MARK SHAW, Twitter Specialist:

A lot of people ask me when they first join Twitter, they want to hook up with celebrities and have a conversation, and I think that there’s a place to follow when you get involved with celebrities.

I think the first thing to remember is that if the celebrities are doing Twitter properly, it’s not about business, so stop this idea that you can immediately contact Richard Branson or Duncan Bannatyne with your business plan. By and large they’re not interested, that’s on their website.

The way to get involved with celebrities is to firstly start following them, and to listen to what they are doing. And then they’ll be a moment in time where one of them very well may say something where you can add value to that conversation. For example, I follow Duncan Bannatyne, who uses Twitter brilliantly. Duncan talks about all sorts of things; his tailor, where he eats, shopping, where he’s going on holiday, and suddenly he started talking about the X-Factor. He started talking about one of the people he likes, and I commented on that. I got into a conversation with him. I would have never have achieved that if the first message that I said to him was “Hi Duncan, I’ve got a great idea, can I come on Dragon’s Den?”.

So my suggestion for people who really want to get involved with celebrities is be patient, start to follow them, and just wait until there’s something where they can add value, that’s not business related, and then just start talking to them. That’s how you get involved with celebrities on Twitter.

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