WILL TWITTER REPLACE BLOGS AS WE KNOW THEM?
I think we know the answer to that by now, but it’s worth exploring it in a little more detail. You see, the two mediums are very different. Twitter is famous for its brevity, which some people see as a bad thing but others (those who have already plugged into the trafﬁc it can generate) see as a huge beneﬁt.
Twitter can act as a forerunner to your blog. It can be a ﬂag waver to get people’s attention before funneling them over to where you want them to go. It also establishes a link with people in a very non-threatening way. You’re effectively saying, “Hey look, I wrote a new blog post today. See what you think . . .” and then handing the reins over to them.
So no—Twitter won’t and shouldn’t replace the standard blog. It should go hand in hand with it, and those who really understand that link will do well with both.
HOW TO USE TWITTER IN CONJUNCTION WITH YOUR BLOG
Okay so we know that Twitter can act as a kind of announcing tool that you can use whenever you make a new post on your blog. But it can be so much more than that if you know how to
use it properly.
This is where some creative thinking can really pay dividends. Sometimes it’s nice to just let people know you’ve written a new blog post, telling them roughly what it’s about and where to ﬁnd it. But Twitter is essentially a tool for getting in touch with people and letting them know what you’re doing, so why not take advantage of that and get your readers and followers
involved a bit more as well?
The best way to achieve this is to use your updates to ask questions rather than post statements all the time. It’s good to simply say something once in a while, but by asking a question you encourage your followers to tweet back at you and pull them a little further into your world.
There’s another beneﬁt of asking questions as well. If you’ve got a blog that you’ve been working on for a while, you’ll probably have run across times when you run a bit short on ideas. Ever felt like that? It would certainly be good if you could get some fresh input into your blog without giving over control to anyone else, wouldn’t it?
Welcome to Twitter!
There is no better place or method for getting some fresh input than this website. Lots of bloggers have caught onto this method of refreshing their blog and that’s because it works. Ask your readers what they’d like to see on your blog that isn’t already there. Try asking what they thought of your last blog post. Have you ever thought about putting a poll on your blog and asking people to vote through a tweet?
There are plenty of ways to generate extra trafﬁc to your blog and get people more involved in it by using your Twitter account to get involved with them. All you need to do is think of the best
questions to ask in your case.
If people start to tweet back at you, pay close attention to what they say. Some of them may unwittingly highlight certain areas of your topic that you hadn’t even thought about.
One chance comment through Twitter and you could be off and writing your next blog post within minutes. Stay alert and watch out for the nuggets of information other Twitterers will send you.
Be prepared to experiment
All the great bloggers have their own distinctive voice. It’s the same on Twitter. You wouldn’t think that people would have much room to express their own character in 140 characters but it is certainly possible, as you’ll see once you start exploring what other people have to say.
It may take you a while to ﬁnd your own voice and that’s ﬁne. Experiment with different styles for a while or just do what feels natural to you. You might make the decision for every tweet to
be in the form of a question. Alternatively you might make each one a statement.
The point is, everyone ﬁnds a different way of using Twitter to promote their blog. Your Twitter style will probably be very similar to your blogging style, and indeed they shouldn’t be too different otherwise you might ﬁnd you lose readers. You want to be as recognizable as possible.