"To tweet or not to tweet?".
About a year ago I wrote a post debating whether I should tweet or not. I asked for feedback from tweeters and non-tweeters alike, and the response was a little mixed to say the least. But now that I do use Twitter - albeit not obsessively - I can't see myself being without it. I've addressed the things that were stopping me before: I now have an iPhone, I'm more savvy about hashtags (especially as "hashtag x" has become an expression dropped into everyday conversation) and I've realised it's not nearly as complicated as I initially thought. It fills little holes that a blog alone cannot fill. A blog without Twitter and other social media platforms is like a car without all the extras - electric windows, air con or GPS: it runs perfectly well without all those things, but the journey there is so much easier and more comfortable with them.
For those who may be hesitant to use Twitter like I was a year ago, you might find my reasons for embracing the social media giant could change your mind...?
1. It's really fast and easy to use
It's a bit like texting. 140 characters or less, easy to retweet tweets you've read, send replies or thank yous to people. I also prefer to tweet via my laptop or iPad than my phone if I'm at home, because they're easier to type on.
2. You know if you're being talked about
You always know when you're being talked about if you're on Twitter (as long as you're copied in to the tweet), which you can retweet to your followers. In the bloggesphere it's great to be talked about - good or bad. It's all good publicity.
3. It's a good way to promote other bloggers
Likewise with point 2, I like to tweet about my favourite bloggers - it's a great way to get an instant message out there and show off their sartorial skills, plus they often retweet your tweets. Though I don't tweet about blog posts I like just so it gets retweeted, all their followers will then see your comments. And if they follow you or even visit your blog as a result, then it's an added bonus.
4. Get your blog posts tweeted for you
You can have your posts automatically fed into a tweet via twitterfeed.com - you could actually get away with never manually tweeting at all. It's a no brainer: it saves you having to remember to tweet that your new post is up, especially if you've scheduled a post (while you're out living your real life ;)
5. Get your tweets fed into Facebook
And like point 4, your tweets can be fed into your Facebook page so there's always activity going on there too (I rarely add anything manually to Facebook but it always looks regularly updated).
6. Reach a wider audience
If you want to talk to more than just fashion and style bloggers, it's a great way to reach a wider, more varied audience as Twitter recommends people to follow, and they'd do the same with you to others as well.
7. It's quicker than commenting on a blog post
Tweeting a comment about a post is often quicker and easier than leaving an actual comment on a blog post (but I don't personally believe tweeting should totally replace commenting on blogs). It also means that all your followers see what you've written about that blogger and may visit their blog. Spread the love, people.
8. Find out stuff about anything and everything
You find out about things you might never have otherwise: I discovered a great band (that are also local to me) through a mutual Twitter friend. You can also find out instantaneously about things happening if you're on Twitter at the time. For example, I saw that James McAvoy [my ultimate boy crush] was trending on Twitter and I wanted to know why - turns out I was missing him on a chat show talking about starring in Macbeth in the West End. It kicked me into action straight away: I got great tickets that probably would have gone within hours.
9. It can be interesting to follow celebs
It's actually quite fascinating following a handful of celebrities if you pick those that you're properly into. I've also chatted to the writer of a TV show I really liked - how else would I get to do that? She gave me some inside secrets when I asked a few in depth questions that I thought were worth asking.
10. You can thank bloggers directly
Twitter is a great way to thank bloggers for giveaway prizes and competitions you've won, plus adding in a photo of your prize. Or a general thank you for anything they've done for you. It's also a little plug for them as well.
11. You can gain a lot followers very quickly
I've gained nearly as many followers on Twitter within a few months as I did on Bloglovin in 18 months. You lose them too, but it all depends on how much you tweet and what you tweet.
12. Find like-minded lovers of your weird interests
You can find people who share your love of obscure things outside of fashion / beauty / style blogging - I've chatted with people about how my car looks like a stormtrooper, about a little BBC comedy that I loved and about being a Duran Duran fan for over 30 years. I don't want to post about that sort of stuff on my blog, but on Twitter you can have a little tête-à-tête about the mundane and the weird.
So I don't proclaim to be any kind of Twitter expert, nor do I think these reasons are necessarily the way others use it, or the way that it should be used. It's just what works (and has worked) for me.
What do you non-tweeters think? Have I convinced anyone....? And if we are bloggy friends but you're not on Twitter and you now sign up... tell me!
(And of course if you're a seasoned Tweeter with any points to add, please let me know in the comments!)