As we talk about SEO and gaining readers, one key is to "be everywhere" online. The more exposure you have, the greater your chances of being found and followed.
If your readers (and potential readers) hang out on Twitter, you should too! (If you're unfamiliar with Twitter & how it works, check out Mashable's Twitter Guide.) I saw a HUGE boost in my readership when I got actively involved on Twitter.
1. Schedule Twitter Time
The biggest thing I've learned about Twitter is that it can be a major time-suck. Major. My #1 tip is to schedule "Twitter time" and stick to it. Otherwise, your time will be whittled away slowly and your productivity will decrease significantly.
2. Be Strategic
Once you've determined when you'll be on Twitter, determine beforehand what you'll do once there. How long will you be on? What hashtags will you read (see below)? Decide which of your posts you'll tweet. Etc.
3. Be Helpful
Offer useful tips or answer questions thoughtfully. Give more than you take.
4. Make Your Tweets Attention-Grabbing
Ask questions or link to great resources. "How to…" or "10 Tips…" are great attention-grabbing tweets too.
5. Make Your Tweets Short
…so they are easily retweeted by others.
6. Post Tweets at the Right Time
Think about the type of people most likely to appreciate your tweet and think about when they are most likely to be on Twitter. Post your tweet then.
7. Use Hashtags
Hashtags provide a loose way of organizing tweets so you can follow what others are saying about a particular topic. So, for example, the #savvyblogging hashtag is where people share helpful tips about blogging.
Using hashtags yourself puts your tweet in front of the people who are most likely to respond. To use a hashtag, simply include it (i.e. "#savvyblogging") somewhere in your tweet. Don't forget the pound sign which makes a hashtag a hashtag.
You can find hashtags by searching a site like hashtags.org, but personally, I just take note of the hashtags the people I'm following are using. Simply click on a hashtag to see all the tweets in that stream.
8. Don't spam
This goes without saying, but if you want people to trust you, be trustworthy.
What about you? What are your best Twitter tips?