Monday, June 17, 2013

5 Easy Tips for Educators to Increase Twitter Followers and Interactions

When I first started blogging Twitter was a great avenue for me to share what I was writing while also providing me with ways to discover and interact with other bloggers and educators from around the globe.  Over time with different jobs (from TIS, to Classroom Teacher, to Curriculum Coordinator) and two kids, my influence and use of Twitter has not been as professionally oriented as I would like, but has still provided me with a method of staying connected to educators and education resources.  Below are some tips that I have learned that help me continue to gain followers and grow my PLN.

1.) Use a service like Twitterfeed or IFTTT (If This Then That) to automatically tweet blog posts from your favorite bloggers.  You can copy their RSS feed and add a mention and hashtag (the hashtag is the important addition).  Anytime they create a new post you will automatically tweet their blog post.  I have gained several followers through using these services.  One person did this for my blog when I was more active on Twitter and with my blog; often times her tweet would go out before my own.

2.) Blogging services often allow users to log in to comment on blog posts using their Twitter account information.  When commenting on blogs, utilize your Twitter account; then when comments appear on those blogs, readers will be able to connect with you.

3.) While working as a TIS I participated more often in #edchats on Twitter.  Following and commenting on this chat is a great way to connect with other educators.  It is also a simple and most likely a common way to gain followers and also discover other people to follow

4.) Search for hashtags and chats in your selected area of expertise, follow those chats, and then start participating in the discussions.  This is a valuable way to not only gain followers and discover new people to follow, but it also helps you easily find people who share the same interest as you.  You can find a chat for different levels of education, different subjects, for administrators, coaches, etc.  When I went back to the classroom for a year I found myself looking at the Social Studies (#sschat) feed daily to discover the newest resources.  I highly reccomend viewing the Index of Education Chats Google Doc to learn more.

5.) Twitter allows users to create lists.  If you create a public list and add people to it, Twitter notifies users when they are added to a list.  Lists are also a great way to organize who you are following and also lets other users know that you value their tweets enough to add them to a list so they don't get lost in the Twitter feed.  This notification might be enough to encourage someone to follow you back.

If you are transitioning or utilizing Google+, Tip 1 and 2 would apply as well.  

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