Step One – Creating and Polishing Your Account
Want to support your friends who are content creators but don’t know much about social media?
This guide will teach you how to create a fan account on Twitter.
Basic Profile Setup
The look and feel.
When creating an account, keep in mind that there are general rules of etiquette on Twitter that go beyond what is outlined in the Terms of Service. Those rules of etiquette can look radically different depending on what part of Twitter you belong to and can change depending on the times (along with site updates), so when in doubt, you should take cues from active, friendly accounts that you enjoy.
The key is to focus on making your account look and feel like a person. That person doesn’t have to be human.
The key is to provide people with a welcoming social experience. Some people look for different things, and that’s okay. I’m a very aggressive and prolific Twitterer – and not everybody is looking for that, but I can promote my favorite artists and other content creators to the people who are looking for that.
Does that mean I have to comment? I thought I could just like and retweet!
Well, you should. Here’s how various actions on Twitter have an impact on promoting a post.
Likes < Retweets < Comments
Likes are shown specifically to the people who follow you, and nobody else. Even then, Likes have a lower priority than Retweets on your follower’s dashboards, and mostly serve to fill out space on accounts with low follower counts. If you followers follow enough people, they may not be able to see them at all. You should still do this, because Liking is free and people can browse your Likes if they enjoy your content.
Retweets put their content on your timeline, permanently, or until you un-retweet the post. They show the post to everyone that follows you on their dash.
Comments are weird. They act similar to tweets, in that if someone follows an account and also follows you, they’ll see your comment on their timeline responding to the main post. If they don’t follow the account you’re commenting on, sometimes they’ll just see the post. However, because comments can become chains and are also posts in their own right, they are effectively the best way to promote a post. Especially if you’re witty.
What does a good, basic Twitter setup look like?
🌟 GOOD JOB 🌟
Your Twitter description should always have the following fields filled:
- your pronouns (so that others know how to address you in the third person)
- your (doesn’t have to be real!) name (if you prefer to be addressed by something other than your handle)
- something about yourself – whether it’s your favorite quote, a description of your hobbies or area of expertise, or an actual bio
- a mention that your account is NSFW if you retweet content that contains extreme nudity or excessive violence
These fields are optional:
- general location (I would advise against giving your specific town or city), this helps local users find you on the search engine
- displaying your birthday (you don’t have to show the year, but Twitter will “celebrate” your birthday with an animation on your dash)
- your other social media (such as Instagram, Reddit, or WordPress).
What you should not put:
- excessively identifying personal information, such as your specific neighborhood or complex
- links to Facebook
This will help other users identify your account as one that is most likely to be an active, authentic Twitter user, rather than a bot or a sockpuppet.
What if your friend made content for your account? Well, you should credit them!
Do not be afraid to link to other people’s profiles if you’re trying to promote their work.
Outside of my direct team, I try to keep people in my header that tend not to produce regular posts but who make good content. Because of the sheer volume of Tweets that I put out in the day, my profile is seen by quite a few people, and therefore the more people I can bump, the better.
Are you curious about how much your engagement has an impact? You can see the analytics for your account by going to the lefthand menu on Twitter.com and selecting More > Analytics, or by visiting https://analytics.twitter.com/. This will take you to your own personal analytics page. This will break down your posts with your top engagement month by month, and also show you the top new followers of your account by month.
I’m going to follow this article up with a part two, where I will teach you how to write good content for Twitter – to support your favorite creators. If you’re looking for a guide on how to write good content for yourself, I’m also going to start a separate 101 lesson track for Twitter content creators. This will be an ongoing series. You can follow me for updates on Twitter with new announcements.