75 Top Twitter Tips from Today’s Small Business Moms

By Linsey Knerl on 13 January 2010 0 comments
Photo: iStockphoto

They’re savvy, they’re connected, and they have kids. Today’s small biz moms are overwhelmingly identifying themselves as more than just professionals — they are also proudly leading the way in the Twittersphere. Knowing that Twitter is one of the most cost-effective ways for you to build and market your business, we asked 75 of the most accomplished entrepreneurs what advice they have for anyone who wants to do the same. These entrepreneurs, PR professionals, store owners, photographers, artists, authors, and more share their successes in this must-read list of tried and true Twitter tips. (Participants are listed in no particular order.)

1. Erika Lehmann - @ErikaLehmann

“I think the key to achieving Twitter success is engaging with your followers. Take 5 minutes a day and read through the general stream, and then respond to anything that you find interesting, retweet it out to your followers, etc. This goes a long way towards building a community around your brand and name - and those people are much more likely to engage with you in the future, as well."

2. MJ Tam - @mjtam

Create authentic relationships by simply finding out more about your follower, and ask them directly! Always take the time to acknowledge your followers who took the time to RT your tweets. I've found so many clients and projects by just being on Twitter, and not to mention that Twitter is one effective marketing tool for us! And it's free!”

3. Caryn Bailey - @rockinmama

“Before Twitter, consumers were limited by phone and email with regards to communication with companies. Twitter has opened the channel of communication so that anyone can connect with brands on a personal level. I like that there is a ‘real’ person behind that Twitter account...not simply the name of a corporation.”

4. Michele Whiteaker - @OCPlayParks

Twitter offers me global perspectives on ‘play outdoors’ from top websites, thinkers, and bloggers. It also keeps me in the loop with my local OC Blogger community. Interacting with all these innovative personalities on Twitter keeps my content fresh and relevant while creating valuable IRL (in real life) connections.”

5. Devra Renner, MSW - @ParentopiaDevra

“Be personable and approachable, be considerate and helpful. Tweet others the way you would want to be tweeted yourself.”

6. Amy Allen Clark - @momadvice

“Achieving success on Twitter, for me, has required a careful balance of socialization while also providing valuable information to my readers. I have found that if I don't contribute to my community in an authentic way that it can be difficult to attract new readers. Be yourself and do your best to add value to your community and your business will grow in the process!”

 7. Tori Tait - @HostessTori

Forming relationships and connections on Twitter takes time, just as it does in the 'real' world. Being personable and genuine is key to achieving success on Twitter. Be kind, and let your personality shine!”

8. Shannon Hurst Lane - @Cajun_Mama

“Give and you shall receive. I use Twitter in a variety of ways, including promoting useful articles I find on the web, tweeting pictures while I travel (as a teaser for upcoming features), and to help raise funds for worthy causes. Twitter for me is like a 24/7 cocktail party where there are always willing conversation participants. It is networking at its finest, allowing me to get to know people before the pursuit of any business dealings.”

9. Arianne Segerman - @ToThink

“Always start by being real, being happy for people, being a giver, and being you. This builds followers organically, those who will stick around and be sad when you're sad, excited when you're excited, and help you promote things when the need arises.”

10. Alyssa Avant - @alyssaavant

“Twitter is an amazing tool that allows you to connect with others from all over the world. Be genuine, be open, be honest and use Twitter to build relationships. Success and business will follow as a result of your genuine interest in others via Twitter.”

11. Sugar Jones - @SugarJones

“Engage - Spend time getting to know others by asking random questions like ‘What was your favorite childhood memory?’ Inform - Share links that might be helpful or answer calls for advice on products, services, or even daily life. Entertain - Be funny... be snarky... be controversial... whatever you are, be it!”

12. Meagan Francis - @meaganfrancis

“Twitter has completely changed the way I interact with my readers. It can be so hard to keep up with blogs when you're busy working and raising a family yourself, but now I can keep tabs on what everyone is up to--and have great conversations--in a lot less time and with a lot less clicking around. I use Twitter as my main community "hub", clicking links when people share their posts and sharing links to my own.”

13. Renee Ross - @reneejross

“Be true to yourself. Keep things conversational and interact. Watching on the sidelines is meaningless, but building relationships is golden!”

