My Twitter Story: How Tweeting Landed Me a Gig

Twitter is a lot of nonsense, right? A few years ago I would have said yes. I’ve since learned that Twitter has a reason for being, one that has landed me at least one gig and has helped me to connect with people I might otherwise never had met.

I think there are a lot of Twitter users who have had similar experiences to mine.

I wrote the title to this article last March, just days after landing the gig. I put off writing it until now as I’ve been super busy with various projects including the one that brought in new business for me. My last article posted here was two months ago — never before have I gone so long between posts ever since launching this site nearly six years ago.

Twitter Gig

The gig that I got lasted just over four months, shorter than what I had expected. Yet, it was a job that came my way because the woman who hired me saw my automotive tweets via @theautowriter, one of several Twitter handles I manage. This account is linked to my main website at autotrends.org, my flagship car site that showcases my work.

Following being contacted for the gig, I submitted the required paperwork and began to write. I averaged two articles per week at $50 per article. The rate seems low, but the articles took me about one hour to write. When all was said and done, I pulled in $1,700 all because of someone who found my tweets.

More Contacts

I’ve also been found by other people in the automotive industry who were also tracking my tweets. Although those connections haven’t yielded new work, each one has raised my visibility. Importantly, at client expense, I’ve been flown to Detroit, San Francisco and to Ohio for automotive related events.

Those events have allowed me to test drive vehicles or see new products before these hit the market. Moreover, I made additional connections with other journalists including one that I believe will eventually yield fresh work. Again, this is all because of Twitter.

Social Media

These days, I’ve largely abandoned all of my other social media platforms including my long-term favorite, StumbleUpon. SU is still decent, but I need to keep my irons in fires that yield solid results. Sure, a surge of traffic to my websites is always welcome, but more important is the work that I get from my contacts, particularly through tweeting.

LinkedIn is beneficial to me for business, Facebook is ideal for family contacts, but nothing else out there seems to be worth my while.

That’s okay, because when it comes to tweeting, the proof is in the work I’ve gotten, the trips I’ve taken and the new contacts I’ve made.

Does Twitter rock? It certainly does in my world!

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Amusing Myself With Twitter

I had to check my blog archives to see where I’d mentioned Twitter previously and came up with just two occurrences. The first mention was in June 2007; the second one in December 2008.

TwitterThat first occurrence was within an article I titled, How I Found You Online, where I marveled at the different ways I discovered people via the internet. At that time, I relied a lot more on forums such as Digital Point and Sitepoint as well as social media sites including BUMPzee, MyBlogLog and BlogCatalog to connect with people. Back then, I was a new user on StumbleUpon and was still stopping in on MySpace on occasion.

But it was my last comment that brought a smile to my face, particularly my comment about Twitter:

I plan on joining LinkedIn eventually, but I think I’ll sit Twitter out.

Yes, it just took me just seven words to explain that I wasn’t planning on using Twitter, likely for the reason that I saw no point in using it.  After all, Twitter was only a silly way for people to send one liners to each other all day, right? Who had the time for such nonsense?

Well, things certainly do change in the world of social media as I am basically forum free these days, choosing to meet up with people through their respective blogs and key social media sites. Yes, I even connect with a handful of people through email, but if you’re looking to IM me, that won’t happen — but feel free to send me a tweet!

It must have been an article I read, such as Mihaela Lica’s very first article on Sitepoint titled, “Twitter’s Little Known SEO Value,” that piqued my interest in Twitter. I’ve been following “Michi’s” writings for several years now and her candid explanation of Twitter caused me to revisit the site, digging a bit deeper to see what it is all about.

I joined Twitter long ago, have posted a bunch of links in the in the interim, but my network wasn’t much to brag about. But, this past week I invited a number of people to connect with me via Twitter, tripling my contacts and putting some life in my exchanges with other members. That move brought in a number of high end users, professional tweeters who add interesting stuff and make Twitter worthwhile.

Sure, there are some people who seem to be having conversations with nobody but themselves, but I’ve also come across a handful of really good articles that I probably wouldn’t have found had I not started using Twitter. In those cases I’ve read the article, posted a comment and, in a few situations, shared that information with someone else.

Mihaela’s article is a good read, making no silly promises that Twitter will do something that it won’t. But it was her last statement that I found most interesting (and true) — If you can make people come to your site via Twitter, then this is an SEO advantage you cannot afford to miss. – something I am taking into consideration as I tweet may around the site.

Oh, by the way, if you want to follow me on Twitter please click on the little tweety bird and you’ll be brought to my profile page for a connection.