It may only be 140 characters, but you’d be surprised how helpful your Twitter bio can be in helping to define your brand as a comedian.
Just like with everything you do online, the secret to a successful Twitter bio is to be as specific as possible in describing yourself and what you do. The more to write, speak, and talk about yourself and your comedy in specifics (and the less you do so in generic terms), the easier it will be for you to establish your personal brand.
Unfortunately, the vast majority of comedians don’t follow this advice and that’s why 90% of comedians’ Twitter bios read like they could be describing just about anybody as opposed to properly representing that individual comedian’s brand and viewpoint.
This may seem like a bit of an abstract concept, so here’s a few examples of what I mean for you to consider.
Go take a quick look at your Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube bios and ask yourself this question: Is what you’ve written to describe yourself applicable to anybody else in the world but you? Could your bio also be used to describe thousands of other comedians out there? If so, it’s way too generic.
For example, here’s three random comedians’ Twitter bios that I just read:
“I write jokes.”
“Actress. Stand up comedienne. Extraordinaire.”
“I think I’m funny. You may not.”
It doesn’t matter whose bios these are, because they could be just about anybody’s – and that’s the problem. If you’re describing yourself in generic terms like this, you’re not doing anything to separate yourself from the rest of the comedians in the world, which is ultimately what building a brand is all about.
By positioning yourself in generic terms, you’re essentially sending a message to would-be followers that there’s no reason why they should care about you and what you have to say any more than they care about every other random comedian out there. Needless to say, that’s not the kind of message you want to send.
By comparison, here’s some examples of Twitter bios that include more specifics about the person’s interests, background, or viewpoint:
Sean O’Connor: “I wrote for the Sports Show with Norm MacDonald and now I’m just a stand up comic who really likes the Smiths. http://teamcoco.com/video/sean-oconnor-dirty-talk“
Sean’s Twitter bio establishes his credibility (he’s written for Norm MacDonald and performed on Conan) and gives me a sense of who he is by sharing his interest in the Smiths. If I don’t care about sports and don’t like Smiths fans, then I may instantly know Sean’s not for me. But…if I do like sports and The Smiths, I’m significantly more interested in following Sean and learning more about him than I would be if his bio just said something like “I tell jokes.”
Ngaio Bealum: “I am a comedian, magazine publisher, juggler, musician, parent, activist, Sacramentan, and a great cook. I also like hard beats and soft drugs http://www.facebook.com/ngaio420#!/pages/Ngaio-Bealum/128933910481488“
Ngaio’s Twitter bio showcases his eclectic interests, location, and includes a link to his Facebook page if I’m curious to learn more about him. Again, in 140 characters he delivers enough valuable (and specific) information about himself for potential followers to figure out whether or not he’s somebody they’d be interested in.
And in case you’re wondering, here’s my personal Twitter bio:
Josh Spector: “I write, produce, market, create, and share things. Some are funny, some are smart, some are neither. http://www.joshspector.com“
As with all things in the social media world, there’s no real “rules” when it comes to writing your Twitter bio. You’re free to do with it what you please, but if you want people to notice you and separate yourself from the crowd, try to come up with something that’s going to uniquely represent you and your comedy. It will help you in the long run.