Expand Your Sphere with Social Media Week 6 – Twitter

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Welcome to Week Six of the Expand Your Sphere with Social Media Self-Directed Learning.


This week we’ll focus on Twitter – explaining what twitter is and how it can be used. We’ll also explore some 3rd party tools that make managing twitter easy.


Twitter is a microblogging service and communication tool that enables its users to send and read other user messages called tweets. Tweets are text-based posts of up to 140 characters allowing them to be sent via SMS text message. A user can subscribe to other authors tweets by becoming a follower of that author. By utilizing twitter you can instantly update your followers with any relevant information you may come across and immediately reply to their requests. If you have not yet signed up for a Twitter account, you can do so by Clicking Here. If you have any difficulty utilizing the features of Twitter you may want to refer to the help articles mentioned in the first table from week two.

Twitter Strategies & Tips

  • Talk with people – not at them. Twitter is like a public chat room used to engage in conversations with others. Posting announcements from time to time is acceptable, but using twitter exclusively to make one-way broadcasts does not engage your followers in discussion. For example, you’re unlikely to engage people if all you post are open house ads or new listings. On the other hand if you Tweet open ended questions – asking people what they think about the weather, a special event or a topic of local interest, you’re inviting people into a discussion. To build an audience of followers, you will want to engage in conversations.
  • Grow your readership by following other people. Follow people who you find interesting or relevant, and enter into discussion with them on topics of interest. A common objection about twitter is that people are Tweeting about boring things – what they’re eating for lunch, etc. Don’t follow (or un-follow) twitter users if you don’t find what they’re Tweeting to be of interest to you.
  • Select the right message type. There are different types of tweets that can be sent from twitter. View Twitters Help Center: Types of Tweets for more information.
  • Keep it short. Being restricted to 140 characters may make inserting lengthy URL’s into your tweets difficult. By going to Tinyurl.com you can enter in the long URL click Make TinyURL and this will generate an abbreviated URL that you can insert into your tweet


  • Promote your twitter account. Encourage followers by promoting your twitter account through your online communication channels. For more information on promoting your account refer to Promoting your Social media Sites in Week two.
  • Manage your social media channels. There are many tools available to help you manage all your social media communications – allowing you to publish a single message to all social media sites and organize your twitter messages so that they are easier to view. Please see the below table:

Social Media Tools

Social Media Tool Sign – Up Page Online Help/FAQ Recommended Topics
hootsuit hootsuite Sign-Up hootsuite Help Desk
tweekdeck TweetDeck Sign-up Tweet Deck Support

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