14. Allison Worthington - @alliworthington

“Twitter has opened doors of opportunity that no other platform can achieve. On Twitter, the CEO and the mail clerk discuss issues of the day. It is the democratization of the web.”

15. Sheena Williams - @mommydaddyblog

Follow people and conversations relevant to your niche. Participate in discussion: ask questions, make recommendations, and be nice!”

16. Briana Carter - @bargainbriana

“Twitter has helped grow my blog by allowing me to get out quick tidbits and deals, as well as making many connections with other bloggers in my niche. Know your twitter audience, yet be yourself.”

17. Christine Young - @YoungMommy

“The key to effectively using Twitter as a way to build your business, or grow your community, is to actively engage in natural conversations with your followers. Trust me, they will see through self-promotion, but will be drawn towards an authentic voice.”

18. Traci Feit Love - @tracilove

“Twitter is a great way to make connections, and connections can sometimes lead to new business. It's important to keep your focus on the relationships, though - if you focus too heavily on selling your products/services, you'll end up alienating the very people you're trying to reach. Be friendly, offer to help others when you can, and occasionally remind people about what you do.”

19. Joyce Cherrier - @joycecherrier

“It's all about what you bring to the community: Relationships, great content, and helping others. Think people, not prospects!”

20. Lin C. - @blogomomma

“I think of Twitter as a party. The key to any great party is a good mix of people and a great host! Make introductions, connect people, initiate conversation, share information, encourage one another, network, laugh and joke. Whatever you put into it, you'll reap from it. Above all; respond and engage, make your guests feel important!”

21. Elizabeth Edwards - @Table4Five

“I've seen traffic on all of my blogs increase since I started using Twitter. It's one of the most effective ways I get people to come enter my giveaways, and the increased visits mean more opportunities for me as well as more advertisers for my blogs.”

22. Julie Northrop - @julieFBT

Be yourself, engage others, and provide value-added tweets. It's not about numbers, it's about the quality of those you follow and who follow you. Provide that personal connection by creating a fun and inviting profile with a picture!”

23. Brandie Kajino, The Home Office Organizer - @bkajino

“I believe the key to using Twitter is contributing to the conversation and striving to be genuinely helpful within that space. For me, it's not about hard selling, but rather about bringing value to your community. Twitter is an extension of what I do in any other situation (including my business services), which is helping others.”

24. Pamela M. Kramer - @PamelaMKramer

“My Twitter success has been based on developing friendships. Many users tweet lots of information and find it useful for followers to retweet that information. Your relationship with your followers has to be more in-depth than just trying to market yourself.”

25. Maricris Guadagna - @MaricrisG

To achieve Twitter success relevant to the success of your business, you must first create an authentic relationship with the folks that you connect with on Twitter. Building Trust means loyal clients.”

26. Katie Goodman - @goodlifeeats

Twitter has allowed me the opportunity to connect with others in the food blogging community in ways I never would have imagined: building true friendships and a feeling of cooperation over competition. Without this sense of cooperation, I never would have had the opportunity to attend BlogHer Food '09 in San Francisco this fall - many fellow food bloggers sent Tweets and emails to help me find a ticket to the sold out event. Twitter has introduced me to great blogging resources that have helped me improve my blog as a whole, specifically in terms of my design, as well as information and examples that have helped me improve my food photography so I can fully convey the beauty of the food I am writing about.”

27. Sandy Jenney - @organizersandy

“I feel the main key to Twitter is making relationships - not just "talking or promoting" but instead listening & responding to others. Don't make it about business, make it about communication & building the relationship. If you want business...it will come after the relationship is built.”

28. Gretchen Jakub Fabre - @Chichiboulie

Although I have yet to figure it all out, I have found that creating relationships and not just increasing your followers list is key to success on Twitter. Retweeting and replying to others’ posts are two key ways to help develop these relationships that in time, do become reciprocal and thus increase my visibility in networks where I may not be present. Twitter has helped me to not only gain exposure for my products, but it has also allowed me to develop relationships with people who have given me insight into ways to increase my business.”

