Twitter Marketing For Dummies That Don’t Even Know They Are Dummies

Your so-called “Twitter Marketing Strategy” is awfully wrong. And the stuff that most “Social Media Experts” preach is awfully wrong as well.

twitter marketing for dummies

So in this “For Dummies” Guide I’m inviting you to downgrade your status back to “Dummy” (if you think you know it all) and rewrite your misconceptions about “Twitter Marketing” to those that actually work.

You’re lucky if this guide is the first thing you’re reading about Twitter Marketing as it will save you from wasting countless hours of your life doing pointless things that don’t bring any visible result.

…and if my intro pissed you off, you should know that I have all the rights in the world to say what I say, for a few years back I wrote a mammoth article about Twitter Marketing (that got 600 tweets) with tons of ideas and stats, most of which today look absolutely pointless to me. Here, have it: “Twitter Marketing Guide: Bigger, Longer & Uncut”

The Monstrous Misconception of “Twitter Marketing”

For those of you who?ve already dabbled with Twitter, you?re probably curious why it never gets you any solid traffic. Sure, maybe a bit here and there will come your way, but other than that the traffic is nonexistent.

(Even though you?ve been getting more followers and tweeting great stuff for your followers, like “Social Media Experts” preach)

Let me tell you what?s missing from your approach:

[tweet_box]You need OTHER people to tweet your stuff. Your own tweets wont bring much traffic.[/tweet_box]

…and not just any “other people” – you need the influencers (a.k.a. the popular bloggers) to tweet your stuff.

That’s the real deal! But most of “Twitter Marketing” tips I see today are focused on “growing your following” and “tweeting relevant and timely stuff” – which is generally pointless.

Confused? Don’t worry, just keep reading…

The 6 Basics of Twitter Marketing For Dummies

This article is called “Twitter Marketing for Dummies” as opposed to “Ultimate Scientific Guide To Twitter Marketing”, so I’m only going to touch upon the very basics, please bear with me here.

But don’t worry, I promise to follow up with some more advanced ideas in future articles here on BloggerJet. Subscribe if you don’t want to miss them.

1. Setting up your Twitter profile

Can’t miss this basic step. It’s too fundamental to just skip it.

It is important because people who you connect with on Twitter may check your page to get to know you better. Make sure your profile looks good visually and your Twitter bio says something interesting about you.

You can check out this?Twitter Guide?by Kristi Hines for a basic run through on setting up your profile. It?s a pretty good guide for starting up and also offers some cool marketing advice, but for now just read the portion covering your profile setup.

One very important part is your profile picture. Make sure you won’t settle with something that’s just “average”. And here’s why:

  1. Why Your Twitter Profile Picture is More Important Than You Thought
  2. How Your Twitter Profile Picture Influences Your Follower Count
  3. Twitter Profile Picture Hall of Shame

The next super important part is your “Author Bio”. We’ve already had an awesome article about writing solid & effective author bios, and Twitter is no different (except for it should be much shorter there).

And the last one is the number of your twitter followers.

Twitter followers is your social proof. Anything below 1000 doesn’t look like you have any authority. Work hard to get your first 1000 followers and then just let it go (tweets from a person with 1000 followers and from a person with 2000 followers get almost the same amount of clicks, so just don’t bother).

  1. 7 Ways I Accidentally Got More Twitter Followers (and 7 Ways You Can on Purpose!)
  2. How To Dramatically Increase Your Twitter Following

But of course no strategy is better than mass following. Follow people in bulk and some of them will follow you back. Repeat till you’re happy with the number of your followers.

Wait, actually there IS a more effective way – just buy some followers on Fiverr, but most people won’t endorse that.

2. Integrating Twitter into your website

This is where most of your “Twitter Marketing” actually occurs. And the cool thing is that it’s almost on autopilot.

Lets do some maths…

You write an awesome article and you tweet it to 1000 followers that you have. How many visitors do you think you’ll get?

Hardly 10 (I have 1200 followers, I know for sure).

But what if 10 of your readers decide to tweet your article to THEIR followers?

If you’re lucky and all 10 people have at least 1000 followers each – you’ll get 10 visitors from each tweet. That’s 100 visits from 10 tweets! All for free. All on autopilot!

Got the idea?

But there’s more to it than that! If people enjoy your article, they might want to follow you on Twitter to get notified about the new ones and here is where you start getting followers on autopilot.

So we have two takeaways:

  1. Put Twitter buttons on your articles to have visitors tweet them easily;
  2. Put link to your Twitter profile on your website to have visitors follow you easily.

For the first one I recommend Sharebar or Digg Digg which are WordPress plugins that display a floating box with social media buttons next to your articles.

For the second one try Sociable or Shareaholic.

[fancy_box id=1]But hey! There’s more! [content_upgrade id=5356]Click here[/content_upgrade] to get my ultimate list of 15 Smart Tools?to get the most out of your Twitter marketing strategies.[/fancy_box]

3. Creating content that gets shared On Twitter

People won’t tweet your article just because there’s a “tweet” button on it, right?

The article itself should be awesome and it should motivate people to tweet it (by the way, do you know what motivates people to tweet stuff?).

So it seems like “Twitter Marketing” really comes down to writing super awesome content and putting “tweet” buttons on it. But read along!

