Sunday, 31 August 2014

A quick guide to Twitter bios....


Every couple of days I click on my Twitter followers to check out new ones and follow back those I'm interested in.  I'm guessing you do the same.  But how do you decided whether to follow back or not?  'Social media expert', 'chocaholic', 'loving life' - what do those bio details really mean? (ps, this is just a bit of fun....!)


Just 'Author' and nothing else
Doesn't really want to do Twitter but someone told him he ought to.  Your mutual follow will probably be your only interaction; he's off writing, somewhere.  

'Author and daydreamer'
Half way through writing a fantasy novel.  Will post tweets asking how to motivate oneself.

'Fuelled by coffee'
Either a) wants to give impression that he/she spends long hours tearing hair out over manuscript/other creative endeavour or b) is busy mum/office worker.

Expresses liking for wine and/or chocolate
Often a chick lit/romcom author and/or reader. Friendly, welcoming and supportive, and will be keen to interact on girly/domestic matters. Wishes to appeal to other chick lit/romance readers/authors/busy mums.

Bio is over-used 'profound' quote ('dance as though no-one is watching', 'be the change you want to see in the world', etc)
Doesn't actually live by any of these quotes, and otherwise has very little to say.  Possibly a spam profile.

Divides up | very important | sounding interests and | qualifications with | vertical lines
Will not interact, but will just post links to own and other posts about whatever very | important and | impressive things | are stated in bio.

'All round nice guy'
The ones I've come across who say this usually are, oddly!

'Eclectic Tastes'
Read a vampire book once and quite liked it. Watches the odd 'quirky' film as well as dramas featuring John Hannah/Bill Nighy.  Has tried Greek food. Subconsciously, hopes use of word 'eclectic' will impress.

'Be popular on Twitter!  Buy 10,000 followers for $5!'
...followed by user name of a jumble of letters.  Block. Now. They'll just keep sending you spam.  They're not people, they're just profiles set up by spammers and possible hackers.

'Aspiring author'
May request you read their stuff on Wattpad.  

'Debut author'
Usually friendly and keen to share stuff.

'Bestselling author'
Don't feel intimidated.  The 'bestselling' bit may not be absolutely true. In fact it might be a downright lie.  Those who truly are (ie the ones you've heard of) play themselves down on their bios (nothing to prove). May be too important to interact with you. Will tweet #writetips and blog posts about marketing.  You may experience an urge to be extremely rude to him/her.

'Critically acclaimed author'
Writes novels with lots of clever words in them and has some corking reviews from other critically acclaimed authors/literary sites.  Will post links to articles about state of publishing industry.  Tweets usually amusing/clever, sometimes self-consciously so.

'Award-winning author'
Again, don't be intimidated.  I've won an award for one of my books, too.  In fact I've won two.  But they weren't the Booker prize, they were online things set up by groups of avid readers/reviewers, as are many of those mentioned.  Nice to win, and I guess it shows you can write a bit, but all they really mean is a few people nominating then a bunch of others voting, not international acclaim.

'Avid reader.  Book Blogger'
If you're a writer, you want to follow these chaps. And treat them with respect!

'Please donate to my GoFundMe/Kickstart/GiveMeYourMoneyNow project to save my son/car/business/book that won't sell'
Well, it's up to you, but I know what I'd do...

Bio is articulate but includes swear words
Has not grown out of need to shock parents.  May challenge you to justify your lighthearted quips or be rude to you/unfollow you if you seem too mainstream

'Book Marketing Expert'
Will say hello/retweet you almost immediately, but once they realise you do not want to buy their services, you will never hear from them again.

'Oenophile'
If they even have to find a clever word for knocking back the Blossom Hill, imagine what their tweets are going to be like.... even if this is written with humour, proceed cautiously.

'#Follow back  #Retweeter #TeamWhatever'
Do not follow back.  Block if necessary; will send you spam.  Despite avatar of wholesome all American blonde girl, is probably male teenager from under-developed country, tweeting from internet cafe.

Bio invites you to check out website/buy product, thus: 'you can buy my book here (link)' or requests that you 'like' their Facebook page
Will send auto DM with annoying message, and auto 'thanks for follow, buy stuff from me now' tweets.  Will never interact or be interested in anything you have to say.  Thinks Twitter is free advertising site.

'Just here to have fun!'
Will comment in 'wacky' fashion on your tweets... 

'Thought Leader'
Bit of a twat

'Mediapreneur'
See 'thought leader'

'Mompreneur'
Stay at home mum who flogs things on ebay/makes own jewellery.  Worryingly perky.

'Photographer/Artist'
You should always follow these back because they post nice pictures

A claim to be any sort of 'guru', unless obviously being funny
Avoid like the plague (thank you, Paula!)

