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Surviving Twitter as an Early Stage Creator in 2023.

And why this is actually the best time to be on Twitter for New Creators.

Note: This article is a repost from a Substack article that I created in April 2023. The advice is still relevant, although some things might be weighted more than others.

Skip to the Advice.

So you’ve spent the last 3-6 months building an audience.

You made it over 100. Maybe you made it to the mythical 1000 followers where you can (supposedly) sell to your audience.

And now – Twitter is going to shit.

  • You have 1000 followers, but your posts are only getting like 100 views.
  • You’re getting shadow-banned every two days and don’t understand why.
  • You’re engaging all the time, but you aren’t seeing the growth you were promised.

It’s easy to just throw in the towel and move to LinkedIn, Instagram, or Tiktok.

But you’ll be missing a huge opportunity.

Let me explain.

WTF is Happening on Twitter?

High-value creators, coaches, and service providers are about to win. Here’s why.

With the release of that algorithm, we can see that Twitter is optimizing for:

  1. Less bots.
  2. More time on the Platform per user.
  3. More diversity in media types on platform.

That either means you must create either (a) hyper viral or (b) excessive value content to grow on Twitter. And (b) favors high-value creators, coaches, and service providers.

We’ll dive into why this is true in a future issue. For now I want to make sure you understand the forces at play so you can hack them to your advantage.

In the meantime – understand this. You are currently caught in the middle of the transformation of a Social Media platform in real time.

To those sitting within the creator community, this transformation seems like chaos just for the sake of it.

But, we’re all aspiring business people here right? So let’s put on our business hats for a moment to gain perspective on what’s happening.

Elon Musk must make Twitter into a profitable business.

Even if that means that he takes a hit in users, overall revenue, and overall valuation in the short term.

So, he and the team at Twitter are determining the knobs and levers to pull to make that happen. At the moment, there are five primary levers they are choosing to pull:

  1. Adjusting the Algorithm.
  2. Forcing Professional Creators to Pay for Twitter Blue.
  3. Forcing Third Party tools to pay for access to Twitter APIs.
  4. Becoming more stringent on policing bots and spammy content.
  5. Changing the logo to Doge (highest impact obvi).

It’s not that Elon hates you (maybe he does, idk, billionaires are a wild bunch). It’s that Twitter must adjust its business model to survive. Unfortunately, every one of these levers has a direct impact for Creators who are using this platform.


  1. Your third-party tools are dying.
  2. Your old content and growth strategies don’t apply.
  3. Your scaled outreach makes you look like a bot and gets you shadowbanned.

And that means the you need to adjust to stay in the game. Immediately.

But before we talk about those adjustments, why should you even care about playing the game anymore?

It’s The Perfect Time to be on Twitter as a Creator

Let’s start with the facts that you already know.

  • Twitter has 450 million monthly active users.
  • Twitter has 237.8 million daily active users.

Just grabbing 1% of that audience would give you over 400,000 potential customers. All in one spot.

I can hear you now:

“Yeah, but not for long. Twitter’s a dying platform. They’re cutting off third party tools, charging for the API, and making you get Twitter Blue just to be seen! Everyone is going to leave.”

And this is where you make the mistake that someone else is going to capitalize on.

Consumers aren’t going to leave. Most of them post once every quarter. They couldn’t care less about how content is making its way to their Feed. As long as enjoyable content keeps showing up, so will they.

Creators are going to leave.

Read that again.

Your competition is going to get fed up with all the changes. They will be the ones to leave.

And you, my friend, are going to soak up their audience. Because you’re adaptable. You’re smart. And you’re in this to actually build a real business that offers value to people.

In investing terms: you’re about to buy the dip. And just like investing – it’s critical that you understand where to put your resources to get the biggest return for your efforts.

Your Twitter Strategy Must Change.

Before we hop in: Keep in mind that this advice applies to accounts <6 months old OR with less than 5k followers.

Many large accounts will look at this list and say that it isn’t an effective approach. But they are on a different branch of the algorithm, and the rules that apply to you do not apply to large Twitter Accounts.

(1) Buy Twitter Blue

Elon Musk @elonmusk

Starting April 15th, only verified accounts will be eligible to be in For You recommendations. The is the only realistic way to address advanced AI bot swarms taking over. It is otherwise a hopeless losing battle. Voting in polls will require verification for same reason.11:54 PM ∙ Mar 27, 2023211,741Likes23,519Retweets

The algorithm already favors Twitter Blue users. On April 15th, Blue will move from a booster to a necessity. Your content will never appear in the section that 90% of Twitter users spend their time.

That’s a big problem.

Get Twitter Blue immediately.

