North Essex Mummy is a new blogger on the scene and writes anonymously – for now at least. She is expecting and has a glorious tummy which she is very proud to display and blogs about her pregnancy and the decisions that go with expecting a baby. New to the scene sometimes there can be hiccups, unexpected ones, here she warns all fellow bloggers having been stung on Twitter, the word to Essex Mummy
When you first start out using twitter to promote your blog it is a real rollercoaster ride, firstly you might put on a few posts about you and then a couple of blog links, sit back and see if you get a couple of followers. Suddenly you are sucked in and addicted!
I’m writing this blog to share my very newbie experience from the twittersphere after already having learned a few lessons on staying safe that hopefully you won’t have to.
Having tweeted about 9 times I was really pleased to have my first mention, someone had stumbled upon me read the blog and had shared it in their circle. This mention was;
“@northessexmummy is gd ….. then followed a short link.”
FAB I thought! They’d linked to me, I could be trending! First thing I did was click on the link to find out which blog they’d mentioned. I went straight to a website asking me to put in my email account so that I could win an iphone 4. Promptly closing down I started a virus scan on the PC. I was gutted, I wasn’t that great after all. Third mention about five days later;
“@northessexmummy Schmalizered ….. then another link”
Having no idea what this word meant but I clicked on the link anyway, again bursting to see what they had linked to. Only this one took me to a webpage that looked really similar to my antivirus software, there where pop ups and warnings and what looked like 20 Trojan files started running in the background, I tried to shut down and more warnings came, and I was worried that all our bank details were now safely in the hands of gang lords. It was really confusing and scary stuff. I’d caught a malware virus!
Both times I was left really deflated and took it very personally, why had they picked me – is there something in my blog that’s that bad? I went back and checked out their profiles trying to understand what had brought us together and why that had picked me.
From having this experience I read up on trolls as well, people who post to your page for no reason other than to insult or pester you. To get through this I think of a Star Wars analogy, there is a light side and dark side to the world, why should twitter be any different?
My new Twitter rules
- Begin by following verified groups, and see who mentions them or is retweeted by that group. As they are talking about things you are interested in you will have something in common which shouldn’t harm your PC or your esteem.
- NEVER click on a link or a mention from someone you know nothing about, always check out their profile first and see if you really want to have them in your circle. My iphone sales man had only ever tweeted about football and didn’t have any profile info or picture. My virus giver turned out to be a stroppy teenager who would have had no interest in my bump blog.
- Don’t take it personally, it’s not you its them them them! If you have a bad experience, ignore them or delete the post.
- If this isn’t enough you can report someone as spam very easily via their profile.
- Another way is to keep your account private. That way only people you connect with can share with you and view your tweets. The thought of someone else seeing that link on my feed and potentially getting a virus from me
- If you follow someone who is bombarding you, you can un-follow. I’d rather read two daily tweets from people I connect with that having to scroll through 100 marketing tweets to find them or even miss what they had to say.
After all that I also nearly got sucked in to following a fake Danny Boyle account during the rush of the 2012 opening night. So be careful! The great thing about twitter is that you can connect with really similar people, it’s not just a massive social network full of possibilities but also a very small one, you have the choice on how you use it. I’ve since found some great people out there and my confidence in blogging and networking is growing every day.
For more information check out the twitter help and support pages, I wish I’d seen these before I started. Find more Essex Mummy posts on her blog northessexmummy.wordpress.com and connect via Twitter @northessexmummy