So I Made A Twitter Account. Now What?


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My Guide To How I Use Twitter.

Tired of hearing "Twitter! Uh! I just don't GET it!" and on the request of some people, I put together a little guide on how I use Twitter. Hope it helps!

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So I Made A Twitter Account. Now What?

  1. 1. This is to serve as a guide for Twitter AFTER you’ve set up an account. For more information on Twitter basics, visit
  2. 2. Hi everyone! I’m a HUGE fan of Twitter despite spending a significant amount of time talking about how I didn’t get it and how I thought it was stupid and full of people saying stupid things like I’m eating a big cheeseburger! Big whoop-dee-doo. But after I saw a bunch of normal and respectable people creating Twitter accounts, I became curious. And once I got involved, I started seeing that it had a variety of purposes.
  3. 3. Twitter becomes more useful once you stop using it as a form of broadcast, and instead use as a functional tool for whatever purpose suits you. This is different than Facebook, which primarily is a tool for communication. Here are some uses for Twitter:
  4. 4. Sharing information. This is my favorite way to use Twitter. By connecting with people you find interesting, you can get their recommendations on what’s going on online and share your own findings. Reading all sorts of news. This could be ad industry news, sports news, alumni news, celebrity news, or real life news news. Twitter can link you in to what’s going on in real time. How do you think I knew about MJ before everyone else? Reading product opinions. Use Twitter’s search feature to observe conversation about products and even search for discounts or coupons. The search tool also works as a brand monitoring tool- you can instantly see what people are discussing concerning any brand, or topic. Building your personal brand. If you want to gain control over your reputation online (i.e. your Google results), Twitter is a way for you to chose what people see when they search for you.
  5. 5. Starting a micro-blog. Too busy (and too cool) for a full-blown blog? Twitter technically IS a micro-blogging service, so writing some short and sweet posts on any subject is simple. Staying in touch. For those popular kids who have friends, family, and business contacts that they’d love to stay in touch with, Twitter is extremely useful to share personal updates with the masses. Asking questions. If you want to get an answer to a question, help with customer service, tech support, or general advice on any topic, asking questions through Twitter allows many people – your followers and strangers- to respond. Journaling dietary habits. Actually, there are people who DO write about what they’re eating because Twitter users can participate in a community, like a weight loss support group. You might get in trouble with your followers for that big cheeseburger.
  6. 6. There are some crazy uses of Twitter accounts out there. Here are some: @CookBOOK 140 character recipes. @AlbionsOven This London bakery tweets about fresh treats. @macacodasorte The first monkey on Twitter…really. @don_draper The inner thoughts of a Mad Man. Yes, a fictional character from 40 years ago had a Twitter account before you did. @Tweecret Like Post Secret, this is a collection of anonymous secrets. @earthquake Documents the latest earthquake activity. @playtwivia Answer trivia questions by replying to this account. @themime Ha.
  7. 7. Once you start using Twitter, you’ll find there are even more ways to use it. From your phone. I use Twitterberry for my Blackberry (although I might be switching to UberTwitter); iPhone users use Tweetie ($3) or Twitterfon. You can also text your tweets to Twitter by following directions on the Twitter website. On Facebook. You can automatically have your tweets shown as Facebook status updates through Through a desktop application. Popular ones include Tweetdeck, Twitterfeed, and Twitterfox and are primarily for super- users, i.e. not me and probably not you.
  8. 8. And do more with nifty Twitter add-ons. Some (of the hundreds) worth checking out are: Remember The Milk. Follow Remember The Milk and you can add tasks through direct messages and get reminders. Package Track. Use Twitter to track your packages. TweetStats. See graphs of your Tweets. Twazzup. Amped up Twitter search. Twistori. Watch a pretty visualization of what people are feeling…on Twitter. Mr. Tweet. The app suggests relevant followers and recommends you to others.
  9. 9. How else do you find people to follow? Aside from using Twitter’s Find People link, you can use: Facebook. Search “” to see which of your Facebook friends are linking to their Twitter accounts. People In Real Life. Ask them, or even better- make them make an account. That’s how I got friends on Twitter! Search for celebrities and brands you care about. The entire Cyrus clan tweets. News sites and bloggers you already read. Think about the places you read online (like Perez, Mashable, The Onion, and AdAge). Check to see if they have Twitter accounts and keep up with everything at once. Search, through Twitter, for streams devoted to topics you care about. From financial advice to running tips to knock knock jokes, Twitter’s got you covered.
  10. 10. You’ll notice that, thanks to the infamous character limit, Twitter has its own language. Here are some popular terms. Tweet What your message is called @username A public message, directed at a specific user DM Direct Message. This is a private message. RT Retweet, or a copy/ pasted tweet from another user. Tweeps One of the variations of “twitter users”. The more normal-sounding Tweeters never really caught on. Limited space and long URLs causes people to use URL shorteners like and tiny.url. Paste your link into the site for a shortened version. even tracks stats on your links’ clicks. TwitPic Sign in with your Twitter user name and post links to photos using your phone or computer.
  11. 11. #something Hashtags are a way to tag your tweet. They are used in many ways, typically after a tweet but sometimes in them. They are also clickable, which means that you can now search twitter for all uses of that hashtag. The uses of the hashtag: To congregate tweets on a subject (#diabetes). This is typically the only situation where hashtags occur within a tweet. To aggregate tweets for an event (#tribalsummerparty). To organize your own content (#larissastips). For Twitter’s memes (#followfriday). For humor (#peoplereadingtwitterguides). After hashtags became part of Twitter vocabulary, some people create their own as a joke. Ha.
  12. 12. Lastly, some miscellaneous tips…. No one likes a loud mouth (@SpencerPratt). Please don’t update a billion times a day. Don’t just retweet or @reply- create your own content and get involved! Think before you tweet. If you wouldn’t tell someone out loud, would you say something to them online? It’s polite to give credit where credit’s due (plus it helps others find more content), so if you find an interesting link to share, add “via @username/ website” to your tweet. Keep it real…and in perspective. 1/5 of Twitter accounts are dead; half of Twitter users did not tweet this week, and only 5% have more than 100 followers. So pressure. Really.
  13. 13. by Larissa Hayden Account Planner Tribal DDB Worldwide