Beginning follower count: 0
Ending follower count: 70
For this class I decided to start over with a brand new Twitter account. I created my old account in high school and used it primarily to tweet sarcastic things to my friends because it was the only social media site at school that wasn’t blocked. I wasn’t really using the account at all lately so I decided that this class with would be the perfect opportunity to start fresh with a new account. I decided to keep it professional so that it will be a tool for me to use as I network during my job search. My old Twitter account was always private so it has been an interesting experience to tweet publicly for the whole world to (potentially) see. It has been a real learning process to figure out how to successfully use Twitter for good.
I found it was a struggle to build up my follower base from nothing. A lot of my friends don’t use Twitter, or if they do it’s just for silly stuff so I decided not to follow them on this new account. I was really confused at first as to how to get random people to engage with me. During the month of September (my first month of tweeting), I only gained 18 followers, and most of them were my classmates. I learned that I had to be very active with my account and go out to engage with other people.
I gained more followers in October and November. This is when I started tweeting more about things that interest me outside of the class assignments. I mainly starting focusing on my interests of how the fields of media and education come together. One topic within that is media literacy. I started following media literacy organizations and people who tweet about media literacy. I made it my mission to engage with them. I found that this helped me gain more followers. Within tweeting about media and education, I found it useful to share content that other people would want to share like resources to help classroom teachers with using media and technology. I also gained followers while tweeting about Media Literacy Week, which happened at the beginning of November. By using #MediaLitWk, I was able to join in the conversation with top scholars in the field across the country.
One of my biggest challenges with Twitter was figuring out to say what I needed to in 140 characters. I primarily use Facebook and Instagram so I am used to being able to write a small novel for a post. Over the course of this semester, I figured out how to write more concisely and incorporate hashtags into the text itself more. With my social media accounts that are private, I just use hashtags to say sarcastic things. During this class, I realized how powerful hashtags can be when used properly for good. Using hashtags that are popular and trending hashtags led to more engagement and followers. I found that using #socialmedia #medialiteracy #virtualreality #edtech got me added to quite a few lists related to those topics. As of today, I am part of 29 Twitter lists. Hopefully as people see my content in those lists, they will decide to follow me.
I’ve found that tweeting about causes and issues I really care about helped me connect with important followers:
I really care about the missions of It Can Wait and Better Make Room, and by tweeting at them, I got them to follow me. I also find it interesting that Taye Diggs followed me out of nowhere. He is a Syracuse University Alum, but I don’t know why else he would follow me. It’s still cool though!
Right now my Klout score is 54, which I am pretty proud of since it is above average. I am surprised it is this high since I don’t have that many followers, but I think it is because I do have followers who themselves have lots of followers. My increase in Klout score corresponds to my increase in Twitter followers when I started targeting my tweets more to my interests.
I know that 70 is not a lot of Twitter followers, but I am proud of myself for getting there from starting over at 0! Hopefully I will continue to grow my follower base and get to 100 soon.