Searching for new ways to enjoy the Twitterverse? There’s more to this social media tool than just following celebs and @-replying your fave pals. “There are millions of Twitter accounts out there and part of the fun is finding the great stuff and sharing with others,” says social media researcher and adviser Mo Krochmal. Here, HC shares five ways to enhance your Twitter experience. Check it out!
- Organize or Attend a Tweetup
Tweetups are actual gatherings of Twitter users offline to discuss a particular topic, like this one hosted by She’s the First in December 2010. Often, the tweetup will assign a specific hashtag to the event so folks who can’t attend can follow the conversation in real time. Not only this, but it’s an excellent networking tool and promotes your Twitter handle. International site meetup.com has its own section devoted to tweetups where you can find, start or sponsor your own event. Participating in a tweetup shows others (including employers) that you’re passionate about something. Be sure to check out this Mashable article on how to plan a tweetup. Whether you’re starting the conversation or just taking part, it’s the fact that you’re engaged that makes this a definite Twitter “do.”
- Live Tweet
Live tweeting is when you document an event with quotes and images as they happen in real time with a proper hashtag. Often, companies or organizations will organize a live tweet so they can interact directly with their followers. These are ways for companies to interact with their followers by asking questions or giving away prizes. For example, intern resources like NY Creative Interns or the Intern Queen will host live tweeting hours for students to ask questions and receive expert answers in real time. Much like a tweetup, live tweeting is a great way for anyone who isn’t present to follow the conversation.
Planning an event for your sorority or club next semester? Add a hashtag to the flyers and get the conversation going online–it’s a great promotional tool!
- Utilize Web Applications
There a slew of easy-to-use Twitter applications that can enhance your social media experience. Check out three of my faves below:
- HootSuite: With HootSuite you can schedule tweets ahead of time just like big name businesses Fox and Facebook. Track statistics of several accounts at once with this site’s simple structure and interface.
- Twitter Karma: Is your relationship with your Twitter followers mutual? Use this application to see who unfollows you after you follow them and everywhere in between.
- Klout: Determine your Twitter influence on a score out of 100 that’s calculated by reach, amplification and network. Klout also reveals who you influence and who influences you.
- Attribute sources
Any journalism major can attest: one of our field’s deadliest sins is neglecting to attribute sources. If you’re retweeting (reposting someone else’s message) relevant news or quotes—no matter the industry—make sure you’re giving credit where credit is due. It’s not only courtesy, but also assures your followers that the links you’re suggesting are credible and legitimate. This is an excellent way of building trust with your followers/readers. The following tweet provides a bit of commentary, a retweet from the source, a link, and a mention of the primary source all under 140 characters:
@GenniferDelman: A must-read for all media enthusiasts. RT @Mediabistro: 10 Predictions for the News Media in 2011 (http://on.mash.to/fNniV2) via @mashable
- Master a Tweet Schedule
Want to build a solid readership? You may be sending out quality tweets but your followers not be receive them at the right time. According to thesocialmediaguide.com, the best time to post tweets and gain maximum exposure is at 9:00 am PST. This way you’re hitting three major break times: Work arrival on the west coast, lunchtime on the east coast, and end of the day in London. Enter any user’s handle at tweetoclock.com to find the best suggestion of reaching someone.
From web applications to organizing tweetups, there are many ways to enhance your Twitter experience! Which option will you choose, HCers? Fill us in!
Mo Krochmal, social media adviser and researcher [@krochmal]