Twitter Tip TuesdayTwitter Tip Tuesday is a weekly blog series from Sprout Social Insights.

Every Tuesday we’ll focus on just one Twitter Tip and show you how to integrate it into your social media strategy.

In case you missed the first two tips in our series “Things to Do After Creating Your Twitter Account” (this is number three), here’s the First Thing to Do After Creating Your Twitter Account and, of course, The Second Thing to Do After Creating Your Twitter Account.

Now that we have that out of the way, the third thing to do after you create your Twitter account is…

Create Your First 10 Tweets

What’s a Twitter account without tweets, right? But these aren’t just any tweets — they’re your first 10 tweets! The first tweets you post after creating a new account are going to be scrutinized very carefully as people decide whether or not you have the chops to be worthy of a “follow”.

Yes, although it is true that many people’s first tweet is often a variation of “I’m on Twitter…now what?” we’re here to tell you that there is a better way! Given the fact that so many new accounts have the same initial tone of puzzlement, confusion, of worst of all — repetitive self promotion, you have an opportunity to stand out from the crowd by the quality of your first 10 tweets.

Why 10?

Well, 10 tweets is about the maximum anyone will read from one person before moving on to someone else. And if you consider the first 10 tweets to be your “training tweets”, it’s a nice number to try a few different styles of tweets while you try to find your most genuine Twitter voice.

Your First Tweet

Don't broadcastWhat most people don’t realize when they first start with Twitter is that when you tweet you’re not broadcasting to “Twitter” (i.e. 200 million users), you are tweeting only to the people who follow you.

And on your first tweet, chances are nobody is following you, so you’re first tweet will not even be read by anyone — yet.

Although your first tweet may not be read in “real-time”, there are still ways to increase the chances of it being read and to attract the attention of potential followers.

If you include a hashtag in your tweet, like “Checking out Twitter as part of my overall #socialmedia strategy”, for example, then your first tweet has the potential to be read by millions of people around the world who are searching for the hashtag #socialmedia.

Or, consider sending a mention to a trusted friend on Twitter, for example “Hi @donpower — I finally took your advice and got a Twitter account.” Once again, you will increase your chances of your first tweet getting read if people are either searching for @donpower (to see what he’s been up to), or if @donpower replies to your tweet, then all of his followers will potentially see his reply to you and may check you out too.

The Next Nine (Thousand) Tweets

Yes, the advice is the same whether it’s for the next nine or nine thousand tweets — be interesting and engaging! While that may be easier said than done, here a few suggestions on what to include in your tweets to increase the likelihood that you’ll attract new followers.

  • Create a conversation — Engage people in genuine conversation. Ask people questions, ask them how their day is going, etc. Not only is this a great way to engage another person, it also shows your potential followers that you are a conversationalist, not a self promoter.
  • Be Useful — Put useful links in your tweets to information that’s pertinent to your target audience, even if your audience is very small at first. People will gradually come to know that your tweets add value and they will likely share or retweet your tweets, exposing you to a much larger audience.
  • Be Strategic — Include keywords in your tweets that people around the world are searching for. For example, every day thousands of people are searching for terms like social media, mobile, Foursquare, etc.By including these type of highly searched terms in your tweets, it’s likely that some of your tweets will be found in at least some of the search results for these terms.

What Do You Say?

Do you remember when you first started on Twitter? Would you change anything if you had your time back? Can you offer any advice to people just starting out? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

[Image Credit: estimmel]