Pro-tip: You must not alter anything about your profile for 3 days in order to apply. So if you’re using a bomb-ass tool like Birdy to test profiles, you’ll want to turn that off.

(2) Create Content People Want to Reply To.

Outside of Twitter Blue, this is the most important adjustment that you need to make immediately.

Steven Tey @steventey

6. To put these feedback loops in perspective: A user clicking on your tweet staying there for >2 min is weighted 22x more than them just liking your tweet If they click into your profile through your tweet & likes/replies to a tweet? 24x more than a like. If they reply to… PM ∙ Mar 31, 20232,517Likes681Retweets

Take a look at the compounding impact of engagement. The game is no longer about likes or retweets. The winning strategy has moved towards content that is guaranteed to get replies from your audience.

That is why you are seeing high growth from accounts who are creating giveaways like this:

Ryan Dietrich @WriteToDefy

I’ve been using LinkedIn’s Learning platform (FREE) for two years. 15,000+ courses. You usually need a premium membership… But, I found a 100% legit workaround. RT this tweet & comment “Learn” And I’ll send you the short guide. (Must be following so I can DM you)

LL Guide

11:57 AM ∙ Mar 29, 2023443Likes528Retweets

Ryan doubled his followers almost overnight by:

  1. Creating something of real value that people actually want
  2. Making the gateway to that value (a) following him and (b) replying to his Tweet.

Every reply to the tweet boosted the tweet even more. The same way that Retweets used to do.

Now – you don’t have to do a giveaway every week. And you actually shouldn’t. It will kill people’s trust in your brand.

The giveaway is just one example of content that forces engagement.

Subscribe to this newsletter, I’ll be diving into how to create content that your audience can’t help but reply to.


(3) Add Images and Video to Tweets.

Steven Tey @steventey

10. In the current light ranking model (Earlybird), tweets with images & videos seem to get a nice 2x boost →… However, this is an old model that Twitter is planning to rebuild completely, so things might change →


Images and Media give a 2x boost to tweets. Start working them into your content. It’s not just about this boost. Because there’s a second nugget here:

See that comment about staying on your tweet for two minutes? There’s a few ways to do that:

  1. Write a really long ass post (using Twitter Blue, this is single tweets not threads) and hope people stick with the whole thing.
  2. Create a video that people want to watch so that they will stay engaged with your single tweet for longer.

You can hack the algorithm for a 44x increase in reach (2x for video X 22x for 2 minute stay time) with a great tweet hook that is paired with an engaging 2 minute video.

(4) Balance your Follower to Following Ratio

Steven Tey @steventey

1. Your following-to-follower ratio matters. Twitter’s “Tweepcred” PageRank algorithm reduces the page rank of users who have a low number of followers but a high number of followings. Source ↓ dub.shHow the Twitter Algorithm works in 2023On March 31, 2023, Twitter open-sourced their algorithm. Here are some of my takeaways about how their algorithm works after diving into their codebase.7:57 PM ∙ Mar 31, 20231,209Likes282Retweets

This hard to do if you just started on Twitter. You have to take the hit early in order to get your Tweets seen at all.

But. Have 200 followers but 1200 people that you follow? It’s impacting your reach. Twitter thinks you are a content consumer, not an influential creator. And so they treat you that way when deciding what content to push forward.

If you want to steady consume content:

  1. Create Twitter Lists
  2. Make an alternative Account.

But for your business account – keep this shit in check.

(5) Stop Making Threads

I know.

You’re supposed to make two threads a week to prove your authority or whatever. But there’s two huge downsides to threads on Twitter these days:

  1. They take a ton of time to write.
  2. Changes to Twitter’s User Interface in January made threads difficult to navigate for consumers.

This means that you’re putting in a ton of work for content that simply will not be seen.

(btw, they did this so that you have to upgrade to Twitter blue to produce long-form content on Twitter)

Don’t take my word for it.

Remember Ryan who doubled his following? Check out his thread describing how he did it.

Of the 3800 people who say his first tweet, less than 10% made it to the next tweet. The content is buried.

Instead of spending hours upon hours writing threads – use the Twitter Blue Long-Form tweet to build your authority.

  1. It will keep people on a single tweet longer.
  2. It will ensure that your content is actually easily visible.

That being said – you don’t want a novel here. Long-form is still new and people need to adjust to it in their feed.

You’ll need to experiment here on what works. Feel free to e-mail me back if you have found something helpful here so I can share with my audience.

And Above All.

Remain flexible. This isn’t the end of the change.

If you feel that this has been extreme, buckle up. The changes are going to continue to come quick and fierce.

Most people will quit Twitter with the chaos. I already posted four people considering it themselves.

If you can lock yourself in and go with the flow, you’re already ahead of 90% of other creators.

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