According to social media strategist, Safko (2010), there are over 75 million twitter accounts and more than 35 million tweets posted daily. What once was a tool for truncated status updates has now become an effective tool to chat with friends, share pictures and relevant news, and of course, network.
Keeping up with Tweets
It is nearly impossible to follow tweets 24 hours a day, which makes it easy to miss a pertinent piece of information tweeted by someone who is awake while you’re asleep. A novice tweeter who follows less than 100 friends, colleagues, and other relevant connections may not experience this frustration as you can easily scroll through your timeline.
The Active Tweeter
An active tweeter, on the otherhand is someone who engages with followers and hose following. You ask and answers questions; comment on status updates; share superficial or more in-depth details of your life; and advertise your business, events, and recognitions. You typically have at least 300 followers and follow at least double that. Certainly staying engaged on twitter can seem tedious without some simple strategies.
ListsThe simplest way to stay active with multiple followers and follows is to categorize individuals based on a variety of characteristics. The twitter website makes it very simple to create and maintain lists. For example, one list might be friends and family; another might be local colleagues; perhaps a third might be current clients. If you intend to use your account for both professional and personal purposes, you might find sports, music, or church as other useful lists. Once these lists have been created, you can access these lists to follow less tweets.
Applications & Twitterchats You may find twitter’s web version either extremely user-friendly or an incredible annoyance. Fortunately, there are other options to keep you engaged.
- Tweetdeck: Both a desktop and mobile application, tweetdeck not only supports multiple twitter accounts, but it also allows you to create multiple columns. Whether you want to create one column per list or one column per search, the ability to create multiple columns is endless. Tweetdeck also allows you to personalize the type of notification for each column and how often each column refreshes. It is perhaps the best application for you to follow tweets from different user-created categories.
There are a number of other applications that support twitter lists; however, they do not provide the multiple columns that Tweetdeck does. For most of these other applications, you must search through options to find lists; then, most often, you’re only able to see one list at a time.
- Tweetchats: I’m not exactly sure what to call these, but twitterchats seem to be the right moniker. I’ve only recently became aware of said chats by following a tweeter who was a guest moderator. Joining one twitterchat introduced me to another.
Twitterchats don’t require any type of registration or RSVP. You just need to be on twitter when they start and join in the conversation. And, by conversation, I mean answering thought-provoking questions asked by the moderator and commenting on what other chatters are saying. While twitterchat is relatively new, there are already many twitterchats on twitter. Fortunately, a smart individual created a database whereby you can search for the twitterchat that most interests you.
Effective Twitter Use
Despite the number of years twitter has been in existence, it is important given the number of users of the social network that certain strategies be utilized to make twitter a continued useful source of networking.