Kid Goals for the New Year

This post was sponsored by Amazon as part of an Ambassador Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own

It’s a new year, which means lots of goal setting, reevaluating things done last year, and making changes to our lives. When making your list of things to change or improve on for the next year, have you ever taken the time to think about having a discussion concerning your kids screen time and what they have access to online? As your kids age, now is the perfect time to make updated decisions about parental controls and age filters for your kiddos!

For parents interested in adjusting their own settings for the new year, what are the steps/where do they find those settings (whether on their child’s Fire Kids Edition tablet or on Parent Dashboard)?

I appreciate having the ability to monitor and manage Emma Kate’s screen time and activities because while I love the technology afforded to her with FreeTime Unlimited, I want her to be well rounded in her playtime as well.

So my question is, are you involved in managing your kid’s technology uses and time?
A survey Amazon FreeTime commissioned with 1,000+ parents of children ages 3-10 found that:
97% of parents say they are at least somewhat involved in managing their kids’ use of technology and 9 in 10 parents want to be even more involved.
For 77% of parents, it’s important that the content on their child’s tablet or smartphone is age-appropriate. For 68% it’s important that the content is educational.
Almost all parents surveyed (95%), want their children to use smartphones or tablets for educational purposes.
However, most parents (75%) don’t want to hover over their children when they’re using devices and two thirds of parents want their kids to have the freedom to explore when using their tablet or smartphone.

Looking for age appropriate educational titles that are available in Amazon FreeTime Unlimited? Check out this selection below:

  • A Day with Caillou – FreeTime Unlimited Edition
  • Daniel Tiger’s Stop & Go Potty – Freetime Unlimited Version
  • Disney Buddies: ABCs
  • Elmo Loves 123s – FreeTime Unlimited Edition
  • PINKFONG Dino World – FreeTime Unlimited Edition
  • Teach Your Monster to Read – FreeTime Unlimited Edition
  • Toca Lab – FreeTime Unlimited Edition
  • Wonster Words ABC Phonics – FreeTime Unlimited Edition

So you may be saying “tell me more about the Fire Kids Edition Tablet and more about the parental controls and FreeTime Unlimited!” Say no more, I’ve got you covered.

The Fire Kids Edition Tablets are the #1 kids’ tablets in the U.S. and come with a kid-proof case and a 2-year guarantee. You can get a replacement no questions asked. Each one comes with a one year subscription to Amazon FreeTime unlimited, which gives you and your child access to over 30,000 books, videos, audible books, apps, and games. There are also Spanish language books, plus thousands of kid-friendly websites and web videos.

You can have peace of mind using the Parental Control settings in FreeTime, where parents can set time limits, change age filters, enable/disable web browser access, and you can even choose whether to allow in-app purchasing (that’s a big fat no for my child, ha!) Parents can also use Parent Dashboard to review the digital content their kids are using in FreeTime, determine how to manage time limits and educational goals, and remotely adjust their child’s FreeTime settings. I love helping Emma Kate set educational goals on her tablet!

Now that Emma Kate is almost four and a half, we are working on letter sounds, reading lots of books, and learning songs and Spanish words. I love how easy it is to work with her, and setting up the parental controls is a breeze. My favorites are the screen time limits and age filters. I also turn off the option that would just let her browse the web.

Here are a few more favorites:

  • Weekday and weekend settings—parents can set time limits by weekdays and weekends.
  • Bedtime—parents can control when FreeTime shuts down for the day and turns back on the next morning.
  • Learn First—parents can set daily goals for educational content, and block access to entertainment content until after educational goals are met each day.
  • Screen time by category—parents can restrict certain categories, such as apps and games, while leaving unlimited time for reading.
  • Total screen time—parents can choose a set amount of total screen time per day, after which the tablet will shut down for the day.
  • Age filters—parents can adjust settings to tailor the FreeTime experience for each child and ensure the content their kids are viewing is age-appropriate for them.

What are your goals for your kids this year when it comes to their education and screen time? I would love to hear!

