Monday, January 31, 2011

{How to Twitter} with Beth from Dot in the City!

When I first started #SetUpShop I received a number of comments from fellow bloggers who mentioned that they would love to participate however they were unsure of how to tame the Twitter beast. I had read a great post by Beth at Dot in The City about using technology and I thought she would be perfect to explain Twitter and the in's and out's!

Hello Hiya luv readers!
I am so excited Gina invited me to post today
and about a topic that's become part of my every day life: Twitter
I was introduced to Twitter in 2009 by Ed Cabellon.
{source}
I will start by sharing WHY you should join Twitter:
1 -To connect & network with others, build community.
You can find others with shared interests,
whether it's dog owners, hobbies or professional interests.
2 -Source of support;
you can ask questions & get answers
3 -Current & yields real-time results
[there are plenty of news sources to follow]
4 -Source of free development 
whether you participate in tweet chats or network with colleagues,
you can likely find others who share your passion.
5 -Fun!
Once you get the hang of it, you may find it a challenge to stop tweeting.
You'll meet others, connect and grow!

HOW to get started:
1 -Choose your handle [the words that follow the @ symbol]
and will be what other Twitter users know you by.
My advice is to choose either your name, blog or shop name
because it makes it easier for people to find and remember you.
It's a bit different from choosing an AOL handle like 
Shopgirl [btw, I love that movie, but it's so 1998].
2 -Select a photo [it will show up when you tweet & others will see it]
My personal thought is that you should choose an image 
that matches your handle. 
If you go with your name, a photo of yourself is perfect
if you choose your shop name, your shop logo makes sense, 
but this is not a 'rule.'
3 -Write your Bio [for others to get a glimpse as to what you're about]
Do not leave this blank because it can make you appear to be SPAM.
Consider who you hope to connect with on Twitter
and how you want to be perceived before writing it.
The Bio can be similar to what's in your "about me" on your blog, 
but you are limited to 140 characters.
4 -Website [there is an option to provide your web address]
This is helpful to let others know about your blog
and to find other Twitter friend's blogs.
Fill it in with your blog or shop,
whichever you want to drive traffic toward.
5 -Appearance of your page [choose colors, backgrounds, etc.]
There are all types of options for this.
My recommendation is to match your blog [if you have one]
for consistency sake. 
If you do not have a blog or shop, then keeping it easy to read is helpful.
{a sample of how my bio appears}
WHO to follow
1 -Colleagues, fellow bloggers & those you want to network with
2 -Local & handmade businesses and restaurants
3 -News sources [international to local], government officials, etc.
4 -Groupon and other web deals
5 -Celebrities/Athletes/Musicians
6 -Your Alma Mater [I work in high ed, can you tell?]
7- Almost anything you're interested in can be found

But HOW do you find people to follow?
1 -Use the search function in Twitter
2 -Look on lists in Twitter
[they're typically in categories of common interests]
3 -Use the find people function if you know someone's handle
4 -Look at other's tweets and you can see who they mention
5 -Look at your favorite blog or shop to see if they're on Twitter

Now that you're setup, it's Time to Tweet!
1 -You'll have a 140 character limit for each tweet,
so be concise, it makes you think before you tweet.
2 -Forget the Facebook status state of mind.
3 -Be informative.
4 -Be relevant, add to the dialogue
5 -Give as much as you get;
if you ask a question, answer someone else's question.

[BTW, thank you for bearing with me! I know this is a lot of info]

What to Include in a Tweet
@ mentions
If you go to a restaurant that has a Twitter account,
you can tell others using the @ symbol and its handle in your tweet.
# hashtag
It is used to group tweets together.
You can search a given hashtag and find others who have used it.
This is key to participating in a chat on Twitter because 
it allows a group of chats to be viewed together.
{example of mention & hashtag}
photos
You can add a photo to a tweet by using TwitPic.com 
or a number of web-based programs,
most Twitter clients on smart phones have this option.
[remember a picture is 1000 words, take that 140 character limit!]
{example}
shrink a link
Due to the 140 character limit, there are ways to add a link 
to a webpage, blog, article, etc. using sites like tinyurl.com
location
You can add your location to your tweet.
[I typically do this when I'm in a public place 
by using foursquare]

WAYS to Tweet
[you do not have to tweet using Twitter alone, there are 3rd party clients] 
Apps for Android, iPhone, Blackberry, etc.
for further explanation on 3rd party clients check out this post on my blog

Are you ready to sign up for Twitter?
I hope so & hope to get a tweet from you
You can find me @bbgoad
For more info on how participate in a Tweet chat, read this post.

Thank you, Gina, for inviting me to share all this info
and I hope you'll visit me at dot...in the city soon!


Thanks Beth! Was I right or what? Beth knows her stuff! I am so impressed with this tutorial and I hope that it is helpful! Sign up for twitter today! Add Beth @bbgoad and add me too @hiyaluv

9 thoughts:

Sarah B. said...

Man... where was she when I was a newbie?!? Very helpful advice!!

Watkins35 said...

gosh, I never knew there was that much to it - very interesting, thanks x

Mama Pea said...

Great post! I think the hardest part of starting Twitter was building up the lists of "Followed" and "Followers." It took me some time to get the hang of it.

Sandy a la Mode said...

oh wow!! this is such a great informative article about twitter hehe!! i LOVE twitter! :)

la petite coquine said...

What a wonderful twitter intro! I still feel like such a boob when I use it, and in the last two weeks, I haven't been able to keep up at all! How do some ladies tweet so frequently?!

Kara said...

Thanks for such a great post Gina and Beth!! I NEEDED this!

Jessa | ReArtingDotNet said...

This is a wonderful post full of great info!

When I first started on Twitter a few months back, I was lost and this post had not been written yet, so I found this book:

http://www.amazon.com/Twitter-Book-Tim-OReilly/dp/0596802811

to be the most informative of all the ones I read.

Hope this helps someone!

The Bonjour Four said...

Wow so helpful! Thanks!!

ALELY said...

thank you for this post and for the link to beth's blog. i'm still so new to twitter and have been wanting to join #setupshop twitter chat but didn't know how to. now my questions have been answered.

i've been following your tweets and now your blog. happy to meet you!

i am here:
www.ohsweetleeme.blogspot.com
and tweet here:
ohsweetleeme

have a loveLee saturday!
xo,
alely

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