Jack Martin // Aug 14 2012
First impressions are important. I remember when I was younger; I met a girl on a cruise that was high class and a lot wealthier than I was. Ordinarily she wouldn’t have given me a second glance, but after I saved her from an ill-advised swim, we fell in love almost immediately, even though she was engaged.
Our class differences didn’t matter in that perfect moment, and it seemed like our love was meant to last forever. She even let me sketch her in the nude, which was basically awesome. The only reason our love never worked out was my death in 1912.
True, that’s actually the plot of the 1997 blockbuster film Titanic, but it still illustrates my point that first impressions are important. And that’s exactly what I’m talking about for Twitter Tuesday.
One Twitter feature I haven’t seen much buzz around is the profile summary you see when you click on someone’s Twitter handle. It used to be that a click on someone’s handle would take you directly to their profile – now, before you can click through to someone’s complete profile, you’ll see this cute little profile summary pop up.
Isn’t that lovely? Yes. Yes it is.
That profile summary is how people first meet you. It’s your short resume. Your elevator pitch.
So let’s take a look at what people are going to see about you when they reach this profile summary. There are some steps you can take to optimize your Twitter profile for this.
Your profile picture is the only true image in your profile summary, and it even appears four times — so you know it’s the most important part.
And you know how I feel about profile pictures. Your profile picture matters most on Twitter, where people only know you by your short sentences and picture. Find a great headshot, or something that represents your Twitter personality.
[emailoptin type="social"][/emailoptin]Your Twitter profile summary comes up when someone clicks on your name. And why would someone click on your name? Because they want to know more about you. And more importantly – because they’re looking for a reason to follow you. Give them a reason!
Having a great Twitter bio is a great place to give that reason. There is a lot you can do with your 160 character bio to tell people who you are. My main advice is to be original. So I’ll leave that difficult task up to you, and just list some things people don’t want to see in your bio:
And back to Ellen DeGeneres’ profile summary. Nothing like some good, old-fashioned social proof to convince people you’re worth a follow, right? In your profile summary, we’ve got:
What do your follow numbers say about you?
The final main attribute of your profile summary is the section containing your last three tweets. This won’t show your retweets, but @ replies do show up.
This is the hardest section of your profile summary to optimize. Your last three tweets might perfectly represent your presence on Twitter. But that doesn’t mean you’re going to stop tweeting. It’s best not to stress about this too much – just focus on good tweeting and it won’t be an issue.
There is a little more going on in your Twitter profile summary that I haven’t mentioned yet:
This post isn’t just about optimizing your profile summary – it’s about understanding the first impression you give on Twitter. Whether it’s the details you can edit or the ones beyond your control, you should know what you look like when you walk out onto the Twitter field.
How do you make a good first impression on Twitter? Let us know in the comments. Oh, and retweet me if someone you love needs to read this post.
Are you making the right first impression on Twitter? portent.co/PmT7Sx
— jack martin (@jackthemartin) August 14, 2012