Do you believe in Twitter?

New to Twitter?

Think that this is the place to be for your nonprofit, but, don’t know how to get started?

Well, I felt that way too.

But, I am going to share with you 5 steps that you can take to get your tweets off to the right start.

Here is what I recommend for your nonprofit organization to get its foot on the ground with Twitter:

1. Make sure your organizational profile is in order before you start making it available to the masses.  You only have one shot to make an impression, so take the time to get it right.  This includes your one-line bio, your photo, your design and any background graphics.  There are plenty of templates and suggestions available online to help.

2.  Decide if you want quantity or quality in terms of your followers.  Are you going to follow everyone that follows you?  Are you going to be selective in who you follow?  Who are the experts in your field?  Who is your target audience?  Give back more than you take.  Contribute.

3.  Begin to create a following for your nonprofit by first following, then join the conversation through asking questions and finding your friends online.  Tweet your blog, pay your followers, respond to requests, advertise your Twitter name

everywhere, run a contest, and most importantly think out of the box.

4.  A few rules you need to know!  Twitter is not about spamming others, it is about engaging in thoughtful conversation and acting as an expert resource.  Share what you know, learn from others, comment generously, retreat liberally, and do it all within 140

characters.

5.  Be active not passive in the Twitter world.  Always be on the lookout for content that you can respond or provide more information to.  And, this goes both ways.  Don’t be shy to ask for help either.  Twitter has the best of the best on it and they are open, willing, and able to talk with you and answer your most compelling questions.  And, don’t forget to look at the number of someone followers because when you are mentioned in their timeline, your name gets put in front of all their followers as well.

What at first can seem intimidating to the smaller nonprofit organization is in fact very simple.

Use Twitter to build your professional network, to develop a “help” desk for your organization, to connect with other organizations and most importantly to create and have meaningful conversations with your donors.

You can follow me on twitter @devconsolutio!