Choosing An Appropriate Twitter Name

Twitter name

Choosing your Twitter name (@username) is one of the first big choices you’ll need to make relating to branding your business well on Twitter. Choices such as your username, profile information, etc., all have the power to create a dynamic Twitter presence that makes the impact you wish to make with respect to establishing your brand’s reputation.  (Alternatively, if you aren’t intentional with your username and profile, they can hurt your brand’s reputation)

From a personal branding standpoint, one of the smartest choices is simply to use your real name – your real first and last name as your Twitter username. One of the reasons this is so effective is because on Twitter, people prefer to connect with real people. If you brand your Twitter account with your brand name, it is much more difficult to establish yourself as a real, warm, authentic person. It’s possible, it’s just more difficult. This is also important to consider if you have multiple people within your company Tweeting on behalf of your brand. It’s possible, however, that a username with your first and last name is already taken as a Twitter username. If this is the case, try using a different variation of your name. Or add your middle initial or something related to your particular business niche.

Some people choose to capitalize on the search engine optimization (SEO) value of a Twitter username by including a keyword related to their product or service within their Twitter username.

As an additional note, it’s not recommended to use only your last name as a Twitter handle, as this makes you appear impersonal to other Twitter users, and you may find that your list of followers isn’t growing as fast as you might like. 

It’s also not recommended to use a Twitter username that’s particularly cute or risqué (or inappropriate in any other way). This is a sure way to not be taken seriously as a business person. Just think – your Twitter account and Tweets are going to be the first impression that many people have of your business. You’ll want to make sure that your first impression says exactly what you want it to say.  Business related Tweets coming from @cutiepie4 or @MightyDucksFan might not be taken as seriously as you want them to be.<

No matter how you end up choosing your Twitter username, the simple truth is this:  with a little creativity, it’s still quite possible to create a great username that suits the personality of your brand. 

How about you? What are some of your favorite tips when selecting a username?

22 Comments

  1. Yes! The cutsie handles used for business or anything that is unrelated confuses me. As do those that have a few words that merge together and you have a hard time understanding what they mean. I like using a brand name, but if you are your own brand, absolutely use your name as you can carry it with you later no matter what your goal for using Twitter.

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    • Precisely! Very well said.

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  2. Great post Edmund! funny some of those twitter handles to be sure! there are days when I would sign off as @havinganotherbadhairday! or @don’taskmynametoday! hahaha!! great points! P

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    • Thanks Patricia!

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  3. Very good tips. Something simple but yet SO important.

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    • Thanks Mike!

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  4. I agree that using your name is the best – I didn't do that and now I regret not using my name for my twitter account.

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  5. I used to have a handle with my old business and I ended up starting over using my name. Best thing I ever did. Great tips!

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    • Good for you Heather!

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  6. A great read Edmund and so appropriate in that this has been a hot topic in our DIYSocial group. Thanks so much for putting this out there and explaining the points behind it. Thanks!

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    • Welcome! 

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  7. I wish I had seen this before I used my business name! Makes complete sense, Edmund; thanks for sharing. 

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    • You're welcome my friend!

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  8. I always wanted to use my own name on Twitter, but like so many others, my name is taken… unfortunately by someone has 1 tweet and hasn't tweeted since I don't know when. Twitter should release those names, but that's a whole other subject.

    Using @ShelleyWebbRN worked for my one niche because RNs are respected when speaking on health care issues. But for social media, I had nothing. So I settled for @ShelleyWebbCSO. I don't even have a clue what the CSO means. 🙂
     

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    • I thought CSO is an acronym =)

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  9. I chose my business name over my personal name because I was originally told that's what I needed for business visablilty and for building my brand.

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  10. Years ago, I used to be @heatherthemkgal or maybe it was even @heatherthemarykaygal but guess what?  Mary Kay corporate gave me a hand slap— I hadn't realized that I was breaking a trademark rule!  Mary Kay consultants can't use MK or Mary Kay in their social media handles.  So I became @heatheramyprice which works out well for me since Mary Kay is no longer my only business and I moved my blogging to http://heatheramyprice.com &nbsp; Good tips!

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    • Glad that @heatheramyprice works for you. =)

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  11. Great info! Your Twitter name will most likely be the first impression people get of you. It makes sense to choose wisely 😉 

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    • Yep! 100% agree with you Daveda! =)

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  12. I chose to use my business name (or at least as close to it as I could get), but on reflection I think I would have taken my own name assuming it was available. I rebranded and renamed my business a couple of years ago and that meant changing my Twitter name too. You start to lose people if they don't recognise you, so for that reason I think your own name is best.

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    • Precisely! I’m with you on that Clive.

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