29. Beth Blecherman - @TechMama

My advice on achieving Twitter success is to use Twitter updates as a public platform to support your "online image". Pick your main niche and focus your Twitter updates on that niche by retweeting interesting links, sharing information about related events and connecting with your Twitter community. My niche is Technology, Social Media, Gadgets, and parenting but I also like to throw in personal updates at times.”

30. Jennae Petersen - @greenyourdecor

To be successful on Twitter, you have to add value for your followers. You can't spend all your time talking about your own business, as it will make you seem selfish and narcissistic. You have to offer the type of conversation and information you would offer to friends or family in real life.”

31. Lindsay Maines - @rockandrollmama

“Ride the wave of serendipity. Every connection on Twitter may not seem relevant, but in the end, they all are.”

32. Laurie Turk - @tipjunkie

“The best advice I received when learning how to Twitter was to keep in mind your ‘Twitter Persona’ when you tweet. Do you want to be known as personable, friendly, humorous, knowledgeable, etc. Deciding this ahead of time gives you a purpose and a plan.”

33. Kelly Wickham - @mochamomma

“Be real, be yourself, be succinct. It's important to connect with people and use a variety of tweets (humorous, helpful, links, questions) to maintain a base. Follow people that YOU want and never feel pressured to follow someone with whom you have nothing in common.”

34. Crystal Paine - @crystalpaine

I love the opportunity Twitter gives me to interact with readers, meet new friends, discover helpful links, and quickly pass along great deals or must-reads. My best advice for achieving Twitter success is to get involved: interact with others; ask & answer questions; retweet interesting links; and have fun!”

35. Mercedes Levy - @commnsensemoney

Twitter has helped my blog grow since it makes it so easy for my followers to share my tweets with their followers. Before I know it, not only have I won a new follower but also a new reader. A new follower means a new network of potential followers and readers.”

36. Diana Adams - @adamsconsulting

“I cannot imagine my life without Twitter. I have gained clients -- which is great -- but I have also met people I’ll be friends with forever. To be successful on Twitter, just engage others, be yourself and have fun!”

37. Erin Kotecki Vest - @queenofspain

“Have a conversation. Connect with friends, network, have fun and let the opportunities take you where they may.”

38. Jennifer James - @mombloggersclub

“It's always hard to define Twitter success, but one thing is certain: if you really want to be an influencer, listen more than you tweet.”

39.Stacy DeBroff - @momcentral

Twitter has enabled explosive, instant and wondrous connectivity between Moms with each other, between Moms and the brands we love (or even do not like or have customer service issues with), and between Mom Central Consulting and the thousands of influential Moms with whom we work. It’s hard to imagine a social media campaign focused on Moms that does not involve a strong twitter presence and outreach. Moreover, we can attribute at least a million dollars of consulting income over the past year and a half that has come directly from connections made on Twitter.”

40. Jodi Grundig - @JodiGrundig

”For me, Twitter is a way to reach an entire community in a quick and easy way. I've gotten story ideas, readers, business opportunities, and even freelance writing jobs from Twitter. To best utilize Twitter, however, one has to build a community first, and work hard to maintain it.”

41. Shelly Kramer - @shellykramer

“Social mediums are about engaging, interacting, sharing, giving, learning and growing. Be yourself, be real, be unselfish and invest in building relationships in those realms just as you do in the ‘real world.’ Twitter has resulted in exponential growth for my business, which is a direct result of the investment of time and energy I’ve committed to the process, as well as the myriad of relationships that have developed, the colleagues I’ve discovered and the innumerable friendships I have formed.”

42. Kim Janocko - @craftymamaof4

“My advice for Twitter success is be yourself, engage with others on a personal level, and have fun! Twitter is a great place to make contacts and network. If it wasn't for Twitter I wouldn't have met all the incredible people I have met in the last year that have helped my blog grow to what it is today.”

43. Carissa Rogers - @carissarogers

“USE YOUR REAL name. I know it's a scary world out there, but please, it's hard to respond to ‘cutieheartsbaby’ in a DM! Realize that it's okay to let relationships fast forward in twitter time, and also realize that friendships wax and wane as well. When I was 'marketing' for my own shop blog I had to slow down what I said about it on Twitter, the orders came in TOO fast!”

44. Heather B. - @thedomesticdiva

“Twitter brings new readers to my blog each and every day. With Twitter it's easy to keep the conversation going outside of a blog post and in 'real' time.”