Holiday Traditions Revisited

This post was sponsored by Amazon as part of an Ambassador Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

I am really big on traditions, especially around the holidays. So big, that one year at Christmas I cried hysterically because my family decided to “change things up” and go somewhere else for Christmas instead of my grandparent’s house per usual. I was devastated. Now that I have a child of my own, we have started some of our own traditions, as well as continuing a few from when I was a girl.

One thing that is different from…well I won’t say what year, let’s just say “way back when”, is the technology. Technology has made connecting, learning, and entertaining that much easier (and more fun!) and I love that there are options for Emma Kate. One of our favorites is the Fire HD 8 Kids Edition tablet. This tablet is the #1 kids’ tablets in the U.S. and comes with a kid-proof case. (My child is quite the dropper!) It also includes a two-year worry-free guarantee—meaning if it breaks, just send it back and Amazon will send you a new one without asking you a bunch of questions.

How do we incorporate this device into our holiday traditions? Easy! For example, we love to read to Emma Kate, especially Christmas books. It’s been fun to read titles right from her Fire HD 8 Kids Edition like Winter, Cold and Snow, and also listen to books audibly like The First Christmas Tree and the Great Sled Race.

For a lot of people (and usually for us, except for this year,) Christmas means traveling, which also equals bored kids in the car. Emma Kate loves it when we pre-download books, games and videos for her ahead of time to enjoy in the car.

There are even kid-friendly cookbooks available in Amazon FreeTime on the Fire HD 8 Kids Edition. What is Amazon FreeTime? Each tablet comes with a one-year subscription to Amazon FreeTime Unlimited, giving you access to over 20,000 books, videos, Audible books, educational apps, and games. There are also over 1,000 Spanish language books, videos, educational apps, Audible books, and more.

Another thing I love about this device is the Parent Dashboard. By using the Parental Control settings in FreeTime, parents can set time limits, adjust age filters, change web browser access, and turn on or off in-app purchasing. (That one is huge. Emma Kate is always trying to buy stuff!) You can also review the things your kiddos are using and seeing in FreeTime, and even remotely adjust your child’s FreeTime settings.

fire hd 8

We are all about education and learning games, so I love how the technology of the device allows Emma Kate to have fun and learn at the same time. (ssshhh don’t tell her she is learning!) It’s also something we can do together as I guide her, read with her, and watch alongside her. It has been such a great and fun addition to our holiday traditions this year, and I can’t wait to see how they evolve next year!

Buy One Give One With Aftershokz

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Aftershokz, however, all opinions are my own. Affiliate links may be present, where I get a small commission if you buy through my link.

It’s now November, and the holidays are upon us. It’s my favorite time of year, with all the beautiful decorations, movies on TV, parties, and events. However, there is one aspect of the holidays that can sometimes get overlooked, but it’s a really important one to me. The holidays are a time to give. To give of our time, our resources, and our love. It’s a great time to show your care for friends and strangers alike and recognize people for the goodness in their hearts.

This year, Aftershokz has made it super easy to give something to a deserving person, without it costing you anything extra. Were you maybe planning to buy some amazing wireless headphones this year? First, let me tell you why you need them, then why you need them specifically to give back to someone else with the buy one give one promotion.

In case you aren’t familiar with the brand, AfterShokz is a sport headphone company. These specific wireless headphones are amazing because they allow you to gain motivation from your music without blocking out your surroundings. They rest outside of the ears and use bone conduction technology to transmit sound. Also, AfterShokz headphones are extremely lightweight, and comfy. I usually forget that I am wearing them!

Now for the special promo: This Black Friday weekend, Aftershokz will be offering their wireless headphones at a discount along with a buy one, give one deal. For every order of wireless headphones on the website, they will be adding one FREE open boxed Trekz Titanium headphones, while supplies last.

The goal here is to pay it forward to someone else this holiday season, and Aftershokz is making it easier than ever.
In the pictures in this post, you can see me with my dear friend Kelley. She is such a wonderful, deserving friend and I knew immediately when I heard about this promotion, that she would be the recipient of my extra set of headphones.

Here more about Kelley, the promotion, and why she deserves this special gift in the video below.

Be sure to follow the hashtag #GiveGoodVibes, and use it as well as @aftershokz to show you giving your second pair of headphones to someone else. I can’t wait to see your photos. Happy giving!

