Oprah, Beyoncé, and Elon have one thing in common that makes us mere mortals burn in envy. No, it is not their celebrity status or money (although there is that too). It is their Twitter username!
If you are not one of the fortunate ones who got first dibs on the Twitter username you wanted, we hear you.
With Twitter’s active users crossing 330 million and a million or more inactive accounts, finding your ideal Twitter username is but a distant dream.
More power to you if you are in the league of @KimKardashian.
But if you vibe more with celebs who have had to settle with name variations like @JLo or @TaylorSwift13, here are 15 ways you can craft a Twitter username that you will (eventually) love. After all, this will be your identity once you go viral on Twitter.
Why Should You Have A Killer Twitter Username?
Twitter has come a long way from being used as an opinion dumpster. It is now a place to build your personal brand, speak to your ideal audience, network, keep up with what’s trending, and so much more. A good Twitter username can represent who you are and what you tweet about, all by itself. It can also help you stand out as an expert influencer in your niche. It’s the identity that ultimately garners reach and engagement for you.
There is a lot that Twitter can do for you as a mass influencer, and what better place to start than with a catchy Twitter username! Check out the infographic below:
Figure 1: Twitter users are 3x more likely to follow brands than Facebook users! Source: Bruce Clay, Inc
Whether starting from scratch or looking to revamp your existing Twitter handle, there are some ground rules you should know.
Ground Rules for Fantastic Twitter Usernames
Start with your name
Your name is as good as anything, to begin with. Check the availability of a Twitter username for the exact spelling of your name. If it is not available (true in most cases now), play a permutation combination game and try to come up with a handle that is available to pick. Try to stick to your name or brand name so that it aligns with your other social handles. It would be great if your Twitter username is similar (if not the same) to your IG username. Anything too different will confuse your followers or even send them to an account that is not yours!
Here are some combinations you can try:
- Your first and last name, eg.: @elonmusk
- Your initials, eg.: @JLo
- The first letter of your name and your last name, e.g.: @jtimberlake
Do you have a common name that is frequently taken up? Keep reading for more ideas to come up with a unique Twitter name.
Include your niche
Just as introducing yourself to someone new, the second thing to add is what you do. Place relevant keywords related to your niche (industry, brand, skill or job, etc.) such as writer, mom blogger, coach, etc. Zoom in on your purpose and create a username around it.
Take this example from @C4ETech. It is pretty apparent they tweet about tech, right?
Figure 2: A screenshot of the C4ETech Twitter handle. Source: Twitter
Get creative with puns and words
Whether it is a funny spelling of your name or a pun intended, a play on words can also be a fun way for people to remember you on Twitter. But remember not to go too overboard or offensive. Keep it short and funny, and I hope people get a laugh or two out of you.
Here is an example where Mary Poppins became the inspiration for Harry Poppins, a pet store Twitter account.
Figure 3: A screenshot of the Hairy Poppins Twitter handle. Source: Twitter
Go easy on the numerical
Many people resort to using their special numbers such as birthdays, age, anniversaries, etc, as part of their chosen username to make it unique. While this can work, keep it to a maximum of three digits. Anything more, and you risk people either forgetting your handle or perceiving you as a not-so-serious account.
Or choose a creative style like Matt Brian, the editor of The Next Web, chose for his Twitter name, @m4tt. The number four not only fits in, resembling the letter A, but it also reads a lot like mAtt.
Figure 4: A screenshot of Matt Brian’s Twitter handle. Source: Twitter
If you mean business, include a keyword
Just like Google, Twitter is also a search engine. It ranks profiles based on keywords that match search queries. If you are looking to increase followers, basic keyword volume research is the first place to start. Add the keyword as part of your Twitter username within the allowed character limit. Also, optimize other parts of your Twitter profile, such as your bio, tweets, etc. If you are a business on Twitter, this part is vital.
Here is what it will look like:
Figure 5: A screenshot of Roberta Rosenberg’s Twitter handle. Source: Twitter
Twitter username generators can help
When in doubt, go with a free tool that does all the work for you. A Twitter username generator gives suggestions based on some questions, such as your hobbies, hometown, nicknames, etc. You can either pick the one you like or blend a couple of them to create your own.
Remember the KISS
Yes, you want your Twitter username to be unique and cool, but “Keep It Short and Simple.” If you add too many similar-looking letters such as the alphabet ‘O’ and the number ‘0’, people can get confused and get it wrong too! Avoid mishaps when typing out your desired usernames.
Figure 6: A screenshot of the ReadWriteWeb Twitter handle. Source: Twitter
Limit your underscores
Or avoid them altogether. If your desired username, say @yourname, is already claimed, it may not be a good idea to use @your_name instead. Your followers (or potential followers) may accidentally link it to @yourname. Instead, be creative and try other alternatives.
Make sure the Twitter username you choose is meaningful, easy to remember, and unique!
Consistency is a must for your social handles as an influencer, so try the same for Twitter. If you already have a following on other social platforms, having the same username will pull up your Twitter profile on Google. This hugely improves your discoverability.