45. Colleen Padilla - @classymommy

"Promote others and share newsworthy information that will matter to your specific followers. Try to share news that relates to the general topic of your business. For example, as a Mom Blogger who writes about hot products, I'll try to share the most interesting parenting news & gossip, product recalls, buzz on the newest toys, and timely coupon codes to help my followers snag a super deal to save big."

46. Amber Johnson - @crazycanuckblog

“My greatest advice is to just delve in and connect with people who share your passion. Don't make it a numbers game. If you're blogging about your business, be sure to also infuse your personality, and you will build so many great personal and business relationships.”

47. Stephanie Odea - @stephanieodea

“I use Twitter to speak directly to readers who don't contact me through email. I mostly use Twitter to thank readers who tweet about my book, ‘Make It Fast, Cook It Slow: The Big Book of Everyday Slow Cooking,’ or to answer questions about recipes. I appreciate the quick response time, and the friendly ‘informal’ feel.”

48. Audrey McClelland - @AudreyMcClellan

“Twitter has increased the growth of my business because of the exposure to so many people on Twitter. It's the perfect destination to connect, engage, learn, advise, network and increase your visibility.”

49. Linda Sellers - @shortpumppreppy

“Twitter has been the best tool to connect globally, but I find as much success connecting to local people and businesses that I might not find on my own. I'm amazed at how many times a new contact says ‘saw you on Twitter’. It's a fabulous way to introduce yourself and your business...your personality shines through!”

50. Anne-Marie Nichols - @amnichols

“When marketing your blog, you’re usually led to find people in your niche and ‘hang out’ with them online. The problem is how to find them to start a conversation. With Twitter (and Twitter Search) you can find and connect with your ‘peeps’ quickly and in a meaningful way.”

51. Stephanie Smirnov - @ssmirnov

“Twitter has completely transformed my life, both as a working mother and a PR practitioner. It allows me to do everything in overdrive: networking, research, amplifying client campaigns, gathering competitive intelligence, promoting our agency. It's also connected me to a network of brilliant professional women, many of whom have become trusted colleagues and in some cases, cherished friends.”

52. Rachael Herrscher - @todaysmama

“Balance! Don't just talk about yourself! Compelling tweets contain a mix of good/credible content and links of your own AND from other people. Interaction, response, and reciprocation are keys to the conversation in the Twittersphere.”

53. Lolita Carrico - @lolita

“Twitter has been a fantastic networking outlet for me. I try to be clear, professional and friendly on Twitter...just like I am in person. I have a formula that I loosely follow: I try to tweet 30 percent personal information -- i.e. updates about my day, my children, fun stuff --, 40 percent business updates, and 30 percent sharing links to relevant news that I think my followers will be interested in that also show them that I'm on top of my industry's news.”

54. Erin Chase - @5dollardinners

“Embrace Twitter as a community! It's a place to interact and connect with other bloggers, friends, PR professionals, even celebrities. Be true to yourself, your brand, your blog and your business in the fabulous Twitter community.”

55. Jennifer Leal - @savorthethyme

“Be genuine in your interactions with others, and do not make your tweets all about you and your brand.”

56. Molly Teichman - @mommentator

“Twitter was tantamount in all of my successes by increasing my networking base, allowing me to quickly peruse the top news of the day as recommended by ‘friends’ and giving me an insider access to personalities, opinion leaders and politicians. Twitter levels the ‘playing field’ that was once reserved only for media. Today, you can be a noted commentator from anywhere your laptop takes you.”

57. Glennia Campbell, Stefania Pomponi Butler + staff writers - @momocrats

“Twitter allows us to share links to our blog posts, connect with other progressives, and motivate our followers to take action on any number of issues. In terms of staying connected to the political issues of the day, Twitter is where it's at.”

58. Stefania Pomponi Butler - @CityMama

“I view Twitter like one big dinner party with friends. It's a place for sharing ideas, learning something new, and even for getting together for a couple of hours (with or without a glass of wine) for Twitter parties. Jump in, engage, be real, be generous. Those are my Twitter tips for success.”

59. Amy Bellgardt - @MomSpark

My best advice is to engage with your followers and always seek out new people to connect with!”