How To Start a Blog: FREE E-Course

UPDATE: This post was originally published in 2016 and I updated it in October of 2018.

Blogging has changed my life. Literally. Before blogging, I was working a “regular” job, not feeling like I had a creative outlet, and I just felt lost. After I started my blog, not only did I start making money, but I met so many people who are now my best friends. I have had opportunities to travel, run awesome races, try new products, and really spread my wings. I think anyone can blog, and love helping people realize that they too can “do it.”

How to start a blog

However, I have found that one really long blog posts with instructions on how to do something can just be too big and overwhelming.

I have truly enjoyed the few e-courses I have participated in, and thought to myself “hey, I can do that!” Basically, if you choose to sign up for my free e-course, you will be getting a series of five days worth of emails on a topic near and dear to my heart, which is how to start a blog.

 

I wrote a blog post about three years ago with tips on starting your own blog, and to this day it is one of my number one most read posts of all time. The post was decent, but I feel like I barely scratched the surface and left a lot of readers hanging on exactly how to go about doing the things I talked about in my blog post. Enter my e-course!

how to start a blog free e-course

I am SO excited to be offering this to you, my awesome readers. I know there are a bunch of you out there who would love to start a blog (and would be great at it!) but have no idea where to begin. It can be scary and overwhelming, but it is totally doable. Back when I began blogging, I had no help and just learned as I went.  I want to help you to not make the same mistakes I did, and I want to simplify the process for you. Also, if you already have a blog, you may still enjoy the course because, in the last couple of days of it, I give some tips and tricks that could be helpful to you.

Take a step out of your comfort zone and give it a try. Everyone has a unique perspective on the world to share, something that makes you special. Your words matter, so don’t keep it to yourself!

Please don’t waste months trying to figure things out on your own when I have already done the hard work for you. Sign up for my five day free e-course and get to blogging. I can’t wait to see what you come up with! You can sign up by clicking the photo above or by clicking this link.

Related: 5 Reasons to get over your fear of starting a blog

PS: You can still sign up to get the free fitness and goal tracking printables.

When Someone Gets It Right

I have been blogging for a long time now, and have had the privilege of working with a lot of what people call “big brands.” Like many bloggers, I have a list–yes a literal physical LIST of “dream brands” that I have wanted to work with. As my blog has evolved, so has my special list, and I have always worked hard towards making contacts and connections, networking, and doing all the right things to get noticed by brands.

Why is my list what it is and why are there certain brands on it? Well, a few reasons. Let’s break them into three categories. First, some brands on my list are brands I just absolutely adore and would love to experience their product, service, or destination. Next, some brands are on the list because it’s a status thing–I mean let’s be real here. We can all say we aren’t competitive and that we don’t care when we get passed on an invite to an event or for a sponsored post, but it can be hard to not take things personally…so yes, some of the brands on my list are there simply for the sheer fact that when you get invited to work with them you KNOW it’s a special honor. #SorryNotSorry

Then there is a third category. A category that isn’t as glamorous or high profile to most. This category has brands in it that sure, you have heard of, but maybe you don’t know much about. You know that they work with influencers, and you are intrigued, but that’s about as far as it goes.

I’m going to be REALLY REAL with you right now. Before this past week, Kia fell in that little forgotten third category for me. The only thing I knew about Kia was that when I was a kid, people used to make fun of how crappy of a car it was. Literally, that. was. it. (I know, I’m so embarrassed to even admit that y’all.) So no, they weren’t on my special A list and I wasn’t constantly obsessed with reading tweets and recaps about the brand, desperately trying to make a connection. It wasn’t like that for me, but boy do I feel silly now, because it SHOULD have absolutely been like that for me now that I know what I know.

Do you ever get that really warm fuzzy happy feeling where you just can’t stop smiling, and you aren’t even sure why? That’s how I felt for the less than 48 hours I was in San Diego last week spending time with the amazing folks at Kia. My misconceptions about the brand quickly did a 180, not only as a blogger, but as a consumer.

I had no idea that nearly 40% of all Kia vehicles sold here are assembled in the U.S.A.