'SEO. Founder & CEO of (initials). Award Winning HRA Syndicated Educator. CNN. Speaker. Motivational Learning Consultant. SEOCNN'
No, I don't haven't got a clue what they do, either

Bio in different language from the one you speak
And the point is?

Expresses liking for vodka/whisky
Probably quite good fun

Bio is the description of a book/film
Person running profile will be interested only in selling you this book/promoting the film.  Only interaction will be to tag you in tweets suggesting you buy/watch/retweet it/try to get all your friends to buy/watch/retweet it.

'Following God's plan'
Will unfollow you as soon as you mention anything to do with knickers, vampires or alcohol, anyway.

'Single, honest and trustworthy guy, just want to be friends'
...or similar.  If accompanied by badly taken selfie (the sort that makes their neck and chin look huge, with the bathroom as a background), will probably just tweet 'hello' or 'how are you' once a week. You can actually feel them sitting there at their computer waiting for you to reply.  Usually harmless, sometimes pleasant, but be careful just in case. 

'I am lovely girls'
Porn site from a third world country


No bio at all
...can mean one of the following:
a) Spam profile
b) Person who has only registered half-heartedly and will never use site
c) Person who just doesn't know what to put on bio yet - what the hell, if they look nice, follow them back anyway!

***Take care...***
A new one I've noticed a lot lately.  A picture of an attractive woman that looks real enough.  The 'header pic' is a lovely scenery shot.  The bio is just a profound saying.  I tend to get clumps of these, four or five at a time.  I think they're potential hackers/spammers.  These people are getting more clever; they set up profiles that look real, then turn them into what they're really to be used for once they have many followers.



I'm sure you can think of more...did I once describe myself as 'award-winning' because someone said, what the hell, even a small award is good for promotion???  Yes, but I changed it after half a day as it made me feel silly!


57 comments:

  1. This really made me laugh out loud! Now I am no longer a Twitter newbie, I recognise so many of these and I have to agree with so many of your descriptions. Off to check mine again now in case I fit into one of your categories! Don't wanna be weird ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, I daresay I've offended a few people, Julie, which is why I expressed (more than once!) that it's only a bit of fun...!!! And that I'm not without sin myself, ha ha! Every time I do a follow back session I notice patterns, and the article kind of began to form in my head..... :^D

      Delete
  2. Gave me a good giggle - thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yep. I've been trawling Twitter to find some more followers ....and share my humble wisdom and life insights with a wider audience and you very soon pick out the gold. There are some funny bios out there - one wonders why people write them and who they aim them at. Avid readers, booklovers, never without a book etc are THE PEOPLE in my 'book! Loved this T

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I am more likely to follow someone whose bio just says 'Writer' than those with a load of 'clever' stuff in it, CH! I follow back those who seem interesting, amusing and share at least one of my interests. Anyone who claims to be a 'mediapreneur' can forget it :^D

      Delete
  4. Great list. Enough to put anyone off twitter? Not really - but those of us who are there can recognise all of these!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That was what I hoped.....!!! Thanks :)

      Delete
  5. Oh dear... off to check what I've written in my profile...

    lol brilliant, Terry, just brilliant!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Louise - every time I see 'comment waiting approval' I am dreading it's going to be someone who's really offended!!! Glad you liked :^D

      Delete
  6. Great post! Although I mention chocolate in my bio which apparently means I like discussing girly and domestic matters...slightly worrying as that's not me at all haha

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ahem - keen to attract authors and readers, and your own blog posts about your domestic life....!!! Well, I was halfway there! This post is made up on tongue in cheek, blinkered generalisations, you understand :^D :^D

      Delete
  7. Really good, should make some people pull their socks up if they are keen to get to the right readers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thing is, Rosie, the people who read others' blog posts tend to be the people with sensible bios!!

      Delete
  8. Replies
    1. Thank you! Happy to be of service :)

      Delete
  9. This was fun. A good laugh on a Monday. Loved it.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Wow, this was very interested. I think you actually hit the nail on the head with a few:)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Great post Terry, informative and funny!
    Must just check my bio...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm still waiting for the comment from someone I've offended, Claire....! Perhaps they've just unfollowed me instead! :)

