Posted by Craig Kanalley | Posted in Tips | Posted on 02-12-2011
It’s time to bring back Twitter Journalism. And what better time than the present?
In between jobs, tonight I spoke at the Columbia University Journalism School’s advanced social media workshop with the amazing Sree Sreenivasan (@Sree). (Don’t miss Sree’s Storify of the event here.)
Thanks to the many live-tweeters during my time on stage (scrolling through after was really interesting!), I’m able to put together some highlights. Here are 10 tips to make the most of Twitter, based on some of my learnings the past three years.
1. You have to start somewhere: You don’t have to know everything about Twitter to get started. It’s a never-ending stream. Just jump right in.
2. Who you follow is so important: This ultimately defines your Twitter experience. Follow people you admire, who inspire and who are doing what you want to do.
3. It’s OK to get a little obsessed: Making the most of Twitter requires a lot of time, experimentation and energy. Keep at it. You’ll learn a lot and have a chance to network.
4. Help others, they’ll help you: Engage with and help others whenever you can. The great thing is if you keep doing this, it’ll come back to you.
5. You’ll never know everything: The best part about Twitter is nobody has all the answers and you’re always learning. Twitter’s a great place to learn new things in general.
6. Tweet frequently: You don’t have to post 20 times a day, but at least stay active if you can. Mix in replies and retweets so it’s not just you talking.
7. Don’t trust everything you see: Be skeptical of what you read. Spend some time with the post “How To Verify A Tweet.”
8. Connect with your followers: Get to know your audience and try to post tweets that provoke emotion, are controversial or have universal appeal, as these tend to do best.
9. Think before you tweet: Make sure you know what you’re saying and you’re comfortable saying it. Also, ask yourself – will this interest other people?
10. Network: Twitter’s a great way to get to know people of interest to you. And not just publicly, use private messages too. If comfortable enough, consider meeting in person.
*BONUS* Tip from @Sree: “Make your tweets blue.” Every tweet should have a link, @ mention, or hashtag. It stands out on Twitter and it just makes the most of the platform. For every tweet you include an @ mention, you know at least someone will read it.