I had no idea that Kia is in the top 6 best car brands based on road test performance and reliability.

I had no idea they are in the top 3 in reliability according to Consumer Reports.

I had no idea they have been #1 in initial quality for two straight years according to J.D. Power.

Y’all, that’s just the basics. There is so much more that I learned when I actually got behind the wheel of the Stinger and the Sorento. Super classy, luxurious, and techie, these vehicles truly blew my expectations for the brand out of the water. I love a good underdog story, and I feel like Kia has a great one to tell. They were at the bottom, like the bottom of the bottom as far as car brands go, and just look at them now. I have only been in their “family” for a short time but I can’t help but burst with pride at how far they have come.

Now back to being an influencer. I tend to go off on tangents.

As I said, I have worked with a lot of brands over the years, and have been a part of a lot of different influencer programs. I have had some good experiences and some horrible experiences. I don’t talk much about it on the blog because I am a proper and classy southern lady, but I have had promises broken, contracts negated, and lies told to me by brands. It’s sad but true, and being taken advantage of is never fun. (especially when it’s online and you just want to reach through the screen and throat punch someone…Wait, what?) In the short time I have worked with this brand, I quickly learned that they truly treat everyone like family, and all of the Kia team I met are freaking amazing humans that I am lucky to call “my people.”

It truly is magic when a brand gets it right. Right with their influencers, and with their consumers. You guys, this brand has knocked both out of the park. I am one of those people that has had the same type of car since I was in college just because that was the “reliable brand” my family always bought. I never bothered to learn or explore any other options, and it’s a darn shame. For someone who thrives on reading and doing research for a living, I’m not really sure what I was thinking.

What I do know, is that I want my next car to be a Kia if at all possible. I am quite sentimental, and I tend to attach emotions and experiences to inanimate objects, and you bet I’m going to attach every little bit of amazing experience and emotion felt with my new Kia family to my next vehicle purchase. From the car karaoke, to the Krispy Kreme donuts and warm hospitality, I will remember it all.

Like I said, I’m quite the lucky girl to have gotten to work with a lot of brands on my dream list. It’s fun and a little surprising when one sneaks up on me and adds itself to my list without me even realizing it’s happening. That’s Kia for you. Stealing hearts, and being unforgettable. Keep it up y’all. You are doing an excellent job.

Kia is a brand that I never considered a dream brand to work with or purchase, but all that changed on an influencer trip to San Diego.

Ppsstttt: Are you heading to Mom 2.0? Kia will be there so MAKE SURE you go say hello. Tell them I sent you. I wish I was going, but unfortunately it’s not in the budget to fly across the country, especially when I have to save up for my new car. 😉

kia sorento

Disclosure: I was provided with flights, meals, and hotel accommodations for my trip to San Diego to experience Kia for myself, however all opinions are my own.

How to Get More Blog Readers

 

After the post I wrote about starting your own blog, I had a lot of questions along the lines of “ok, I started my blog, but how do I get readers?” Great question. Keep in mind it won’t happen overnight. The numbers I used to get excited about for a whole day on my blog are now what I get in an hour. But it took time, and lots of hard work. Here are a few simple things you can do to start building your pageviews.

7 tips and ways to get more blog readers and page views on your site

1.) Pinterest Pin It Button for Images. Pinterest is a great way to get traffic, but you have to use it effectively. That is a whole other post in and of itself, but this free WordPress plugin puts a pin it button on your picture when you hover over it (like on my blog) so readers can easily pin any photo on your post. Don’t forget to put descriptions on your photos so if they do get pinned, there is a better chance or them getting repinned!

2.) Comment on Other People’s Blogs/social media. While you are sitting around waiting for a blog or social media comment…so is everyone else. Take some initiative, and go comment with genuine comments on some blogs or social posts! I try to hit at least 5 in the morning and 5 in the afternoon/evening, more if time allows. Also I try to read NEW blogs and mix them in with old favorites. You will start to see people clicking over to your site from a comment you wrote on another blog!

3.) Interact with your readers. No one wants to feel like they are talking to an empty void, so try and reply to comments when you can, on your blog and on social media. People want to feel like you are a real person and that their time spend commenting wasn’t for nothing.

