Wednesday, October 29, 2008

how not to sound like a zombie on twitter

One of the most enlightening things about my extreme twitter experience has been to learn which tools are effective in building a twitter audience--and which are not.

For instance, by signing up for a service like TweetLater,  you can enhance your chances of retaining new followers by generating a welcome message to accompany the standard alert they receive from Twitter. I've never gone to this extreme myself, but check out this auto-greeting sent last week by the other twittering Betty Draper. Hats off to her, I think it's a winner:

Will you be my friend? My husband Don is on an endless ‘business trip’ and I’m not even sure I need him, anyway.

Her appeal, though canned,  is effective for three reasons: it sounds personal, it gives followers an idea of what kind of content to expect and is 100% free of marketing jargon. Twitter newbies might even be convinced that January Jones is staring at a screen somewhere, breathlessly awaiting their next post. 

Of course not every auto-greeting is as savvy as this one. Most are salespitches for things you don't want, from someone who obviously hasn't read your tweets, and sound transparently bot-generated, making you want to unfollow promptly. (Suspect you're one of these clueless senders? Track who unfollows you, and when. Sign up for Qwitter.)

Here are the lamest auto-greetings I received, tweeting as Betty Draper. Proof that as useful as bots and zombies can be, they still can't do the job of a good copywriter.

Elizabeth, thx for following.
— Beware the bot that formalizes nicknames.

Hi! I am a personal development coach. What are you doing in your life and your business?
—I'm an imaginary character in 1962. The only personal development coach here is Dear Abby.

Thanks for the follow. Btw, what are you working on at the mo?


Hi! Feel free to ask my your most pressing lead generation questions for real estate.
— Not even if divorce puts the Ossining house on the market.

Hey cool! In one tweet, what makes you unique?
— It would take a whole season.

Let's make Money Online Together!!
— Sure! I've been sitting around just waiting to meet a business partner this way.

Hi, Champion! Special Bonus for you "177 Motivational Success Quote"
— Um, did you mean to follow my horse?

Hi, would love to know what you think of my blog.
— Enough about you. Let's talk about you.

Thanks for the follow! Hope you have a fabulous day!!! The Blouse Gap Eliminator 
—Talk about a product with limited market potential. Better try @joan_holloway or @jane_siegel.  


Anonymous said...

What's a nice girl like you doing on Twitter?

Jeanine Marie said...

Thank you for adding me. Thank you for having such an interesting blog.

The Stiletto Mom said...

Found you through twitter. Following you back...we have a lot in common. I am in fact, the oldest person in online ad sales in the Southwest. We can grouse about all these young nippers together. :)

I loved this post, sort of amazing the stuff you hear a somewhat painful sort of way!

Nguyen Duong said...

Thanks for the follow. Wanna meet sexy singles right now?

Ad Broad, oldest working writer in advertising said...

@bob Sometimes I wonder that myself...;)

@catnip Thanks for the read. And kind words.

@stiletto mom Oh, my. We should meetup for Geritol martinis sometime ;)

@windo Wow. An autobot that even posts comments. Impressive.