Are you making any of these 4 Massive Twitter Fails?

Are there things you’re doing on Twitter that have a negative effect on your efforts?

There are certain habits and time-saving behaviours that could actually be stopping Twitter working for you as a business generating superpower. And, if you’re not getting business results but find you spend lots of time on Twitter (or money if you’re outsourcing your tweeting) you might be making these massive Twitter fails without even realising it.

But that’s Okay…We all make mistakes!

Read on to find out 4 of the most common fails and how to rectify them.

1. Are You Too Busy For Small Talk?

You know that guy who is super quick at producing his business card and working a room with little interest in anyone else?

They exist on Twitter too. Don’t be that guy!

Communication and social chit chat is the bedrock of Twitter. You may think small talk is a waste of time but every relationship starts with and includes it.

It’s how authentic business relationships are formed, so if you’re not chit-chatting and having two-way conversations on Twitter (that means replying and responding to tweets), then what are you doing?


Make the Connections tab in your Twitter profile your BFF (Best Friend Forever) and the first stop whenever you access your Twitter account. This is where all the interactions by others are logged so you can see (and respond to) anyone who’s replied, mentioned or followed you.

2. What Would Your Mama Say?

No one wants to know how annoying you find your clients or how the proposal you’re working on is a boring drag; (okay, maybe we do but purely for our own entertainment).

Think about it. Is that the impression you want to portray? After all, you’re there to promote your products and services – we may be doing business together one day!


Think before you tweet. If it’s something you wouldn’t want your boss/parent/a tabloid journalist to know then don’t share it.

3. Do You Do The Robot?

If you think Twitter is about technology think again. It’s a channel for communication. A way for you to meet people who can help you grow your business.

An amazingly amplified awesome way!

Automating all of your tweets is like expecting your voicemail message to schedule your meetings and convert prospects into customers.

Don’t get me wrong, some automation is okay. Scheduling your updates throughout the day helps you reach more people while making the most of your time. That’s the sensible way to leverage Twitter for your business. But here are some Twitter auto-action sins to avoid:

  • Auto Direct Message people who follow you. We know you’re not really there and we’ve only just met so, no I don’t want your latest e-book, thanks.
  • Auto follow me when I follow you. You’re setting yourself up to receive loads of spam Direct Messages. That’s no concern of mine but it will annoy the hell out of you. Plus, it has zilch meaning (more on that below).
  • Using a validation service. Do you really get so much spam that you need me to verify that I’m human? It’s not the best way to start a new relationship. You’ve just asked if I’m a robot and expect me to jump through another hoop in my already busy day to follow you. No thanks.


Be wary of automation tools. Before using them consider your deepest intent. Are they just serving you or the peeps you want to connect with? The best measuring stick is knowing how YOU would feel being on the receiving end.

4. Do You Focus On Vanity Metrics?

Obsessing about how many connections you have is a waste of energy and a massive distraction. Worse, periodically updating us on your progress, or asking for help to achieve your goal of achieving X number of Twitter followers is super-duper dull.

Amassing high numbers of followers is not as important as making genuine connections, and in reality it’s a vanity metric. It doesn’t mean you’re brilliant at what you do or that you’re a must-know person, or that you have a following that hangs on your every word. It just means you….have lots of Twitter followers.


Stop fussing about the numbers. Concentrate on providing interesting stuff, joining in meaningful conversations and having fun, the rest will fall in to place. Think quality relationships over quantity, build a community of fans that love what you do and happily spread your messages instead. That’s when the magic happens.

What about you?

What fails are you seeing others make as you go about your day on Twitter?  Let me know what irks you in the comments below.


Alicia Cowan

Alicia Cowan is a social media strategist, consultant and trainer for small businesses with entrepreneurial spirit, and creator of Twitter Brilliance the online Twitter marketing training school.

Be the change that you want to see. Step into your leadership.




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