Ok so I have heard this lot lately “I don’t get twitter” and yes I admit once upon a time I was on the twitter dark side too. I opened twitter many moons ago mainly to get informed. I followed news channels from around the world and a few newspapers and guess what? It got utterly boring. So I started experimenting – Twitter doesn’t have to be difficult (nor boring) but it does requite certain level of concentration to keep up with the large amounts of information coming your way whether you are ready or not.
It is not rocket science.
So here I go with a few tips for the newbie’s:
- Create your handle – meaning your twitter name (the whole @Iwanttotrythisout thing) which includes a short bio and a picture. Keep it short remember space is important as it is limited!
- The main component of Twitter is to keep it Short and Simple. Go to the point and be clear in what it is you want to say.
- If you have something to hide or simply are über conservative about what you say (or perhaps shy) you can set your account to private. In my opinion that is like going to a nudist beach and wearing a bathing suit. Twitter is about socializing with others – This is not facebook you don’t list friends, you follow people (preferably in a non-stalkerish way)
- Start following people and/or organizations, and brands that might interest you. This way each time they “tweet” something you’ll be able to read it immediately on your news feed. (Called “home” on the new Twitter format and its located at the top left hand side of the page.
- Share information. Make it interesting for others to read you – knowing at what time you shower, what type of coffee you had for breakfast and how many steps there are from the parking lot to your office might not be of much interest for other people – Sorry. Unless of course you are a celebrity.
- Don’t over-tweet. Two to five tweets an hour is considered normal.
- You don’t have to tweet 24/7. Chill you still have a life.
- Replying is easy if someone directs a tweet at you simply press the reply button – if you wish to also keep the original message in your tweet write RT (re-tweet) in front of the message you are re-twitting so people know other person wrote it.
- If you think something might be interesting to someone else you can write CC in front of the message re-tweeted.
- #FF means #FollowFridays is a way of promoting others to follow people you already follow and find interesting.
- The use of the # – it works sort of like a tag does on facebook. It allows you to find tweets easier when searching for a particular subject, topic or brand. Some brands will let you know the word of the event, for example for the Oscars using #Oscars categorized all Oscar related tweet. You can also make these ones up, there are no rules.
Imagine twitter as an informal way to communicate with people and organizations you would otherwise have no access to. Such as the early days of a chat room with added value. But please if you feel the impulse to use it as a chat room use the Direct Messages box – you can keep those private, the whole world doesn’t need to be spammed with your conversation.
Hope this helps you a little…