Twitter, the 140 character microblog we all know and love is a great tool for any business.  Here are the basics to setting one up for your business.

Head over to www.twitter.com and select “create a new account”.  Each Twitter account must be connected with a valid email account, and Twitter will send an email to confirm.

Twitter signup form

Here you can choose both your display name and your twitter account name (the @xxxx name). Both of these names are dispayed when you post.  You can change the display name, but never the account name.

There are two images you can upload for your profile, a backround image that spans the top of your twitter profile, and a smaller square image that is your profile image. The profile image is what will display along with your name and account name when you tweet.

Twitter does a great job of leading you through the steps to finish your profile.  They will prompt you to follow a several accounts based on your interests.  While you may not wish to follow any of these promoted accounts, if they do interest you simply hit “follow”.  Otherwise just keep hitting “skip”.   After you have followed or skipped these, finish setting up your profile. Twitter will ask to get access to your email contacts, to enable forwarding invitations to follow you.  You will be able to select which of the people they find for you for selective inviting.  This can be a good way to get some people following you right away.

Be sure to follow the instructions they provide to post your websites domain and put up some basic company information, such as what you do and where you are located.

Now you are ready to go.

What we recommend is that you start posting a few times a week, and keep it interestingto followers.  Don’t just post a whole lot of “press release” type info about yourself and your company, as that will soon get tiresome.  The best tweeters will tweet some info relevent to their industry which  followers can appreciate. Additionally, it is always good to get a bit personal every once in a while.  People are always be more interested in an account that tells some stories and shows some personality.  Remember the 1/3 1/3 1/3 rule:  1/3 of your posts about your business, 1/3 about your industry and 1/3 just random posts that give some color and interest. Try not to just put up some trite info though, such as “It’s luchtime”.

When you post about someone or something, check to see if they have a twitter account themselves, and use that in your post. “Thank you @leopardstudio for the info about Twitter”, rather than “Thanks Leopard Studio for the info about Twitter”. This is important, because when someone is mentioned with the @xxxx (account name),  a notification is sent to that account that it has  been mentioned. This will hopefully have an effect, resulting in a retweet to their own readers, or a posting that they appreciated the mention (favorited a tweet).  Perhaps this may interest them in following you.

Additionally, use the # symbol on twitter to help get your tweet noticed. For example, “@Ikea we love that your Swedish Meatballs will now be #vegan! #vegetarian #Ikea #meatless”.  If people are searching for tweets mentioning vegan, vegetarian, Ikea or meatless, this will help them find yours.

That’s the basics . Using Twitter and increase your online visibility.  Google, Yahoo and the other search sites all look to Twitter to establish your relevence on the net, so just having an account and using it will help actually help with your search result rankings. Additionally, Twitter accounts do show up in search results, so this is another way for people to find you!  If you’d like, you can follow me too:  I’m @leopardstudio.

It’s just a year since we’ve moved here ourselves.  So far this has been a really nice place to be, an exciting city with a great energy.  One thing we’ve noticed is a huge number of apartments being built.  Now Philadelphia Magazine has told us a good reason:  “Millennial Growth”.  According to them, since 2007, 106,000 20-34 year olds have moved here, more than any other US city.  With them, some really nice cocktail bars have been arriving.  Win win?

Apple invites your business to be on their map.

Maps, (as the apple map app is called) has been steadily increasing it’s user base.

Open Maps and you can see stores, transportation stations, buildings of note, restaurants, etc.  Register your business on their Map now.  Going forward map and location searching tools will increasingly be inter-related.

Search engines seek as much information as possible.  The information collected at sign up, such as your hours and type of business are all registered.  Placing yourself on the Map app has potential for future growth in search rankings.

In the meantime, who doesn’t want to be on the Map? After all it will help people find you if they are looking, or discover you as they look for something nearby.

Get “on the Map”..it’s easy.

Go to https://mapsconnect.apple.com, and create your listing.  Include the your business hours, select your business type, add your web address, and optional details such as a Facebook page – that’s it.

On May 15th, in our neighborhood, which is called Old City Philadelphia, we had a large night time street festival, all about food trucks and food vendors.  The city closed down 3rd St, between Market and Race, and also Arch between 2nd St and 3rd street, and at 6 pm the street was alive with food trucks, food stalls and tons of people from all over Philadelphia.  It’s called “The Night Market” and this was the first one of 2014.  There will be three more, and they are all run by The Food Trust, with sponsorship by Yards Brewing Company and Green Mountain Energy.

We got there as the trucks we setting up, and stayed around into the night to make a little video, have some great food (and amazing sorbets by AG Catering), meet some friends and have a couple beers.  It really was a perfect night for it, nice and cool, with a little breeze.  Visit the next Night Market:  June 19th at Ogontz Avenue and 72nd St.



This week I had an unusual job here in the studio.  I mastered a 4track recording made on cassette tape back onto a cassette tape.  Completely using just analog audio gear.  4track to cassetteNick from Philly Tapes Philly was in the studio with the latest of the recordings he’s doing, recording bands in his house onto old school 4tracks.  Like the ones from the 1980’s (I had one then too!).  He’s recording songs this way and releasing them at a special show at Ortliebs, here in Philadelphia.  I’ve been helping out with the project.  For the mastering, which made the tape sound much more alive and properly rendered for playback, we used some of the classic recording studio units I have here in Leopard Studio.  After all, we did start as a recording studio!  4track in, to the mixer, add some highs, cut the lows, bring out some guitars.  Then out to the Emipirical Labs “Distressor” units for some 1960’s style optical compression.  We sent that out to the Avalon 737 stereo limiter, where we made it a bit louder, and finalized the EQ (a bit more highs again), and bang, onto a cassette tape.  That gets duplicated and put out at the show this week.  That’s a fun little project!

While finishing up some late morning coffee Kate turned on the news.  What was on was a bit of a shock- there was a major fire at the Shirt Corner Store on the corner of Market & 3rd and we didn’t even know it yet!!  We live on the 4th floor of a building and our windows had a clear view of the fire.  Fortunately there was a very quick response from the fire department.  3 minutes was what I heard on the news.  We grabbed the Iphone and took some photos and videos.  We watched as the fire worked its way up the building and through the roof.  Next door the firefighters got on the roof and using chainsaws cut a hole for ventilation.  It was inspiring to see the bravery of the firefighters!

Sometimes it’s nice to get out of your other environment and go do some work at a coworking space.  Coworking spaces are gaining popularity as with today’s world there are a whole lot of us freelance/small business people out working now that sometimes crave a little group interaction and some community.

I have been out to Philadelphia’s Indy Hall more than a few times, and working there has been really nice.  I’m not sure if all coworking spaces are as welcoming and helpful in putting like minded people together, but this place is nothing if not helpful to it’s members.  Coders, artists, writers, poets, musicians, entrepreneurs, etc., they are all here.

A real effort is made to support other members, and introduce likeminded people.  It’s real supportive.  Filled with interesting people.  If you need a place to work from, give them a shot.