4.) Be active on social media. I avoided Twitter like the plague when I was first blogging because I didn’t understand it, but now it’s one of my preferred forms of social media and I get a ton of pageviews from it daily. Don’t just talk about your stuff, but engage in conversation with other people and make some friends! Also, Twitter chats are a great way to get exposure, more followers, and readers. Facebook and it’s every changing algorithm is a different animal all together, but I also try to at least like every comment left for me there. Instagram has become wildly popular, and don’t forget about stories! Interact with people on stories, answer questions, and comment. People will start to notice!

5.) Host a giveaway. This may cost you a little money, but could be worth it. You may even be able to get someone to donate a product. Put a post up on social media announcing your giveaway and have people enter, and share about the giveaway as an additional entry. That way, you get extra exposure! (I use Rafflecoptor, it’s free and so easy!)

6.) Write a guest post. A lot of bloggers will put out a call on their blog or on their Twitter or Facebook asking for guest posters. This is a great opportunity for you to be seen by new readers and get exposure on a more experienced blog. It takes a little time to write that extra post, but is definitely worth it if you are guest posting on more well known blogs! Some companies and brands will even let influencers do an Instagram takeover. This is a great way to get exposure from a new audience.

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7.) Be Yourself: People can sniff out a fake like a bloodhound. Don’t try and mimic your favorite people and blogs that you follow. Sure you can take tips from them and learn the right way to do things, but use your own voice and put your own unique spin on things. You will find your tribe and your following, just keep being consistent with these steps and don’t quit!

don’t forget, I highly recommend becoming self hosted. I use Bluehost, and WordPress is free through them, and the prices are very very reasonable. It’s also pretty user friendly. Click the image below for more info: (affiliate link)


 

QOTD: What is your best tip for getting more pageviews on your blog?

Common Social Media Manager Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

When I first started in the social media world, I made a lot of mistakes. I came on the scene as social media was first blossoming, so I had to learn and grow along with it, and so much has changed since I first started out! I honestly look back in shame at some of my social posts, because they are so bad and not the way you attract customers, make money, or deal with clients.

This is one of the reasons I created my courseI don’t want you to waste your time making the same mistakes I did. It took me many years of trial and error to make any real money in social media, and I want you to avoid that long waiting period, jump right in, and start making money.

Social media manager mistakes

Here are three of the most common mistakes people make on social media, and how my course will make sure this doesn’t happen to you:

    1. Telling the client “I will post whatever you want/tell me to post” when working on a proposal or deal. Wrong. If the client knew what they wanted posted, they wouldn’t need you! They are wanting you to help guide them and post what you think would be valuable in the marketplace because you are the expert. Create a plan for them, give them a proposal, and make it work for their business. My course will show you exactly how to do this with package pricing, proposal outlines, and how to approach potential clients the right way and convince them they need you.

 

  1.  2. Not charging enough: Some people are so afraid of offending anyone that they don’t charge enough to make the job worth their time. Then they are stuck in a contract where when it’s all said and done, they are making $5 an hour. Listen, I have given my pricing to a lot of people, and I have had WAY more people turn me down and say it’s too much for them than I have people agree and then start working with me. It’s just part of the business. Now, in the beginning to get that first client you may have to work for less than you want, but once you have that one client on your resume and get some experience under your belt, it’s probably time to up your prices. In my course, I show you exactly what I charge for each platform and why, how to figure out your pricing, and I also discuss how to get that first client so you can start making money quickly.

 

  1. 3.  Not paying attention to their analytics: A lot of people will make the same mistakes month after month on social media  because they aren’t paying attention to their analytics. There is so much to learn by looking at your numbers that can help show you what to change. For instance, if your Instagram insights tell you that the least amount of people are liking your posts at 5:00 in the morning, then stop posting at 5:00 in the morning! If you aren’t paying attention to your followers, demographics, age, and reading habits of your followers, you are doing a disservice to yourself and your client. In my course, I show you how to look at the analytics and use them as a tool to help you know when and what to post, and who to target for ads. No more guessing! I go into detail about my favorite tools for tracking, automation, and just making my life all around easier when it comes to social media.

