESPISE this!! If you want to follow me, then follow me! If not, then don’t! I understand if you didn’t take too good a look at my Jesus-preaching-wedding-loving-faerie tale-writing-politically-conservative tweets initially and decided to unfriend me later. That’s fine. Unfollow away!
But I’m talking about those people who either 1) specifically follow you with the full intention of dropping you the moment you follow them back or those that 2) follow you, then delete you the moment they find out you’re not following them back.
And if you’re actually spending money on a company that does this en masse for you, I’m pretty sure that’s illegal.
Word to the Wise: Follow and unfollow as your conscience and Twitter rules dictates. Don’t manipulate people for your own follower-gain.
7) Not Engaging with Your Followers.
Why are you even on Twitter if you’re not engaging with people? Especially with the people who take the time out to personally message you? You may not necessarily want to/be able to follow them back, but ignoring them sure ain’t cool. Unless they’re breaking the #1 cardinal rule (see “Begging People to ‘Follow Back’).
Word to the Wise: Twitter, like business and life in general, is based on relationships. Frequent, authentic engagement with your followers increases the likelihood of your gaining more, truly loyal followers.
BONUS Cardinal Sin: Feeling obligated to follow someone.
I admit I struggle with this at times. Not all the time, but there are just people that, for whatever reason, you feel obligated to follow. A family member, co-worker, “friend,” or some other such acquaintance. But at the end of the day, it’s completely up to you. A good rule of thumb is to consider “how will this person enrich my [Twitter] life?” Then decide from there.
Frankly, I don’t even follow my mother on Twitter. That’s what phones and Facebook are for! (Sorry Mom.)
Word to the Wise: You are beholden to no one on Twitter; you don’t owe anyone a follow, RT, or Favorite.
So which of these 7 cardinal Twitter sins have you broken? Which is the worst in your eyes? Share your Twitter angsts in the comments below!
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