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  • 1. A TRUE BEGINNERS GUIDE TO GETTING THE MOST OUT OFTwitter by Linden A. Mueller andSarah J. Austin

2. Contents 4The Tweet 5Following 7The @ Replies: Normal and Embedded 9Direct Messages 9Favorites 10 Retweets 11 Hashtags 12 Shortened URLs 13 Twitter Search 13 Automatically-tweeted Blog Posts 15 Twitter.com 15 SMS and Mobile Platforms: Twitterfon 16 Dedicated web applications: HootSuite 17 Dedicated Desktop Applications: TweetDeck & Twhirl 18 Analyzing Your Twitter Prole 18 Managing and Interacting with People 19 Sharing Photographs 19 Staying Productive 20 Staying Informed 20 Sarahs Essential People to Follow 20 Lindens Essential People to Follow 21 Recommended Blogs & Articles 3. A True Beginners Guide to Getting the Most out of Twitter Thank You! After the positive feedback we received from our blog series, A True Begin- ners Guide to Twitter, we decided to put all of that information in one spot, so you can keep it to reference or pass along to other beginners on Twitter. This eBook, A True Beginners Guide to Getting the Most Out of Twitter, is a kit of Twitter denitions, tips, tools, and resources that will get you started on Twitter, whether youre tweeting for yourself or your company or organiza- tion. And if youre a Twitter veteran, well, weve got some handy tips for you, too.A quick word of thanks to Sarahs husband Chris who graciously designed this document. We both love him (but not in the same way). Please check out his blog Esthetik, which features his commentary on design in everyday life, at www.ChristopherMAustin.com or follow him on Twitter (@typograka).Another quick shout-out to Lorraine (@LorraR), a friend of Linden who has become a friend of Sarah and whose Twitter novice-ness was Lindens inspi- ration for this project.And thanks to LifePoint Church (@lifepointozark), who got Sarah thinking about how Twitter can be used in ministry and who has been a Twitter guinea pig on this little journey.Thank you for downloading and reading our labor of love. Love for writing. Love for Twitter. And love for noobs. Certainly, if you have any questions, comments, or constructive criticism, we welcome them. Feel free to contact us on Twitter (@xgravity23, @sarahjoaustin), via email (lam@LindenAMueller. com, sarahjoaustin@gmail.com), or on our blogs (www.LindenAMueller. com/blog, www.SarahJoAustin.com).Linden & Sarah 3 4. A True Beginners Guide to Getting the Most out of Twitter Introduction So youve heard about this Twitter thing and you want to join in, maybe start tweeting to connect with the members of your organization or with the read- ers of your blog. Youve searched the web, but all of the guides you have found so far are aimed at niche users, users who have already mastered the basics. In this eBook, you will learn Twitters basic and advanced functions plus mul- tiple ways for tweeting on the Web, at your desk, and on the go. On top of that, youll get lots of recommended resources, so you can continue learning. Lets get started! Basic Twitter Functions Twitter is simple, but we understand that everyone crawls before they walk, so this section explains the basic functions of Twitter and denes Twitter jar- gon. Youll learn how to create a tweet, nd and follow others, reply to other tweeple, send a direct message, and favorite important tweets.The TweetThis is the building block of Twitter, your 140-character message, sent out to the whole Twitterverse. Whats the point of a tweet? Well, its very much like the sta- tus in Facebook: a short summary of what you are doing now (an update) or a clever observation about the situation you nd yourself in at this moment. As Twitter spread in popularity, many people starting tweeting links to im- ages or interesting articles, and well tell you how you can do more with your4 5. A True Beginners Guide to Getting the Most out of Twitter tweets in a later section.Many people have asked us, Whats the dierence between a tweet and a Facebook status? And our best answer is Twitter is your Facebook status without the Facebook interface. Or it may be easier to think of Twitter as pub- lic instant messaging, a perpetual conversation with people all around the world because it also functions as a messenger, too. In fact, the way you use Twitter may be quite dierent than the way we do because so many third- party Twitter applications exist to make Twitter work for you.FollowingWe suppose that if you like to make pithy statements to yourself about what you are doing, you dont need to follow or be followed on Twitter, but were guess- ing that youd like to use Twitter to interact with your friends and family, people around you geographically, celebrities, and news outlets, to name a few.At Twitter.com, navigate to an account page other than your own, and click the Follow button under their prole picture to begin following them. When you follow someone else, their updates will appear on your Twitter homepage (when you click on Home or