This is where you can find out what Twitter is all about and how you can use it effectively. Mark has shared dozens of insights and tips re twitter on his blog for ambitious accountants.  Much of his advice is more widely applicable too. You can follow Mark on twitter here>>>

 

If you’re new to twitter you may want to start with one of these posts:

Other blog posts and explanations :

Mark is available to deliver talks on Twitter and on other aspects of Social media ‘without the hype’ in-house at firms/businesses and at conferences and seminars. His contact details are at the foot of the ‘About Mark’ page of this website.  

Social Media ebook – Mark has also written a 30 page guide to social media for accountants – without the hype. You can get it here >>>

Mark’s first blog post re accountants and twitter

Back in December 2008 Mark summarised his views as to why Accountants need not bother with twitter: Why accountants do not NEED to bother with twitter.

He still stands by that piece although his views have modified a little as he has watched a minority of accountants claim to be gaining some benefit from the time and effort that they devote to twitter. Many though continue to get it wrong and to waste their time as they don’t really ‘get it’.

The classic mistake

The vast majority of accountants who start using twitter mistakenly think of it as a potential route to market.They try to use it as a broadcast medium to ‘spray’ their message to as many random followers as possible. They then lose interest after a few weeks if they are not winning work or traffic to their websites. A minority of accountants are evidently enjoying their time on twitter and are persisting with it. A smaller number, it seems, are even actually winning some work through twitter. They are the patient ones.

Twitter lists for accountants

Mark has created two twitter lists that anyone can follow to find out how other UK accountants are using twitter. He adds to these lists as he becomes aware of new accountants on twitter. The lists curate the twitter feeds of almost 1,000 UK accountants and firms of accountants.

Other lists that Mark maintains and which you can ‘follow’ include:

There’s a link near the top left of each list if you should want to follow them.

How I use Twitter – Mark Lee

If you’re still reading it’s probably because  you’re thinking of following me on Twitter. Thanks for that.

To help you I’ve set out how I use Twitter and what you can expect from me in the way of ‘Tweets’ if you decide to follow me.  I’m not saying it’s the best way or even that it’s the right way; it’s just the way that I use it.

My approach

Firstly be aware, I typically tweet between five and twenty times a day. That can seem a lot if you don’t follow many people.

By the way if you want to know more about me, there are links to my websites, profiles and blogs on the right of this page. Or you could just check out the ‘About Mark‘ page.

How do I find time to tweet?

When I’m out and about I use echofon (a twitter app) on my iphone. I tweet while waiting for trains, cabs, meetings etc.  It takes no time out of the day.  I also use the ‘buffer’ app on my iphone so that I can spread out my tweets which then appear later when I may be otherwsie engaged.

When I’m in my office I use Tweetdeck on my Macbook (previously on my pc) to keep track of incoming and outgoing tweets.  I use Hootsuite when I’m in a library or someone else’s office.  I sometimes tweet while I’m waiting for the computer to do something, while on ‘hold’ on the phone or during lunch, tea, coffee breaks. Again, it doesn’t take much time out of the day.

I sometimes use Twitter as originally intended to provide  real time status updates of meetings, conferences and seminars where I’m speaking or which I’m attending, who with and where. I sometimes do this in advance using  a service called SocialOopmh (previously known as Tweetlater). There are alternatives to this such as Hootsuite and BrightKit.

I have also set up each of my blogs to update Twitter with a link every time I post a new item on:
- Boring Is Optional - hundreds of jokes and fun stuff for accountants; and
- Ambitious Accountants – tips and advice, much of it relevant to all professional advisers;

Beyond all this I post links (and I ReTweeet items and links) that I think are special and worthy of a wider audience.  Again I often use ‘buffer’ on my macbook to spread out such tweets.

I also publish my ponderings related to Twitter and to other items of interest. And I comment, reply and help others in reply to Tweets where I hope what I add will be of value.

My main interests on Twitter

These are: UK Accountants, social media – where relevant to accountants, Linkedin, UK tax matters, online networking, public speaking and Magic. Also certain TV shows, films and sundry other things.

If you follow a lot of the same people that I do, you’ll see every @ (reply) message that I send to them, and that they send to me.

And if you’re accessing Twitter through the website rather than using a client such as Tweetdeck, then it could get a bit annoying. You do get used to it after a while though, I promise!

 

So that’s how I use Twitter, and what you can expect if you follow me.

Will I follow you back?

Sorry, but I don’t automatically follow back everyone who follows me. I fear that could really clog up my inbox of tweets to read/scan. Equally I won’t automatically subscribe for your newsletters just because you’ve subscribed for mine. I think the same logic applies.

If you expect follow backs from everyone you follow then you probably don’t understand twitter and/or are following the advice of someone who doesn’t really ‘get’ twitter – whatever they may say.  I’m notionally following around 630 people (as at Dec 2012). Many of them rarely tweet and anyway I only have time to dip in and out of the stream of tweets they all post. I doubt many people see everything I tweet either.

Do bear in mind that I do follow my twitter lists (see above) – without automatically following each and every person I add to the lists. And that’s how I tend to keep track of how and what accountants are doing on twitter.

Beyond that I may follow someone if an RT or reply from someone I follow motivates me to check out a stranger’s twitter feed and it looks like it might be of interest. And sometimes I may see an intriguing reference or link in the media. Again I generally have a look at recent tweets before adding anyone.

That’s all folks!

Hopefully if this hasn’t put you off, and you’ll be sending me a “Hello” message @BookMarkLee very soon!

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