The 10 Tweets That I Leave On The Cutting Room Floor

My recent blog post on The Top 50 Tweets that Businesses Should Be Doing was quite the hit. Let’s go the other direction – what 10 tweets should businesses avoid making?

1.) Famous quotes – I say forget these – I don’t care what Frederick Douglas said. Just my personal opinion here. When I see someone’s Twitter page and it’s ten quotes in a row from Zig Ziglar and Tony Robbins and yadda yadda, I throw up on myself.  If all you have to say is what other people once said…… I know tweeting famous or inspiring quotes can generate lots of retweets, and that’s a good thing – I just can’t seem to care. There are so many other ways to generate retweets that actually mean something. I still love you more than bacon if you’re a quote tweeter. OK, rant over! I expect some blowback on this, but as Humphrey Bogart once said, “Frankly my dear…..”

2.) Politics – let people get to know you, but not that much. Politics are just too divisive – you may be the nicest person in the world, but people have a hard time getting past political affiliations (if they don’t like your choice). I don’t know why it has to get so ugly, but it does. The only time it’s OK as a business to tweet politics is if it’s your job to piss off liberals or conservatives.

3.) As I mention here, you probably shouldn’t curse too much, call people names, engage in even light racism, solicit sexual partners, fence stolen goods, or talk about how your farts smell.

4.) Pictures of your kids – go any way you want on this – I generally avoid it. And not because I’m paranoid….. I just don’t do it.  My tummy just tells me it’s not right for me. Yes, I have pics of my kids on my Facebook page, but I don’t tweet them.

5.) Anything about not paying for whiter teeth. Seriously.  As Chris Brogan would say, “Don’t be that guy!

6.) Showing disrespect and contempt for a competitor – why bother?  Just kick their ass at business and be done with them.

7.) No settling scores on Twitter. I had a t-shirt model that stiffed me for three tees. I never called her out in public. I wanted to, but didn’t. Man, I was dying to sick the crüe on her (that being my Twitter following).  It’s three tees – I just let it go.

8.) The browbeating “why did you unfollow me” Tweet. “Hey you unfollowed me, WTF?” It’s a free country, they can unfollow you if they want. I’ve had people accidentally unfollow me. I’ve had people accidentally block me. I’ve had people purposely block me.  It happens.  Twitter is HUGE – there are millions of other people waiting to connect with you. Just move on.  (Full disclosure of hypocrisy: I experiment in this area. If it’s someone that looks nice, or someone that I would not have expected to unfollow me, I will sometimes find a tweet of theirs and respond, “Oh man, I got kicked to the curb. LOL.” It turns out that sometimes people accidentally unfollow others.)

9.) Hey @so-and-so, I unfollowed you because….. There is no need for this. If you absolutely have to express yourself to the person you unfollowed, send them a direct message.  It will be hilarious, because they won’t be able to DM you back! (you cannot DM those that aren’t following you).

10.) The response tweet that expresses confusion at a tweet of yours, like “who are you and what are you responding to?” This happens to me all the time, it drives me a little nuts, and it’s happening for two reasons, I think – let me explain with pictures.

A guy asks for assistance:

A few hours later, I provide the assistance he requested, and I let him know via this tweet:

He is confused as to what my “done!” tweet means:

Expressing such confusion is avoidable. All you have to do is drill backwards from my tweet to see what it was I was responding to.  See below:

When @yogy05 goes to look at his “@” replies, he will see the tweet you see above. All he has to do is click on “in reply to yogy05″ to go back to his original tweet – the one I was responding to. This will tell him what was “done.”  I think some people don’t realize that you can do this, or is it possible that one doesn’t have the ability to drill backwards when using certain smartphone Twitter clients?  Not sure, but it sometimes makes for disjointed and awkward conversations.

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  • TheTrendaholic

    Sadly, I actually fell into #5 territory but with some criticism and conscious I decided to just back off, lol. But don't get me wrong I'm still not opposed to tweet ads as long as it's relevant to what you cover or talk about and you must use it moderately not overwhelmingly (1 or 2 every now and then shouldn't hurt). Lastly, #10 is probably one of the most annoying things to me about people on Twitter, I mean seriously grow a brain.

  • Chris Reimer

    I have to say, ads are not a 100% turnoff for me. It's just when they get repetitive – the “whiter teeth” thing just spread across Twitter like crazy.

    I get DMs about joining Twables, because it helps me find people on Facebook. I've received this DM over 100 times. I like to DM them back and ask “What do you like most about Twables?” One person has answered me. All the rest ignored me.

  • Jack

    This list might work for you, but I would much rather see a funny quote when I am having a bad day. I really don't care where you are every 15 minutes or what foursquare location you are in. Information is valuable. help is valuable. Where you are having coffee might work for your local twitter community but seems of little value is I am not in St. Louis. What you don't like and what someone else does not like are merely opinion. One man's junk is another mans treasure.

  • Chris Reimer

    Hey, you ended that blog comment with a quote – no fair!

    I definitely hear you, Jack – we should not try to be all things for all people, and tweeting styles will always vary. I appreciate your take on this.

  • forsalebyownerhomes

    Oh, thank you, thank you for mentioning #7. While I adore approximately 97% of my favorite tweeter's tweets, the remaining 3% bash people who've stolen his blog content. It stinks, I know, but when you have popular and relevant content, people are going to try and snag it! I always cringe at these tweets, so uncomfortable in my desk chair, 3000 miles away and still part of the awkward “Why'd you still my content, man!?!?” conversation… Good post.

  • Chris Reimer

    Thanks for visiting my blog! It's funny…. as long as he's getting mentioned by the retweeters or the reposters, then the “stealing” of his content is actually a good thing!

  • Russ Henneberry

    I have been fired up by something I saw on Twitter a few different times and wanted to throw something out there — but one rule I try to follow — don't do anything when you are super emotional — angry, jealous, excited, etc

    • Greg

      This is a good one Russ, I get mad at my TV provider or someone like that, and I immediately want to blast them publicly. I used to let it fly, but I try to reign it in now as best I can. A diplomatic criticism is one thing, but angry tweets don’t do anyone any good.

  • forrestbivens

    (written with a sly grin…) Ahem…

    “Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn”…from the 1939 epic Gone With The Wind, said in a moment of disgust by Rhett Butler (Clark Gable) to Scarlett O'Hara (Vivian Leigh).

    So shoot me, I'm a classic movie buff(oon?) ;)

    Good post BTW Chris.

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  • Investswfl

    Great post…I’m right there with you!

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