1. Let us know you’re on Twitter!

Include a Twitter icon or a “Follow us here” or “Hey, we’re on Twitter” type of badge on your site. Don’t make us scroll down to your footer links- give us something at the top of the page. Additionally, make sure it’s CLEAR that you’re on Twitter. Saying community, in my mind, sounds like a forum or entire social network in and of itself.

2. Talk to us!

Now, responding to followers doesn’t have to be an obligatory, “every time someone tweets our name, we have to tweet back at them” type of thing. However, if you’re tweeting ONLY as a one-sided marketing tool, you’re missing the point. If someone asks a valid question, acknowledge it. Even if you don’t have an answer, we like to know you’re listening (and really, we do appreciate it).

3. Keep us in the know!

We’re going down for updates in a couple minutes – sorry for the inconvenience, but we’ll be back up within the hour.

It tells us the service that is going down is keeping us in the loop. They want to make the service better, of course, and though it’s an inconvenience at the time, they give a warning that it’s happening or they advise their us that there’s nothing catastrophically wrong.

Now of course there are times when we want a solution. However, if there is some information that would better help us understand what’s going on, you’re making a great start.

4. Don’t spam us!

Seriously, do I even have to say this? This includes mass @ messages (consisting of only usernames with no message) and tweeting the same message to different people over and over, among a multitude of others.

5. Be human and be honest!

Let us know who’s we’re talking to, whether it’s a team or an individual. It’s really simple. We understand the difference between a company that says it cares and a company that actually does.

I want to be clear – these are the absolute bare-necessity basics and I’m only scratching the surface. But they are a few things that I’ve come to expect from my favorite brands and businesses on Twitter.

What do you expect from businesses on Twitter?