An Updated Guide to Twitter

Casey BartoNot surprisingly, a lot has been happening in the Twitter world since Lesley Matt, another Lunch Pail contributor, wrote a beginner’s guide to Twitter a few months ago. In fact, 50 million tweets per day fly through Twitter’s network. To put that in perspective, Twitter saw only 35 million tweets per day in 2009.
With the millions and millions of tweets flooding through Twitter on a daily basis, it becomes extremely difficult (and frustrating) to keep track of conversations, link traffic and stay on top of trending topics. There are plenty of applications and programs available to meet your tweeting needs. After consulting websites, reports, articles and books on Twitter that discussed anything from tips for increasing followers to programs that analyze your Twitter reach, I thought I would share some of what I learned.

As most Twitter users know, it is extremely important to shorten a URL if you are going to post a link. There are a variety of URL shortening services available, but one of my personal favorites is bit.ly.The site not only allows you to shorten a URL, but also tracks the number of clicks, tweets, and social network mentions a link receives. And, best of all it is free.

Twitalyzer is also good. It provides a wealth of measurements for reach and engagement, and even provides tips on how to improve your Twitter reach and performance. If you would like to know the hot topic of the moment on Twitter, check out Twitscoop. Twitscoop allows you to view a cloud of trending topics, instead of the ten you usually see on Twitter.

Twubs is a useful application that allows you to register a hashtag and create a social group around the topic. This helps minimize the likelihood the hashtag is in use by someone else, and creates a place for discussion.

If you want to see how all of this works, follow Knotice on Twitter!

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2 Comments

  1. Posted February 25, 2010 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    thanks for your post. But I still don’t understand why it is important to have the url shortened if it ‘fits’ in the 140 characters. When a URL is shortened I rarely click on it as it says little that gives you an idea of what you are going to ‘click on’. Time is very short and very valuable so I just don’t bother. Sometimes I’ve noticed the URL is auto shortened by twitter (even if it fits!) – seems we don’t have a choice sometimes anyway. As you can gather, I’m kinda new to Twitter so haven’t figured out the intricacies and reasons why as yet. Please explain. Thanks

  2. Casey Barto
    Posted February 25, 2010 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    Hi Jan,

    Thanks for your comment. A full URL may fit within the 140 character limit, but it doesn’t leave you much, if any, room to add context to the link.

    It is extremely important to add context to the link you would like your followers to click.

    Some URL shorteners, like bit.ly, provide a glimpse of the traffic your link receives. This can be extremely helpful because you can see if people are clicking the link and what they are saying about the content. But, the best URL shorteners are the ones that are already part of a direct digital marketing platform (for example, Knotice has one in our platform, Concentri).

    Adding context to the link, shortening the link and tracking its traffic are all ways to improve your reach on Twitter.

    Hope this helps.


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