Getting Started With Twitter

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Introduction to Twitter


  • 1. Getting Started With Twitter

2. What is Twitter?

  • Combination of various forms of communication like e-mail, instant messenger, blogs, and RSS feeds. Difference is that posts, or tweets, arerestricted to 140 characters or less.

3. What Is Twitter?

  • Evolved from simply answering the question, What are you doing? into
    • Shared links to interesting content on the web
    • Conversations around hot topics
    • Shared photos, videos, music
    • Most importantly real time accounts from people who are in midst of a newsworthy event (like a convention or conference), crisis or natural disaster (such as back in June during the elections in Tehran)

4. Twitter Statistics

  • Twitter has 1.5 millionactiveusers with a median age of 31.
  • In October 2009, users sent 26 million tweets per day, up from 2.4 million tweets in January 2009.
  • Tuesday is the most active day for tweeting, followed by Wednesday and then Friday

5. Getting Started

  • Claim your Twitter handle (i.e.
  • Completely fill out your user profile
  • Create your customized background
    • Twitter has a few templates you can choose from
    • Several applications you can use to create your background:
    • Know some HTML? Design your own.
  • Promote your new social media presence(e-mail signature, website, blog entries, cross promotion)

6. Start tweeting!

  • Jump in and get started to give your account some authenticity
  • Remember that you only have 140 characters so make them count!
  • To share blog entries
    • Twitterfeed (
  • To share links
    • Set up an account with Bitly ( ) which allows you to shorten your URLs and track how many clicks your link received

7. Retweeting or RT

  • Twitter users share the best links, tweets, and gems they find from others they are following
  • Important to do in order to build community and not just appear to be putting out your own content,
  • Connect with people and let them know youre there (gain followers!)

8. How do I build community?

  • Start by following everyone in this group and look at who they are following and retweeting
  • Twitter lists
  • Directory of progressives
    • Tweet Progress ( )Can also sign up for a Twitter mentor here
    • Union Twibe ( )
    • People who use #p2 or #topprog hashtags in their tweets

9. What is a hashtag?

  • A community driven naming convention on Twitter to help spread information while also helping to organize it.
  • Favorite tool of conferences and event organizers
  • If everyone agrees to add a certain hashtag after their tweet, it becomes easier to find that topic in search (
    • #hcr health care
    • #p2 and #topprog (progressives)
    • #aflcio09 (convention)
    • #aflciojobs (jobs initiative)


  • If you do nothing else after this meeting:
  • Please claim your Twitter ID!