TECH TIPS

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ONE – GETTING STARTED

Just because you don’t use Twitter doesn’t mean your clients don’t. Set aside 10 minutes a week to play in this world.

First up simply set up a Twitter account using your name. It will end up being something like Barnierubble @Barnierubble – though probably not Barnie Rubble! You can always change the name later – easily.

TWO – YOUR FIRST TWEET

So you’ve joined Twitter. Great. Now what? Send your first Tweet.

Something like: “Giving Twitter a shot – hope it helps me connect with my clients. Heard I can pick up tips on how to be a better PT too” is perfect.

Twitter’s own founders posted identical “just setting up my twttr” on their first go. Most people send something along the lines of “checking out Twitter – hi world!”.

And why not? It’s nice to be nice. A wee introduction about who you are, what you do and why you’re there is a good way to start – if you can squeeze all that into 140 characters!

It doesn’t matter if no one is following you yet – when they start to, they’ll see your first Tweet.

Give it a go and start talking to the world.

THREE – FIND PEOPLE TO TALK TO

So you’ve signed up to Twitter and sent your first tweet out into the ether. Feel a bit like you’re talking to yourself? Best find some followers to chat with. But with 320 MILLION active users sending around 500 million tweets A DAY, it can be quite hard to pick out who you want to connect with.

Start with what you know – much like Facebook, you can find friends by using your email contacts. Just click “find friends” on the right hand side of the page and follow the instructions.

You can also find new, interesting people or accounts to follow by searching for what you’re interested in. Pop “fitness nz” in and you get everything from company accounts to individuals trying out their own thing. Take time to browse and you’ll find friends, old and new.

Although you’ve probably joined Twitter to boost business, it can be fun too. Got a favourite comedian, singer or actress? Chances are they’re on Twitter, look them up and follow them to inject a bit of fun into your timeline.

You’ll find the list of users you follow, and your list of followers, will gradually grow over time as you chat with new people and discover new conversations.

FOUR – BOOST BUSINESS

You’ve joined Twitter, you’ve sent your first Tweet, you’ve found some interesting folk to follow and are hopefully having conversations with some of them. But you joined to boost business, right? Not for idle chit chat.

Twitter’s advanced search tool is your friend. You can find it here: https://twitter.com/search-advanced

You can use it to find people in your area talking about fitness. For example, ask it to find the exact phrase “personal trainer” in Christchurch, and you’ll find people in Christchurch talking about personal trainers. Add the words “me” and “I” into the search and you’ll only find people saying things like “I need a personal trainer” or “a personal trainer would really benefit me”.

You can search for whatever you like, then strike up a conversation with that person.

But before you go storming in with “HI, I’m a personal trainer, sign up with me here” stop and think. Twitter is like an online version of a huge coffee shop – people are having casual chats with each other. If you overheard someone in a coffee shop telling their friend they need a personal trainer, would you just charge over and hand them a price list? No. That’d be weird.

Instead, send them a Tweet asking them what they think they’d get from training, or something along those lines. They can read, they’ll see from your profile you are a PT and if they want to engage, they will.

Sometimes people Tweet “I’m looking for a personal trainer in Christchurch, any recommendations?”, in which case totally fire in with “I’m a PT based in Cashmere, have a look at my website and let me know if you want more info”.

Just bear in mind Twitter is a fun place for most people and they don’t appreciate being bombarded by someone looking for business. Go easy, strike up a conversation and see where it takes you.