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Thursday, November 10, 2011, how do you *do* twitter? Advice & thoughts on getting started with twitter

Question of the day:, how do you *do* twitter? It seems different than fb. Any words of wisdom?

Twitter is different from facebook for me.Twitter is a very dynamic sharing, learning, and network tool. Facebook can be that, too, but it's more a mashup and convulated (imho).

So how do I do it?
  • Use 'tweet this' buttons. When I read some (google reader, facebook, new york times, wherever) if I find it interesting & it has a ‘tweet this’ button – I do. Same with delicious bookmarking!
  • Feed my blog to twitter. When I blog it automatically feeds into twitter (I blog 2-3 times a week usually at lunch or in the morning). I then schedule my blog posts over the week.
  • I tweet my photos through to twitter using picnik.Tweet pix and posts occasionally via mobile (mostly when traveling).
  • Schedule tweets through futuretweets ( so that I spread out things like my photos over the day (or week)
  • Connect with new followers. When I get new followers, I usually at least send them a Hi or a message  (sometimes it’s a private direct message aka DM)
  • Connect with those I follow. When I follow someone new, if I’ve met them IRL life, I pop them a mention @buffyjhamilton met you at a conference – your presentation on ereaders and learning rocked. (that kind of thing).
  • Respond to my messages. I watch for @ (mentions) and RTs (Retweets) to me and I also acknowledge them or answer them unless spam).
  • Use hashtags. I use hashtags when I post so that others can find my topics.
  • Meme. I occasionally do the memes, followfriday is a way to shout out/acknowledge those you follow who rock.#frifotos is a way to highlight and share photos. #musicmonday is an excellent way to find some new music. You can find out more about tweetmemes here
  • Ask questions (and answer questions, too). I do talk to my followers. Ask them how their day is going, what they’ve learned today, what creative thing they did, something like that… I also use twitter when I need tech support, or help especially with software.
  • Comment on posts from those I follow. If a RT or mention a post, I usually comment on it, too.
  • Use twitter instead of facebook. I tweet to facebook instead of just posting a link to facebook (I use selective tweets in facebook so that I don’t flood my facebook feed, either – that way I hit 2 audiences with one post)
  • Participate in twitter chats. I do 1 or 2 twitter chats a week if I can – sometimes I just stumble across them (found several seo chats that way) other times I visit the "regulars": #libchat which is library related; #blogchat on Sunday night coordinated by Mack Collier which is about well... blogging but every angle imaginable (we even do site reviews on occasion - brave souls) - lots of high energy discussion. For fun there's social media slumber party on Friday by Dabney Porte /social media girlfriends (everyday). Some of the chats also followup or have companion content via other media @prosperitygal coordinates #speakchat Mon 9pm ET & produces radio shows #BBSradio Mondays 12pm ET and #WIBRadio (Women in business) follows. I know, If you think you're not in business - you're wrong - we're all commodities and businesses these days; our name is our brand (& for those of us who do consulting and freelance work no way around the business part of it).
Words of advice
  • schedule time – it doesn’t have to be every day, maybe a certain amount of time that you’d read the paper or watch tv or even say Friday afternoon for an hour (or whenever there is a chat you want to do).
  • don’t argue with people on twitter – 1)it’s pointless and 2)it’s public.
  • be professional but personal. 
  • be real. 
  • fill out your bio completely, put up a nice photo, and choose a nice background. People do judge based on those things. 
  • subscribe (follow) people that you admire – but don’t just follow – twitter is a conversation. 
  • on that note: don’t just have a conversation, share too.
  • don’t overshare (foursquare posts drive me batty)
  • just do it – if you want to network, you have to tweet at least somewhat regularly although it doesn’t have to be 24/7 by any means.

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