How do I set up an automatic direct message to thank new followers on Twitter?

Putting aside the recent SPAM attacks it has suffered, Twitter has become a very useful tool for contacting journalists as part of a technical PR campaign. It is also a good way of contacting respondents to surveys, inviting people to events and generating subscribers to newsletters.

One common question though is ‘how do I set up an automatic direct message to thank new followers on Twitter’. The answer is that you can’t – within Twitter. However, there are a number of tools you can use outside Twitter to achieve exactly this.

My preference is SocialOoomph, a tool which offers a mountain of free and paid for functions that can be applied to Twitter, Facebook, Ping.FM and most Blog platforms. Key amongst these are the automatic direct message function and the Tweet scheduler. Between them, these two tools allow you to manage a Twitter campaign almost completely automatically.

But a word of warning on direct messages; don’t be too promotional. In my own direct message, I offer new followers the chance to subscribe for free to this Blog’s newsletter. And yet even that is pushing the boundaries of what you should do. The general consensus is to thank users for the follow and maybe provide a URL where they can find out more about you.

If you limit yourself to what is considered socially acceptable, you will find that Twitter becomes a more and more useful tool as it develops into a required weapon in the day to day arsenal of our online lives.

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Richard Stone

Stone Junction is a cool technical PR agency based in Stafford. We work for all sorts of businesses, with a particular focus on technology, technical and engineering companies. We like being sent cake and biscuits by clients, journalists and prospects.

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