10 Steps to getting started on Twitter as a Virtual Assistant [UPDATED]

Founded in 2006, Twitter is now one of the biggest social media platforms around. Favoured for its short, snappy posts or ‘tweets’, it’s a great way to interact with your potential clients and to raise your profile – so here’s 10 steps to help you get started on Twitter.

#1: Choose a username

Your username is your ‘handle’ on Twitter. It’s the name you become known as and is prefixed with the ‘@’ sign. It needs to be between 10 – 15 characters. Perfect examples are your own name or your business name. If they’re not available, look to find other ways to illustrate it i.e. ‘4’ instead of ‘for’, adding ‘UK’ at the end of your name or ‘U’ instead of ‘you’.

#2: Write your bio

You only have 160 characters to use in your bio, so make every word count! Look to add specific keywords that your ideal clients may be searching for.

#3: Add a photo

You get a default image as your profile image but you need to change this and upload your own as people like to see who they’re interacting with.

#4: Send out your first tweet

Once you’ve opened your account, why not send out a tweet to announce your arrival? Remember, all tweets have to be 280 characters or less so less is more! Remember that, unless you private message someone (by hitting the ‘message’ icon) everyone can see your tweets.

#5: Let your network know you’re on Twitter

Now you’ve sent out your first tweet celebrate! Share the details of your new Twitter account on your other social media accounts and invite them to follow you.

The easiest way to get started is to follow those people that you already know, and the chances are, they’re already following you, now they know you’re on Twitter! Be sure to follow @VAtrainingpro and tweet us.

#6: Understand the toolbar

Along your top toolbar you have three options: ‘Home’ is your main feed, ‘Notifications’ will indicate when you have contact from someone and ‘Messages’ are when people private message you, so no one sees your messages, apart from you.

#7: Find other people to follow

Use the search bar at the top of the screen to search for keywords and names, but there’s also another way to find people to follow using the ‘#Discover’ button on the top toolbar. Once on this page you’ll have two great options on the left-hand side to use – ‘who to follow’ and ‘popular accounts’. We quite often will post tweets with the #VATraining, #VA and #VATip.

#8: Be selective over who you follow

Whilst we’re talking about who to follow, you want to be a bit selective over who you pick. Look for people who are active on Twitter AND check what type of content they share, as some accounts will post nothing but spam. Two types of account you will want to avoid are those who ‘promise’ you thousands of followers if you follow them, and those who have thousands of followers but a really low amount of followers and tweets.

#9: Get involved!

Start a conversation, reply to others and generally interact! Twitter is all about having conversations in a short and snappy way. Look to share other people’s posts by retweeting them, select your favourite ones by hitting the ‘star’ icon underneath them and reply to those that interest you.

If you want to send a tweet to a specific person, select the ‘tweet to’ button – it will put their username at the front of your tweet.

#10: Don’t be spammy!

There’s nothing worse than a Twitter account that just keeps bombarding you with ‘buy me’ posts, so DON’T be one of those people! Share interesting content and you’ll soon have a decent amount of followers.

Have you been previously avoiding Twitter, but are now ready to jump in? Maybe you’ve been using it for a while and have some great Twitter tips to share with others? Why not share your tips and advice on Twitter in the comments box below? 

This blog was first published on the VACT site in 2015.