Learning Twitter can be a bit intimidating at first. The community speaks their own lingo and interacts in a way that’s completely different than Facebook or email.
You can quickly become “Twitter savvy,” so you can jump in feet first without feeling out of place. Here’s how.
Twitter users (aka. “tweeters”, “tweeps”, or “tweeple”) have their own language. The language is often necessitated because of Twitter’s post length limit. You only have 140 characters, after all. They’re more likely to say “PRT” than “Please retweet” for this reason.
Twitter has a very comprehensive glossary that can really help you use the site optimally.
Learn the various common words and phrases used by the Twitter community.
Twitter Hashtags #
Hashtags (#) are used primarily to identify messages on a certain topic. It’s a good thing to use when you’re inviting people into a particular conversation. You may have seen me and my team at Live Out Loud using hashtags for a multitude of reasons. For example, we use #cashmachine during my 3 Days to Cash Workshops. Someone tweeting about it would put #cashmachine at the end of their tweet. Anyone seeing that tweet could click that hashtag and see all the messages tagged with #cashmachine. This effectively creates a chat room, or message board of sorts, on the spot.
What should you post?
How often should you post? What are topics people are interested in hearing about? There are a lot of questions and discussions on the topic.
The best way to find out for yourself is to start following people in your industry. These could be competitors, customers or industry news channels. Basically, follow anyone that has a strong voice in your market. Then, observe.
This way you’ll start to get a real sense of what your market is like and what conventions are being used. You’ll get a sense for how often others post and what topics people tend to respond to.
Following, Being Followed, Posting Messages
The best way to learn your way around Twitter is to just use it a lot. Before you start using Twitter on your business account, use a personal account. It’s a good idea to keep them separate if you plan on being more personal with friends and family, anyway. But go ahead and start following your friends and ask your friends to follow you. Post tweets and watch your friends respond. Respond to your friends’ tweets.
Just get used to how the whole system works. Once you’ve learned how to create topics with hashtags, you’ve learned the various common words and phrases, you’ve learned how to follow, be followed and post messages, and you’ve basically become comfortable being conversational on Twitter, you’re ready to jump in on your own. Start using it often.
Learning Twitter isn’t hard, it just takes a bit of basic understanding and a lot of regular use. It won’t take long for you to become Twitter savvy.