Twitter basics

Twitter Basics

This session covers the micro-blogging too, Twitter.  Individuals can choose to have private accounts but the vast majority of Twitter accounts are not private.


Twitter lingo:

Followers vs. Following: In Twitter, “Following” someone simply means that their posts then are fed into your twitter feed.  When you follow someone (or they follow you) they are a follower (which sounds rather evangelical).

One’s handle: All twitter accounts start with the @ symbol – such as @thompsonriversu

Hashtag: The # in Twitter is called a hashtag and is a way for individuals to find information on a particular topic

Tweet: A Tweet is a message posted to twitter limited to 140 characters, but abbreviations, images, videos are used in robust and interesting ways to help convey ideas.

ReTweet: A retweet simply shares someone else’s Tweet to those who follow up.  You can simply retweet, or add commentary as a “Quote Tweet”.

Reply: Is a way to reply about a tweet.

Like: A way to show you’ve liked a tweet.

Mention: When you include a person’s @name in your tweet, it brings your tweet to their attention.

Twitter Profile: You can set up your Twitter profile to include your photo (or other image), a header image & biography (limited to 140 characters).

Pinned Tweet: You can choose to “pin” a tweet to the top of your profile which will draw attention to it as it will remain at the top.


Tweeting tips:

  • keep your tweets short and focused and on one specific thing.
  • Include links to websites (use tinyurl or such to shorten these), images, animated gifs, videos, etc. – media is a powerful way to share your message far beyond the 140 character limit.
  • Use relevant hashtags.  These connect your tweet with relevant conversations.
  • Poll and ask questions – you can include Twitter polls on topics or simple put out an open-ended question

Tweet Activity Dashboard:

  • Twitter has a lot of analytics which for individuals may not be as important as they are for businesses, but the Tweet Activity Dashboard shows how many times Twitter users have Retweeted, liked, seen or replied to your tweet.  Here’s the link to the Tweet activity dashboard 

Audience insights dashboard – this contains information about the people who follow you on Twitter, you can track your follower growth, etc.  Here’s the link to the Audience insights dashboard


More: There’s a good list of terms on Twitter lingo, etc. from Twitter: