Monday, August 11, 2008

Step One: The Tweet

Beginning at the beginning...

Each time you enter something into the 140-character box at the top of your Twitter account and click the box labeled "Update," you have posted what is called a Tweet.

Individual Tweets can be anything:
  • A brief reflection on a current event

  • A short joke

  • An interesting trip or hobby you're undertaking or considering

  • A link to something funny / interesting / frickin' awesome

  • A link to a news article

  • A link to an intersting blog or video

  • An image link (we'll get to this)

  • A quiz or poll question (if you have enough followers to actually get a response)

  • Or even just a funny / interesting thought you had about something random

But what you do NOT want to Tweet includes the following:

  • "What are you doing right now?" - this is the worst possible way to use Twitter. Trust me, I've stopped following everyone who uses it this way because, for most people, it is Simply. Not. Interesting.

  • The fact that you're sitting in traffic.

  • The fact that you're sitting in a waiting room.

  • The fact that you're stiting in traffic so you can go sit in a waiting room.

  • What you had for breakfast.

The point is: even though the Twitter site itself asks the evergreen question "What are you doing?" this is perhaps the single-least-interesting way to use the service and it virtually guarantees that nobody will care to follow your Tweets.


  • You have an incredibly intersting, hilarious or controversial perspective on things. Nobody cares what you had for breakfast...but if you make a darkly-humorous joke about having endangered species leftovers well, that's a different story and it might find a following!

  • You are a famous person. I could give a flying funk that you're out sun-bathing, but for some strange reason that I can't put my finger on, seeing the same Tweet from Jessica Alba would actually be of interest...especially if a photo link were attached.

  • What you are doing right now is actually quite unique. I could care less that you're waiting for your plane to take off. But it would be significantly more interesting that you're waiting for your turn to jump from your skydiving vessel! See the difference?

Final thought:

Do not take these pointers at face value. They, like everything else on this blog, are guidelines and are meant to help you learn to be a successful Twitter user and to have some fun with it! Find your own style and say what you want to say. After all, everything you post on here is, by definition, a unique Tweet. If nothing else, it is uniquely yours.

Have fun out there, you newbie Twits!


Image courtesy of - snag it on a t-shirt at their site, sassypants.

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