The Tao of Twitter [Review]

You probably know that Twitter is a powerful communication tool, but many just don’t really get how to use it. If you want to master Twitter, you need to understand the Tao of Twitter – or the way it works.

So if you’re struggling, you should be thrilled to learn that Mark Schaefer wrote this book just for you (in a cosmic sense).

Twitter is all about connections and The Tao of Twitter highlights how those connections happen. Schaefer starts off describing what the Tao looks like in action, explains the concept in-depth and then jumps right in to the business benefits of this newfound understanding.

You’ll learn the basics, of course, like how to set up your Twitter account (and profile) for maximum success and the basic Twitter lingo, etiquette and what and when to tweet. And you’ll also learn many pro tips, like how to save time, Twitter list tips, an intro to advertising, hosting Twitter chats and most importantly – how to build your influence and make connections not only on Twitter but in your business community in the real world.

Here are a couple of nuggets to whet your appetite (paraphrased):

  • When it comes to followers, you need both quality AND quantity. And he describes best practices (and some strategies) for attracting targeted followers.
  • Having separate work and personal accounts doesn’t make sense. You’re not a robot – and if you are that’s probably problem #1 you’re having with Twitter. People want valuable content, but they also want to know you’re alive. Interact. Be human. (Just make sure you and your employer are clear re who owns your Twitter if you’re not self-employed, in case you part ways!)

Probably the only part I disagree with is where Schaefer hedges a bit about Twitter not being right for everyone. It absolutely isn’t right for everyone! Some people (and businesses) just aren’t cut out to tweet. The Tao of Twitter could work for anyone, certainly, but if you hate Twitter (or any platform) forcing yourself to do it is wasted effort.

If we had a star system, I’d give this book 5 out of 5 stars because it does what it promises: demystifies Twitter using real examples as inspiration. If you’re new to Twitter or new-ish – or just struggling with making that leap from tweeting to partnering with folks on projects, you should check out this book. (FYI: He has other books out as well on blogging, engagement and ROI.)

If you’ve read any of his books, hit the comments and let us know what you think!

(Book image from