Your First Choice Is Taken? No Problem! Use These 15 Twitter Username Ideas
Despite all this, if you are still not happy with the Twitter usernames you came up with, here are 15 more ways you can try.
1. Hack your name
If you have a name that is harder to remember or even more common than you’d like, then use abbreviations or part of your name. If you are a namesake of Emma Watson, then you can go for the Twitter handle @EmWatson, since it is a better take on just adding initials.
2. Add “The”
Twitter handles that have “the” as a prefix appear legitimate. So go ahead and add a “the” to your name just like Mandy Moore did.
3. Use “this is” or “I am”
A great way to introduce yourself or your brand on Twitter, Seth Godin has managed to make his “under 500 words” blog a success via Twitter. His Twitter handle says @ThisIsSethsBlog. Another creative example is @iamwill (will.i.am), who happens to be lucky to have a name like that.
4. Make it “Real”
Join the leagues of @KevinHart4real (Kevin Hart) and @realDonaldTrump (Donald Trump) and add “real” before your name, literally and figuratively.
5. Make it “Official”
You can add “official” before your name if you already have a following and have a concise or nickname like Adele, @OfficialAdele.
6. Say What You Do
If your “what” is more relevant to your social profiles, adding it to your username can work. Titles like ‘coach’, ‘counselor’, etc. can be seen in use on Twitter.
Mike Leach (@Coach_Leach) Head Football Coach of Mississippi State University; Author of NY Times Best Seller, Swing Your Sword
7. Use your URL
Even though adding a “.” within the character limit is not allowed, you can spell it out as “dot” or just skip it altogether and use your domain name as your Twitter username. Apt choice if you are a team or brand already like the famous football brand FIFA, @FIFAcom (FIFA.com)
8. Use leet-speak
Similar-looking numbers and alphabets can be used interchangeably to create your name in a unique style of writing. They will still read the same to people.
Something like these: 4 for A, B for 8, Z for 2.
9. Use a phrase instead
If you share niche content, then using your USP in a phrase as a username is an option worth exploring.
Some examples on Twitter: @AdviceToWriters (Jon Winokur), @JenWritesBooks (Jennifer Donnelly)
10. Think of a synonym
If the keyword or phrase you wanted to use is already taken, look for a synonym instead. Words like buzz, chat, and says can be used as synonyms for each other. Twist-up the spelling, and you have the same word, in the case right/write, etc.
11. Add your location
Adding where you are based out of can help fans know where they can locate you.
12. Add additional letters to your name
@garyvee (Gary Vaynerchuk) and @xtina (Christina Aguilera) got it on point by just adding different letters to their name. If you don’t go overboard, you just might discover a username you like.
If giving advice is your niche, open up a conversation with your followers by adding “ask” to your Twitter username, like @AskPayPal (Ask PayPal) or @AskDrRuth (Dr. Ruth Westheimer).
14. Use Mr or Ms or Mrs or Miss
The common way of using your name in a corporate setting can be helpful if all else fails, as with @mrjakehumphrey (Jake Humphrey) and @missrogue (Tara Hunt).
15. Apply Alliteration
The repeating sounds sound great as well as get stuck in memory. Unique, right? Take lessons from @nikisnotes (Nicole D’Alonzo, 19 Minute Yoga), @rustyrockets (Russell Brand).
When you’re ready…
- Let your followers know of your new Twitter username so they can use it to @ mention you.
- You can also pin your new username notification tweet for a while, just until your followers get the hang of it.
- Don’t forget to update all other places where you have mentioned your Twitter, such as your website, social media profiles, author bios, email newsletter, etc.
Still Not Sure About A Twitter Username?
No Problem — Change It!
The great thing about Twitter is that it allows you to change your handle whenever you want, without compromising on your fan following! So you can first test the waters with your new Twitter handle and see if you like it. In case you don’t, you can always change it for an even better one. Your identity matters when you’re trying to build a community on social media.
All you need to find even more username ideas is a Twitter username generator.
BONUS! 5 Best Twitter Username Generators
Our top 5 picks for the best in the crowd are:
- NordPass with its various options to create a secure, unique, and customized Twitter handle.
- Lastpass gives instant random username suggestions based on some cool filters like choosing your own letters and easy-to-read options.
- Spin xo as the name suggests spins around words to create usernames based on the questions it asks you. It also runs a Twitter username availability check on your behalf.
- Twitter Name Generator is pretty straightforward, just like its name, and it gets the job done without much hassle.
- Masterpiece generator will practically give you endless options based on your information, such as your name, DOB, etc.
While you juggle all those numbers, symbols, and names to fit into a 15-character word limit, remember a perfect Twitter name doesn’t make you awesome; YOU DO!
But you know what can make you even more awesome? atisfyre!
We’re dedicated to making your journey as an influencer as fun and happening as your Twitter feed. Join Atisfyre, our AI based influencer marketing platform, to connect with brands and ‘fire up the chatter’ now!