Prole at Twitter.com) and in your Twitter time- line. Unlike Facebook, following someone is not necessarily mutual, so you may add celebrities like @RainnWilson or bands like @Coldplay, but they will not necessarily follow you in return. Following and being followed is perhaps the most overwhelming part of get- ting started with Twitter. When youre ready to start following others, click Find People at the top of your Twitter page. Twitter provides four ways to nd5 6. A True Beginners Guide to Getting the Most out of Twitter others to follow: Find on Twitter. If you already have in mind the people you know who are on Twitter, you can search for them by username, rst name, and last name. If youre looking for someone specic, this is the best way to nd them. Find on other networks. If youre brand new to Twitter, using your con- tact lists from Google, Yahoo!, AOL, Hotmail, or MSN is the fastest way to nd people you know because Twitter pairs the email addresses in your accounts with existing Twitter accounts. Invite by email. You can always share Twitter with someone you know by inviting them by email. Even if they choose not to sign up for a Twitter account, they can still follow you by texting follow [username] to 40404 on their cell phones. Suggested users. Unlike Facebook, Twitters list of suggested users are not necessarily people you know personally. More than likely, Twitter will suggest other users who are popular or important on Twitter.Once youve found a handful of people to follow, youre on your way to a ro- bust Twitter account. If youre still looking for people to follow, your best bet is to check out the prole pages of the users you know the best and study who they follow. Chances are theyll know someone you know, too. 6 7. A True Beginners Guide to Getting the Most out of Twitter But a word of caution: Following too many people too fast (by the thousands) will raise a red ag to Twitter that youre a spammer and increases the poten- tial that Twitter will suspend your account.And a note on who not to follow: More than likely someone will follow you that you dont know, and thats OK. Its up to you to decide whether to follow them. If you dont know them personally, its wise to check out their prole page. Youll know theyre spammers by looking at their followers/following ratio; if theyre following hundreds or thousands of people but only a few hundred are following them, theyre probably spammers and following them is a waste of time. The @ Replies: Normal and EmbeddedYouve read an interesting tweet and want to respond. What now? Simply begin your tweet with the at symbol, @, and the tweets authors username, like this7 8. A True Beginners Guide to Getting the Most out of Twitter From Twitter, you can also click the gray arrow that appears on the right of a tweet. A normal @ reply is your side of a public conversation. Your tweet will show up for that user when they click home on the Twitter home page, or if they click @ Replies. Normal @ replies are not private, but Twitter allows each user the ability to control whether or not they see @ replies that arent directed to them (change your settings by going to Settings > Notices > @ Replies).An embedded @ reply is a combination of a normal tweet and a normal @ reply. Unlike a normal @ reply, an embedded @ reply does not begin with @[username], but starts like a normal tweet: with text. Somewhere in the tweet, you will use @[username] to provide a link to that persons Twitter stream, like this: Embedded @ replies serve two purposes: They share your current thoughts and they connect your followers to another tweeter who they might not be following yet. Unlike normal @ replies, followers cannot lter these tweets out by changing their settings, so you know that all of your followers will see these tweets.In March 2009, Twitter changed the way that @ replies are handled. Now, whether you mention someone by putting their @[username] at the begin- ning of the the tweet or embed it into your tweet, the tweet will show up when they click on @[username] on their prole page. They are now called Men- 8 9. A True Beginners Guide to Getting the Most out of Twitter tions, and it makes it much easier to carry on conversations with multiple people. Before Mentions, if you started your tweet with several usernames, only the rst person would be notied in their @ reply tab. Now, everyone you direct a message to will know. In the rest of this eBook, we shall use the new term, Mentions. Direct MessagesDirect Messages (DMs) are very easy to understand: They are private messag- es, readable only by the person you send it to. To send a DM, write simply start your tweet with the letter D followed by the receivers username. FavoritesFound a tweet that you like and dont want to lose track of? At Twitter.com, simply click the gray outline of a star that appears on the right-hand side of every tweet. It will be lled in with yellow, and the tweet will ap


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