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Twitter 101

If you’ve been neglecting Twitter (or were intimidated by it), here are some very basic tips for getting started.

Pick your username carefully. The @username you select can’t be changed, so avoid @partyallnight or @myoffensivepoliticalviews, unless that’s what you want to convey forever. Here are some examples of what not to do. You can adjust the name next to your @username whenever you like.

egghead

Post a picture – any picture – right away. Users with no pictures are known as eggheads because of the placeholder image that is the default. Besides missing out on your primary branding opportunity, eggheads are often fake accounts or spammers, so you don’t want to be in that company.

You’ll be asked to follow some popular accounts based on your interests. These can be adjusted later on, so don’t stress too much over this. Getting a stream of content that you’re interested in will take some time, and you can do this later.

 

Find the people you already know who are on Twitter and follow them. Look at their followers, and if they’re interesting, follow them as well. It’s not as personal as Facebook, where you are supposed to actually know them. Hopefully they will follow you back!

People will follow you – you can’t really stop them but if they’re offensive you can block them. If you don’t follow them back, their content won’t show up in your feed. If they’re not offensive but you’re not interested in their posts, don’t follow them back but keep them around while you build your numbers of followers.

Get started posting! To get your feet wet, choose some interesting posts to retweet. Write a post or two of relevant content, and reply to any responses.

This will get you started – find your niche among Twitter users and find your unique Twitter voice, and I’ll be writing more soon!

Oh, I’m on Twitter @CEMDsocial. Follow me!

WordPress.com vs WordPress.org

There are two WordPress protocols – WordPress.com and WordPress.org. How do you decide which to use?

Wordpress_logo_8

The critical decision factors revolve around hosting, your comfort with technology, how much you’d like to customize your site, and how much you care to spend.

WordPress.com is hosted for you by WordPress, and the basic package is free if you don’t need a custom domain, don’t mind if ads are posted on your site, and use under 3GB for your files. There are extra costs for a custom domain, having no ads, and maintaining a larger site.

By using the WordPress.org framework, you can host wherever you like with your custom domain, and a larger variety of themes and functional plugins to choose from. A hosting account will usually offer email hosting and large or even unlimited storage.

If you are just getting started and your funds are limited, the basic WordPress.com package will probably be enough to get you going. However, the extras (domain mapping, no ads, extra storage, additional costs for email addresses) make it less competitive with self-hosting. If you think you might upgrade from the basic package, my recommendation is to keep your site very simple and put extra effort into your WordPress.org site when you’re able.

Here is an infographic from an excellent comparison of the two products via WPMU DEV, a premium WordPress.org theme developer.

wp-cost-comparison-2015-2-448x513

My mission is to help you at whatever stage you’re at in your business, so get in touch to discuss what platform is right for you right now!

Older posts below

You may notice a huge time lapse between old and new posts – I kept a typography blog for a class I was taking, and imported those posts over to this site. Some of the formatting may be wonky, and I’m sure there are many dead links. But there is some fun and interesting stuff if you feel like marching back through the archives.

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