Twitter Basics – Creating your Optimized Twitter Profile

When you start using Twitter as part of your social media marketing plan, it’s important to create an optimized Twitter profile.


Your Twitter account represents your brand, from the fundamentals such as colours, background image, and profile description, to the way you conduct yourself in conversations, who you follow, and how you express yourself in your tweets.


Step 1: Choosing your Username and Real Name

The first thing to do is go to Twitter and register.

And that’s where some confusion begins. Should you use your name or your company name?


  • also known as your Twitter handle (Mine is @AngeliqueDuff)
  • can contain up to 15 characters
  • is unique to you
  • is used to log in
  • is used in @replies and direct messages
  • appears in your profile URL

My username is AngeliqueDuff.

My profile URL is (which I can add to my business card or email signature so people can click on the link and connect with me.)


Your Name:

  • a personal identifier, also called Real Name – even though right within Twitter’s help section they state that it can be a business name or real name)
  • displayed on your profile page
  • easy to change



Especially if you are a company where you are an integral part of your business and vital to your brand (as is often the case with service providers) then I would recommend you use your name as your Username if it fits the 15 character limit. Your company might change names, but you will always have the same name.


Another reason is that people do business with people, so your name is almost more important than your business name.



Step 2: Customize your Twitter account.



Twitter profile header and bio example via Twitter help

Example of a Twitter profile header and bio – from



Your Twitter Profile “must haves” are:

  • A profile picture (also known as an avatar). There is nothing worse than the dreaded “egghead”. If you are using Twitter in any way for business, than use a professional photo of you – remember that you are representing your brand. Don’t use your logo – as in Step 1, people do business with people.


  • Background image. You can choose one of the Twitter designs, but for business purposes you can really show your personality, as well as keep consistent branding across social networks and give some more information about your business by creating a customized background. Ideal size is 1200 pixels tall x 1800 pixels wide. You can find free Twitter backgrounds here, including “business” themes.


  • Profile header image. Conveniently shaped like a business card and adding more “storytelling” elements and greater use of images overall since the Twitter format changed in fall 2012. It serves as a background for your Twitter bio. Use an image that represents your business, or be creative.
    • 1252 x 626 pixels, max 5 Mb file size
    • Twitter adds a default grey shading (gradient) to the lower half of the header, for better text readability
    • Header text is white – there are no other options.
    • If you are trying for a creative header image that incorporates your profile image (avatar) into the header design, test it out on other devices. The size and alignment are not the same for desktop and mobile devices.

  • Bio. Describes who you are and what you do. This part is indexed in a search, so remember to use industry keywords, but also add some personality. Add your website or other pertinent info – use http:// to make it at clickable link.


Simply by following these steps and customizing your Twitter account, you will miles ahead of other business who never fully complete their Twitter profile.



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