Monday, 20 June 2011

12 days of twitter

I have been dabbling sporadically with twitter for a while and wasn't really sure why. I blog on here about a variety of things and had attracted a respectable number of followers on twitter and hits to the website but for reasons that seemed unclear many were in US, India and Australia and so unlikely to actually need my homeopathic services. The vast majority of people who come to see me for a consultation come via word of mouth recommendations and many of them don't do the internet at all. Locally there don't seem to be many people in the twittersphere and so I wasn't sure whether it was worth bothering with.

When a friend told me that Leeds based company Reach Further were offering a free 12 days of twitter course I thought I might as well sign up and see what happened - it was a revelation. I was pondering what to write on here about my experiences but Pete Stevens (@petejabber) beat me to it and I agree with pretty much everything he says. I am certainly no expert but do have much more of an idea about how it works and have more of an understanding about some of the tools like, buffer and klout which can be extremely useful.

There is still much conversing, learning and networking going on amongst us '12dot-ters' and we're having a tweetmeet in Leeds next month so can actually meet up in person.

I generally tweet about homeopathy, health in general, local stuff, gardening, eco issues, festivals, mental health and other random things like radio programmes that I liked that might interest others. Sometimes a tweet or a reply can spread like wildfire.

@treehugger tweets about sustainabilty and the other evening asked ' What is the best/worst/craziest thing you've seen/read/watched today?' I had just been looking at the Ecologist website and was shocked by an article about Monsanto being aware that Roundup causes birth defects so tweeted that.

I also replied with a bizarre story I'd seen on the BBC website about research on the social life of badgers which amused me. I must confess to having 'badger interests' - a friend Matty is in a band called Biscuithead and the Biscuit Badgers @biscuitbadgers and so they are always entertained by any badger related stories (see my recent festival blog for more on them)

Much to my bewilderment both stories got retweeted by loads of people and my klout rating shot up overnight. So I think the lesson is - you never know quite what might appeal to people, but it's almost certainly not what you'd expect!

A huge thank you to all at Reach Further and especially Liz Cable who guided us through the learning process. I can highly recommend them. They do a lot of on line courses for businesses using social media and also seminars and workshops in the Leeds area.

And if you're interested in my twitter musings Follow homeojo on Twitter