60. Barb Likos - @chaotic_barb

“Twitter is all about making connections. You wouldn't stand on a table in the middle of a party and keep screaming your business commercial. Don't do it on twitter either! Unless people know YOU, your tweets about your business are being ignored!”

61. Tara Kuczykowski - @DealSeekingMom

I love the fact that I've been able to translate the way I've always shared deals with my friends over instant messenger to a much larger audience via Twitter.”

62. Lori Falcon - @ACowboysWife

“Seek out and follow not only people you know, but people with similar interests, or even people whom you have nothing in common with and get to know them. It’s about educating each other, personal interaction, and collaborating together. It’s not about having the most followers or being the most active, it’s about making a difference when you do engage.”

63. Amy Lupold Bair - @ResourcefulMom

“Be yourself, always. Not only will it bring the people and opportunities that are truly meant for you, but it also takes far less energy.”

64. Jyl Johnson Pattee - @jylmomIF and @momitforward

“1) Be authentic and open. Open meaning opening yourself up to the possibility of lots and lots of friends, advice, information, news, fun, and opportunities. 2) Build friendships and/or business relationships. Take it one step further by converting those online relationships into offline friendships. Nothing like meeting someone on Twitter one week and having lunch with them the following week! And more than anything, 3) Do something positive with the space to help make it a safe, fun, trusting, and amazing community: Participate or host a fundraiser, share positive comments about others, retweet, reach out to Twitter newbies, offer tips or information, etc.”

65. Erin Gifford - @eringifford

 “I use TwitterFeed to tweet out my blog posts, which has enabled me to extend my reach and grow my audience. The new list-making feature in Twitter has also helped me to develop more engaging relationships with my peers, as well as with brands, media, experts and business prospects.”

66. Denise Sawyer - @CentsibleSawyer

 “Twitter has made me more ‘reach-able.’ Bloggers in my field, PR reps, companies, etc have all found me on Twitter. I feel like it allowed me to cast a wider net and forge friendships with like minded-people.”

67. Lynnae McCoy - @Lynnae

“Twitter is a great tool for bloggers, because it provides a quick way to network with other bloggers in real time. It's also invaluable for getting to know your readers...what they're wondering, what they find important. And that, in turn, helps me find pertinent topics to discuss on my blog.”

68. Jenn Fowler - @JennFowler

“Balance out your twitter use-chitchat a bit, post links a bit, retweet interesting things you've seen others say. Interact with your followers-ask questions and answer them-and you'll soon find yourself building relationships with both peers and customers.”

69. Lucretia M. Pruitt - @GeekMommy

“Make sure to monitor your @ & DM messages constantly - unless 2 dozen people @ you the same thing? Not replying to individuals is the same as ignoring someone talking to you in person. Never tweet anything you wouldn't want your Grandmother, your kids, or your boss to see - because they will. Apply the Golden Rule: Tweet as you would be Tweeted.”

70. Melissa Garcia - @ConsumerQueen

“Make sure you are using the ‘Social’ part of Twitter! Don't just advertise, Engage with your followers! Make sure you follow the same advice you tweet out. People are watching you. Give yourself a personality on twitter!”

71. Linsey Knerl - @wisebread

“Be consistent with your Tweets. Try not to skip too many days, and spread your communications out over a period of time (instead of tweeting out 20 tweets in 5 minutes.) Use scheduling tools, if necessary.”

72. Beth Davis - @plussizemommy

“The best advice I can give to achieve twitter success is to respond to everyone who has conversation your interested in. Stay positive in your tweets and avoid drama (oh how I've learned this). People are listening and reading your tweets so keep on tweeting and you will obtain success!”

73. Katja Presnal - @katjapresnal

“The key to Twitter success is realizing it is all about community; and by supporting and helping others in your community makes your community to grow and prosper, including your own business.”

74. Danielle Smith - @ExtraordMommy

“Twitter is like Google with a heart. Ask anything you want, but remember there is a person on the other end of that mini-conversation. Reach out to people, respond when they reach out to you.”

75. Monica Brady - @MommyBrain

“My best piece of advice for using Twitter successfully is to engage yourself in conversations. Twitter is great for networking, but people won't know who you are or why you're there unless you talk to them! Don't just sit in the shadows!”

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