Choosing Your Twitter Handle

By Twitter

naming-babyI’ve read differing opinions on the subject of selecting your Twitter handle.  Some people believe that you should use your own personal name as a handle.  Given the fact that I have one of the most generic names on the planet, I don’t know how beneficial it is to me.  I do have a twitter account @DeborahLSmith but I find myself Tweeting more from my very first account @JerseyBites, which was started to promote my bood blog.  As JerseyBites, I feel much more free to show my personality because it’s a fun name, fun topic and I believe people find it much easier to remember than my personal handle.

When consulting clients, I actually put a lot of thought into my recommendations for handles.  What I tell clients is very dependent on their business and the goals we establish.   When consulting an author or musician or someone else who is known by their name, it makes perfect sense to go in that direction.  Sometimes, I like using the first name with a descriptor, such as @JourneywithJudy, a recent client and travel agent.  My goal for Judy is to brand her first, not her company.  I want people to know what she does at a glance and be able to remember her.  The same is true for another client, Kacy, from Connelly Campion & Wright insurance who goes by @NJInsuranceGirl.  Since Kacy serves only New Jersey, I wanted her to be able to quickly connect with other New Jerseyans.  I also wanted everyone to know she is in insurance, of course, and that she’s a female since we use her Logo as her Avatar.

I really encourage Twitter users to think carefully about the handle they choose.  What does a handle that looks like @barbara931 do for you?  (other than make people think you are a spam bot.)  Run a search on Twitter to view other Twitter handles in your industry.   If you’d like to include a keyword relevant to your industry like Travel or Nurse or Realtor, use the “Find People” search tool and search under those keywords.  You will see a list of all the people who are using those keywords and it will give you ideas on how you might use them.  I realize if you don’t have a Twitter account, you can’t use this search tool, so sign up for a Twitter account and use whatever temporary handle you want to.  You can change your handle in the settings section when you’re ready.

If you’d like some creative ideas for your future handle, feel free to email me at info@DeborahLSmith.com or leave a comment below.