or, How I Use Micro.blog

To all new-comers from Twitter, welcome to Micro.blog!

No doubt you’ve received the welcome message from Jean with links on how Micro.blog is different from Twitter, but you’re probably still wondering how to get the most out of Micro.blog. And while I’m not claiming to have all the answers, I’ve put together a few tips for how I get value from writing here.

First, the thing that took me a while to appreciate is that Micro.blog’s not so much a social media platform, at least not in the traditional sense. I mean, it certainly can be described as one, and if your goal is to connect with others online, it works just as well as any other. But in essence, it’s closer to a blogging platform, albeit one with social aspects tied to it. When you write a post, not only would it appear in the timeline of those that follow you, it will also appear on your own blog. So an option before you is to lean into this. Treat your blog as your own space on the web. Get a domain name and share it with others. Style your blog as much or as little as you want. Take a look at the plugins to see what you can add to your site. You don’t have to do this right away, but it’s well worth considering if you hope to get the most out of writing here.

Second, write naturally. You’re not feeding an algorithm here. There’s nothing like trending topics or recommendations that takes what you write and throws it around the network. Instead, you’ll get something better: real humans reading and replying to your post. So write for humans. If a post needs to be longer than 280 characters, then it can be: no need for threads here. Also, adding hashes in front of words does nothing other than make what you write harder for others to read.

Finally, write for yourself. The cheap endorphin rush you use to get from likes and retweets will never come, so you’ll need another way to get pleasure from writing here. What works for me is to write for myself. If I write something, I do so with the expectation that no-one else will see it. Of course, you’re writing on the open web so others can certainly see it: try not to be too much of a jerk. But even if no-one else does, as long as I get something out of what I write, that’s all I ever need.

Of course, how and why you use Micro.blog is ultimately up to you. After all, you are the one paying $5.00 to use the service (and yes, in this case, you are the customer here, not the product). So make sure you use it in a way that works for you. And it may take a while before you find the utility you’re looking for. I’d advise patience here. You will not find the short-term rush you’ll get from Twitter. Before you is a slower path. But it’s one that can lead you towards a much better and fulfilling experience of writing online.

Happy blogging.