I learned a hell of a lot when doing my Madness project, some great tips from here and some I thought of myself. I hope they'll be useful
1. I always start a new colour with the looping method, it makes the back much neater.
2. Don't cut your strands too long as the thread will become twisted and more prone to knotting. I always cut a metre and fold it in half for the looping method.
3. Think ahead. Whenever I've got a spare 5 minutes, I'll look at the chart and work out how I'm going to stitch the next few colours.
4. I count with a marker needle from the end of my last stitch to the start of the next and leave the marker needle in that hole (assuming they're a few stitches away). I find this makes it easier to 'bury' the thread under previous stitches and come back up in the right place.
5. I check my chart after every 10 or so stitches to make sure I'm in the right place. It's much easier to correct mistakes early than later.
5. I highlight the stitches I'm about to do and study it for a minute to work out the best path. I then highlight with a different colour to mark off completed stitches.
6. Cut the excess thread very close to the fabric, makes it nice and neat.
7. I didn't take my hoop off every night but only when I needed to move it. That night, I would put my work on a hard surface and put heavy books on top of it to get rid of the hoop marks.
8. I sometimes found that the screw on the hoop caught on the fabric so I cut a bit of kitchen roll, folded it a few times and wrapped it round the screw and caught it in the frame to stop it catching.
9. I always buried thread from carried stitches on the back without exception, but obviously that's not always possible if you have unstitched areas.
These are ones that spring to mind. I hope I'm not teaching anyone to suck eggs. I think the most important thing is to find what works best for you and enjoy it.