Posts Tagged ‘twitter103’

Twitter 201: Part 3 – Best Twitter Apps & Advice

February 12, 2008

Here’s the final part of Twitter 201 which will cover the best applications for Twitter, as well as a few things I’d advise against on Twitter. If you missed earlier parts, here are the links to part 1 and part 2.

Best Apps For Twitter

1) Tweetscan – Allows you to search for specific things that people are Tweeting about. This is a favourite of mine and I’ve had a great experience where I was searching for “chinese new year”, found someone else’s blog, commented on it and a reader of that blog then came here and commented. Can’t recommend this enough

2) Snitter is an application you download to your desktop and it looks a little something like this:

Snitter

The benefit is simple: you don’t have to continually go to the Twitter website, but just update your Tweets from this instead. Your friends’ updates will be sent right to you as well. I’ve been using this for a few days and have found it to be fairly non-intrusive.

3) Twitter Cal helps with productivity and scheduling, which can be useful. I haven’t personally used this very often, but the perks are definitely there.

4) Facebook Application – search for this on Facebook, and anytime you update your Twitter status, your Facebook status gets updated at the same time. Pretty neat.

General Twitter Advice

Know who your audience is. This can make a difference between whether you Tweet yourself to remember the milk, or publicising something to friends.

Too much “noise”. Twitter your thoughts (Why I dislike Chinese New Year) vs actions (wondering which pair of socks to wear). Do keep in mind that Twitter also functions as an extension of your personal brand, and people will stop following you if you post too many frivolous Tweets.

Be aware of who you’re following. Best example of this – When Seth Godin isn’t Seth Godin.

Trivia

SianAh – Trust Singaporeans to come up with a Twitter clone for you to fill in what’s bothering you. Unfortunately, I think SianAh is gone now because I can’t access the website

That brings me to the end of the Twitter201 posts. I really hope you enjoyed it and most importantly, learned something that will help you use Twitter a little better. As always, feel free to comment if you have other uses/suggestions on Twitter below.

References:

Publishing 2.0 – Why I Stopped Using Twitter
Chris Brogan – Twitter Revisited
ProBlogger – 9 Benefits Of Twitter For Bloggers, Tips For Bloggers
Lifehack – Twitter: Use It Productively

Edit: There’s a new Twitter write-up on Makeuseof that just got posted which covers almost the same scope as this but with variants in the apps and with a section on word tracking. Worth a look!

Twitter 201: Part 2 – How To Make Twitter Useful & Grow Your Network

February 11, 2008

Part 2 of Twitter coverage focusing on making Twitter useful and growing your network. If you missed it, part 1 was an introduction to Twitter & its uses.

How Is It Useful?

For Twitter to be useful, it’s got to be more than a website you visit from time to time to update your status. It actually has to be a part of your daily life. One of the websites I read actually had the person saying he sets specific times of the day to remind himself to Twitter.

Once Twitter is a permanent feature in your day, you need to generate enough friends or acquaintances to fully realise the network externalities of Twitter, and eventually translate this network into real benefits.

How Do You Grow Your Network

1) Join or create a conversation. This is relatively simple, reply to what people are asking/saying to “appear” on their radar. If you’re replying to someone directly, use @theirusername so that they know it. Most importantly: Do not just broadcast one-way. That makes it very hard for someone to enter a conversation with you.

2) Post interesting/thought-provoking Tweets. The thing about Twitter, is many people on it just generate “noise”, such as my example yesterday. It’s fine from time to time, but reading about a friend who just updates about going to the toilet, choosing underwear, printing notes etcetc will get tiring. So how do you not create “noise”? Chris Brogan has great advice: “Instead of answering “What’re you doing?”, try answering “What as your attention?””

In part 3 of Twitter 201: best apps for Twitter and what not to do on Twitter. Check back or subscribe to my RSS if you don’t want to miss it. Once again, feel free to follow me on Twitter: uniquefrequency

Twitter 201: Part 1 – What Is Twitter & What Uses Does It Have?

February 9, 2008

TwitterRoughly trawling through 10 webpages and roughly 470 comments later, I’m ready to “graduate” to Twitter201 and give you a good if not definitive guide to Twitter and it’s uses. This will be part 1 of 3, so check back or subscribe to my RSS feed to know when parts 2 and 3 are out.

What Is Twitter?

Twitter is a mashup between instant messaging (IM), email, facebook and even sms. It’s mobile, can be targeted specifically at friends or widely at anyone you choose, is instantaneous, and social.

When you visit Twitter, you’ll be prompted: “What are you doing?” and that’s exactly what Twitter does: let your friends/acquaintances know what you’re doing at any given time. For example, mine currently says “yet another great cup of Hazelnut latte at Borders Bistro”, that lets people know what I’m doing and where I’m at. Let me just say that that’s a bad example of how to use Twitter, and a good example of “noise”. More on that in part 2.

If I haven’t made it clear by now, Twitter’s usage is to help you stay connected with whoever you choose.

More Twitter Usages

Besides connecting people, Twitter also allows you to ask questions to find out more about what the people in your network think or what they’re doing. A really good example is found on ProBlogger where Darren got 30 responses to a question in 10 minutes. (You should really click on the link and check out the screenshots to get an idea of what I’m saying).

Also Twitter can be used very easily as a traffic generating device. Everytime I have a new blogpost, I announce it on Twitter for anyone who’s interested.

Twitter can also be used as a to-do-list. Remember The Milk is a cool site where you can send messages to your Twitter to remember stuff like, well, buying milk. If your phone is internet or wi-fi enabled, this can be even more useful because you can just update your Twitter status to remind yourself to do something later.

Finally, Twitter can be used for friendsourcing. Surfing around Twitter the past few days, I’ve seen quite a few tweets going like “need a ______ on behalf of a friend”, which can be really useful if there’s something specific you need, and a particular audience you want to tap onto.

Before I end, let me say that this list is nowhere near exhaustive and of course there are business uses that I’ve neglected to mention. Given that I don’t own a business, I don’t think I have the necessary expertise to talk about that. Also, this guide is targeted at the average blogger trying to figure out how to use Twitter for the first time, I’ve decided to leave out all the business bits.

Part 2 should be up tomorrow, covering what you need to do to make Twitter useful, as well as how to grow your Twitter network. Meanwhile you may want to check out my previous posts Twitter 101, Twitter 102 and Twitter 103, as well as let me know what’s on your mind with regards to Twitter in the comments below!

PS: If you like what I’m doing, please add me to your Technorati favourites (Add to Technorati Favorites) and/or follow me on Twitter, user: uniquefrequency


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