Don’t be like me and make these mistakes. Learn how to be a social media manager the right way, and all in 21 days or less with my e-course HERE.

Social Media Manager Myths Busted

I hear crazy things about my job aaalll the time. Have you heard things like this before:

“Social media managers don’t make any money. It’s not even a real job.”

Or

“You will be tethered to your phone 24/7 if you get a job like that. It doesn’t sound very relaxing to always be on call.”

These are just two of the common myths I hear people talk about when discussing the job of a social media manager. Let me tell you a little something right here, right now, these are both NOT TRUE! Let’s break it down, plus I add in a 3rd myth:

1.) There is no money to be made in social media: I am living and breathing proof that there is money to be made in social media, and a lot of it! Some of the older generation tends to have a hard time seeing jobs from home as “real” jobs, but that is not something you are probably going to change, so don’t even worry about those opinions. When you are making more money than them and working way less hours, it won’t matter anyway, will it? While it is true some businesses have not yet gone over to the remote work side of things, even for their social media managers, there are PLENTY of businesses that have, and they are just waiting on you to make them a proposal and help them grow their online presence. In my course, I will teach you exactly how to pitch local businesses, and where to find nationwide jobs online. We will talk about proposal letters, what to include in a contract, and how to network with others to get that all important first client. I tell you exactly what I charge and why, and help you come up with your own pricing structure.

2.)You will be tied to your phone 24/7: Definitely not true, but totally up to you! While you do need to be available to your clients for problems and issues in a timely manner, no one expects you to be chained to your phone or computer 24/7. As long as you set expectations ahead of time when creating your contract, you can choose when your “office hours” will be, and how long is an appropriate amount of time to answer a client back. I discuss all of this in my course, and even give you a “day in the life” example of what a day looks like for me.

3.)You have to be an expert in Social Media to do this job: FALSE! While you DO need to have a basic understanding of social media/have experience using your own profiles, it’s not a requirement to have years and years of high level experience to do this job well. My e-course gives you lots of tips and tricks as well as social media best practices examples to make sure you are at the top of your game and can impress a client. Then it’s just making sure you learn a little bit every week so that you are constantly staying ahead of the ever changing curve.


Don’t let these myths stop you from doing something you want to do. You CAN work from home, you CAN work part time but make more than a part time salary, and you CAN make your own hours. I teach you all about it inside my e-course, Social Side Hustle.  Check it out now! 

Social Side Hustle: 21 Days to Becoming a Social Media Manager

It’s finally time you guys! What I have been promising for months now is finally done, and the doors will soon open for my e-course which is all about making money from home in social media. This course is for you if you want to work form home part time OR full time, learn how to automate work so that you are working SMARTER and not HARDER, and want a better life for you and your family.

I grew up in a very hard working family. It was instilled in me as a small child that you have to work hard to get what you want in life. While I still believe this to an extent, a lot of us have a tendency to take this a step too far. It hit me one day when I was complaining to my husband. I vividly remember saying to him: “It’s just not fair. I work SO HARD but don’t seem to be getting anywhere. I work way harder than XYZ, and they are doing so much better than me.”

Wow.

So much to digest in that simple sentence.

First I want to point out this isn’t a jealously thing, I am truly happy for those who are happy and successful, this was about me being really hard on myself and trying to “earn” my way to success. I thought that the more hours I put in, the more I focused, and the more sacrifices I made, it would all add up to success on my part. I mean, that’s the “rule” right?

Wrong.

While this is true for some people, what if I told you that you could be successful WITHOUT working more hours, without killing yourself and wearing yourself down, and without stressing about what to do next?

Work smarter, not harder.

As a social media manager, I have figured out a lot of ways, mostly by experience, research, and the knowledge of others, that have allowed me to work this way. I now spend way less time working than I did when I had a 9-5, but I am making more money, AND I get to work from home. How?

A lot of reasons. Not something I can share in one single blog post. Sure there is front in work, but once your processes are all set up, you can use tools and systems to your advantage and work smarter, not harder.