To really get that viral quality to your posts check out?this awesome post by Derek Halpern. He provides a great roundup of what makes a post go viral.

But what are the action steps to making people tweet your stuff?

Well, it has been proven hundreds of times that if you end your article with a simple request to tweet it – a lot of people will actually do this. Especially when they feel grateful for learning tons of amazing stuff from you and they want to return that favour.

Another effective way would be to give them something awesome to tweet besides the actual article. I’m talking about quotes, takeaways or other catchy phrases that fit 140 characters of a tweet.

This is a brand new Twitter Marketing technique and it’s called “Tweetable Quotes”.

Like this one:

[tweet_box]Tweetable Quotes give your readers some great copy to pull to their Twitter updates[/tweet_box]

By filling your article with such Tweetable Quotes you’re motivating your readers to tweet more.

I actually wrote a nice article, explaining this strategy: How To Get 200% More Tweets On Your Articles.

And if you’re wondering how did I manage to create this cool Tweetable Quote above… I used TweetDis plugin for WordPress.

4. Getting influencers to tweet your content

Now when your content is great, easy to tweet and full of “tweetable quotes” – it’s about time you reach out to Twitter users with massive following and have them tweet your stuff.

Now THIS is what really brings tons of traffic!

Much has been already said about connecting with influencers and since this is a “For Dummies” guide I’m not going to cover it in detail.

The basic principles here are:

  1. Mention them in your article (make them look good);
  2. Be useful to them (do what they preach show them you did it, become their case-study);
  3. Write about things that they are interested in;
  4. Let them know about your article with a tweet or an email

One of my free lessons is actually devoted to this very topic and you can tell I know what I’m talking about once you read this case study of my own: How I Got $500 Worth of Tweets and Reached 900k People for Free

And yet again, epic content comes first – then everything else.

5. Connecting with others on Twitter

This one is not really about traffic. But hey “Twitter Marketing” isn’t purely about getting traffic from Twitter, right?

How about we touch upon community building and making connections?

Twitter is a perfect place to communicate with your readers and reach out to other bloggers.

It’s much easier than sending a personal email and not even slightly intrusive (people tweet tons of things to each other daily).

I suggest you to answer every tweet that is being sent your way and always say “thanks” when other people tweet or retweet your stuff.

First of all that’s just polite and secondly – those people that you get in touch with will feel more connected to you, so they will gladly tweet your next article, knowing that you will notice that and say thanks.

But of course as you become more popular and every new article gets a few hundred tweets it becomes impossible to thank everyone. Now this is a “For Dummies” guide, right? I’m considering you’re not a blogging superstar yet. So this will be quite effective for you.

When I was running Photodoto we were saving people who tweeted our articles into a spreadsheet. Not everyone of course, but those who had over 5k followers. And once we had a really stunning article published – we reached out to these people on Twitter. And guess what? Some of them tweeted the article!

This strategy works even better if you actually make friends with people who tweet your stuff and not only bother them when you need a tweet. Keep this in mind.

6. What you should be tweeting

The last point I have for you today.

Actually I wrote quite a solid post on what people tweet and why but just to make some practical advice out of it:

[tweet_box]Tweet for your followers, not for your own self if you want to get traffic from it[/tweet_box]

Just be authentic and do your best to serve people who are following you. Most of them had quite a specific reason for following you, so make sure you fit into this reasoning with your tweets.

I would give you some advice on the best times to tweet, but there’s a BufferApp tool that will automate your tweets and schedule them in the best possible times for maximum exposure. So this is no longer a question.

Tweet This Guide To Share It

Just like you, your friends also need to know what works on twitter and what doesn’t.

You may use tweetable takeaways below to tweet this article to your friends and followers.


  1. [tweet_dis]Having a neat memorable twitter profile helps you to connect with people on Twitter[/tweet_dis];
  2. [tweet_dis]Writing epic stuff makes people want to tweet it and follow you[/tweet_dis];
  3. [tweet_dis]Asking people to share your article actually works[/tweet_dis];
  4. [tweet_dis]Quotes, takeaways and catchy phrases in your article make visitors tweet more[/tweet_dis];
  5. [tweet_dis]Reaching out to influencers is more effective than growing your own followers[/tweet_dis].


  1. [tweet_dis]50k followers won’t bring you any traffic if you gained them with mass following[/tweet_dis];
  2. [tweet_dis]You won’t get much traffic from your own twitter followers[/tweet_dis];
  3. [tweet_dis]Tweeting 100 articles won’t get you as much followers as writing 1 article[/tweet_dis].

That’s it! You’re no longer a “Dummy”. I’ll be glad to discuss this article with you in comments and expand on the whole concept in my future articles next week.

And don’t forget to share it on Twitter! Lots of “Dummies” are waiting ;)

Tim Soulo is the Chief Marketing Officer and Product Advisor at Ahrefs, a leading tool trusted by hundreds of thousands of SEOs and marketers worldwide. His SEO-related data research studies have been cited by media giants, including Inc, TechCrunch, and VentureBeat. He's also a regular speaker at some of the largest industry conferences around the globe, such as PubCon (US), BrightonSEO (UK), and the Digital Marketers Australia Conference (AU).