I just wrote this piece for ALHFAM‘s upcoming Bulletin and thought I would share it here as well, in case you have been wanted to jump on the Twitter band wagon and have been scared!
Start On the web:
1. Visit twitter.com. Select a Twitter name (something similar to your own name or organization is best) and a password.
2. Follow the tutorial on the screen. It will ask you to select some people to “follow” and will provide a “helpful” list of celebrities. If you are not inclined to follow Kim Kardashian or Lady Gaga, search for a term like “history” or “museum.” This will give you lists of people to follow who are relevant to you. Click the “Follow” button next to the name of anyone you are interested in following.
3. After you finish the tutorial, you will see your Twitter page and Twitter feed, where all of the tweets of your followers are listed. You can read over these tweets to get a sense for Twitter “lingo.” I have included some hints below also.
4. Click on “View my profile page” on the upper left under your name. This will take you to a page where you can upload a photo, a description of yourself, and other information.
You are all set to Tweet!
1. Type your first tweet into the box that says “Compose new Tweet”. A tweet must be 140 characters or less. Twitter will keep count of how many characters you have left.
Your first tweet can be as simple as “This is my first tweet!” I’ve seen many people say that!
# (hash tag)
People use hash tags to “keyword” tweets. For example, at the last AAM conference, they used #AAM2012…a search of that hash tag now will bring up a list of all of the tweets made during that AAM conference that include the hash tag.
@ (“at” symbol)
The @ sign is how you address other Tweeters on Twitter. Here is an example of a tweet I could send to Mystic Seaport:
Hi @mysticseaport! Hope to see you at #AAM2013!
Sometimes you want to include a URL in your tweet but the URL is very long (which will use up your 140 characters!) You can use sites like “http://bit.ly.com” or “http://tinyurl.com” to shorten your URL. I could tweet the following:
Everyone please read my blog on location-based social media tools here: http://tinyurl.com/7hkh3wm
So those are the basics on tweeting – give it a try!