      Delete
  12. Someone once told me to avoid anyone who uses the word "guru" in their profile. Or at least pity them. Lately I've begun to discover that people are attracted to my profile because of what lists I keep. I am considering dumping the one on Motivation and Leadership because it attracts such schlock. And then there are all the quote accounts, no doubt because I post quotes. How many different Twitter versions of Nietzche can there be out there, really? Looking at those more carefully recently I discovered most of them are spam accounts - six to twelve quotes, then some clickbait. Amazing how often Nietzche is interested in bad celebrity makeup.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love this comment, Paula - I feel you are on my wavelength!!!!!! I never follow quote accounts, or anyone who has them as a bio - there are not many like your good self who post them intelligently, and I don't think half the quote posters have any idea where they originated from. MY friend @i_hauser tweeted yesterday something along the lines of, if you MUST quote Hemmingway 5 times a day, at least give us the name of the book it's from, and quote it correctly....!!! That's most interesting re your investigation into the actual profiles. Incidentally, this post has had about 250 view in the last couple of days and I haven't posted it at all - it must be 'doing the rounds'!!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Oh dear, I've seen all of these, TT. I suppose everyone's different, but I tend to go for the bios that have something in them that speaks to me personally…erm…as in…uh..boats? But that said, your list here gave me a good giggle. I don't know how some people have the gall to write what stuff like 'coolest dude on Twitter' or - what was it you said? Thought leader? Yes. Right.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I actually wouldn't mind 'coolest dude on Twitter' - at least it's got a bit of humour attached!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Have to look up eclictic...

    ReplyDelete
  17. Oh Terry, you've just given me my first laugh of the day and it's just gone 10 pm so you can tell how it's going at the moment!! I loved this - all of it so, so true and recognisable. The same thoughts go through your mind as go through mine when I read these bios...I loved 'Thought Leader' - priceless!! So many times I read these bios and I just think...What the hell is that? I have no idea what this person is about, how can they expect me to follow them from that load of twaddle...thanks for sharing :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha, glad you're on the same wavelength as me, and that I amused you! I only follow back about a quarter of the ones who follow me, these days..... anyone who claims to be any sort of social media or marketing expert is a definite no-no!

      Delete
  18. "I am lovely girls!" !!! That made me cry....Also like the one about the all-American blonde girl being some miscreant teen-boy in an under-developed country in a cafe..
    That is all so true, that's hilarious!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thought you'd appreciate it!!!! I did actually see 'I am lovely girls' !!

      Delete
  19. Wonderful, and very informative as well! Shared. :) x

    ReplyDelete
  20. I just checked mine. Phew, I think mine's ok! Although I do have 'go cats' so most people probably think I just really like cats (which I do anyway) but it's my football team!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I just reread this and saw my previous comment which said that it had made me laugh out loud. It just did again. Thanks for the smile ;)

    ReplyDelete
  22. You are hilarious. I better check my bio right now! The ones who say nothing...I think they might think they're being mysterious and hip as well as what you said. It seems to be a trend with new users. "I'm too cool to post a bio. My pic says it all."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh yeah, I never thought of it like that! The other ones that make me laugh are ones who claim to be writers, but manage to get about 4 punctuation, spelling and grammar errors in their Twitter bio alone!

      Delete
  23. Prefacing this as a joke did nothing to make it less accurate. Have you tried comedy? You're a natural.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I just did, Anita! Thanks - I've always done this sort of thing, mostly to amuse myself, really! :)

      Delete
  24. I'm TOTALLY changing my bio to 'Eclectic Tastes' because I think this pretty much nails me--"Read a vampire book once and quite liked it. Watches the odd 'quirky' film as well as dramas featuring John Hannah/Bill Nighy. Has tried Greek food. Subconsciously, hopes use of word 'eclectic' will impress." (I'm all over that Greek food...)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! Well, maybe I've also provided a service - given those who can't think what to write in their bios some ideas. You could mix it up with 'mompreneur' and 'thought leader' now and again, too :)

      Delete
  25. Mind blown because yes, as "author" I'm tweeting somewhat because I have to and otherwhat because there are some really cool people on there.

    Also, now I know why the mass exodus from my "Godly" followers. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha! Yes - I don't even bother to follow them back anymore!

      Delete
  26. A laugh out loud post, Terry.Been intimidated/ caught out/ impressed by some of these - No more, no more!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, Judith, I could add more all the time - and do!!

      Delete
  27. Well, I do like wine and (but not or) chocolate ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I've always found the wine/chocolate/chick lit/etc etc ladies on Twitter to be most charming, Louise!!! I'm more of a cake a coffee girl myself (or ice cream!), but it all amounts to the same thing!! (Having said that, I can still make a good effort with the wine on occasion!)

      Delete
  28. This made me snort coffee down my nose! So funny but oh, so true. It should be required reading. Thanks Terry 😀

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Lizzie, glad to have entertained you!! x

      Delete
  29. This sent me straight back again to check out my 'two' twitter accounts. Both bios still seem pretty innocuous - although the old one does have a photo of me cross-eyed looking up to space - which is s a bit scary and cam never be altered. Still laugh out loud at Loved your 'Thought Leader' comment. Jx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Judith, even I still laugh at that!! xx

      Delete
  30. Wonderful.
    My profile is worryingly like one (or more) of those, but I'm not admitting which one(s).

    :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will admit to calling myself 'award-winning' in a tweet, once, for about an hour, then deleting it because I felt a prat.

      Delete