That’s why I created Social Side Hustle. Sure, you could spend years (like I did) spinning your wheels trying to crack the code, and sure, you would eventually figure it out because you are a smart cookie, OR, you could take my course, and learn everything you need to know to work for yourself from home, all in 21 days or less.

I will be sending out emails next week announcing my pre-sale, free webinar, and my launch, so you won’t want to miss it! Make sure you are on the list by signing up here, and you will also get a free social media manager checklist.

Get ready to work smarter and not harder!

 

My Top Twitter Tips

Some people recently have been wanting to shy away from Twitter and say it’s not a valid platform anymore, but I totally disagree. Not only is my following continuing to grow, but I have gotten several Twitter only paid campaigns from brands, gotten paid to host and participate in twitter chats, and have had larger brands tell me they want higher Twitter numbers before they would work with me. So in my opinion, building up your Twitter presence is a good idea.

The first thing you need to remember about Twitter is that you need to be a real person and follow, like, and retweet other people’s stuff, don’t just post your own things. Remember the 80/20 rule, only post 20% of your own content and 80% other people’s, This can be interesting articles, questions, rewteets of recipes, blog posts, sales from stores, etc. While I do automate most of my Twitter posts, I also go in daily and like, comment, and retweet live so that I am interacting in real time with people as well. Even just spending five minutes a day doing this can make a big difference. 

Also, you want to make sure you spread out your tweets to different times of the day. Remember time zones, so only posting in popular times for your time zone is doing your account a disservice since the lifespan of a tweet is so short. While there are certain times of day I focus more on, I try to spread things out and then check my analytics in Sprout Social and see how those posts performed. 

Earlier I mentioned that you need to follow other people. You don’t want to be that account that has 30,000 followers but you are following 100 people. So how do you find the right people to follow who may potentially follow you back? First, Twitter is great at suggesting accounts you may like, so check the sidebar first. Then, do a hashtag search for a tag that has to do with your brand or things you post about, and find people who also post about the same things. For instance, I could personally search hashtags like “Disney, runDisney, fitness running, momblogger, travel, cruise, vacation” and the like. Not only do you want to follow these people, but you want to follow THEIR followers, because those are the people most likely to follow YOU.

I mentioned Twitter chats earlier. These are a great place to get new followers, find like minded people for you to follow, and to just get some exposure in general. A Twitter chat will take place at a certain time and day, and will have a hashtag you should include on every single tweet you post during the chat. That way, other chat participants can find you, reply to you, and follow you. Make sure you talk with other participants, answer the questions the host is asking, and try to be useful if the topic is something you know a lot about. I LOVE using GIF’s in Twitter chats, they are fun, and a good way to be seen when there are tons of tweets in a hashtag feed. 

Another tool I would recommend utilizing on Twitter is Twitter lists. Here you can create separate lists of people you follow, and break them down however you want. If you wanted a list of only runners, you could create that, and then whenever you wanted running content to like or retweet, you just have to go into your list instead of scrolling through your whole feed which will have irrelevant information. From your profile, you should see a button near the top going across the menu that says “lists”. Here you can add lists, and also see what lists you are a member of (ones that others have added you to).

Also, pay special attention to your profile. Here you are given a profile photo and a header/cover photo so use this space wisely. Also be sure to add in your website or link to subscribe to your email list or get a freebie on your blog.

Did you know you can also pin a tweet to the top of your profile that will never be pushed down? Write a tweet you really love, maybe one that links to something important to you, and pin it as long as you like. I switch these out every couple of months. All you have to do is click the drop down on the top right of any tweet, and you should see the option to “pin to profile”. That’s it!

One more tip I use, and I will be honest and say I don’t do it all the time because I lack the time for it, but I personally like to send a tweet thanking someone for following me. Now, before I get flamed for saying this next thing, note this is JUST A PREFERENCE. But I absolutely loathe the automated DM’s I get when I follow people saying “thanks for the follow, you can also find me here here and here.” While I love to automate things, in this instance, I think a personal thank you goes a lot farther in people’s minds than an automation. Again, just a preference.

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Be sure to check my Facebook page tomorrow afternoon for a video going more in depth into my Twitter strategy!

QOTD: What is your favorite social media platform? Why?