3 Fresh Ways to Use Twitter

Picture of Aliza ShermanAliza Sherman is a web pioneer, author, and international speaker. Sherman is the author of 8 books about the Internet including The Everything Blogging Book, Streetwise Ecommerce, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Crowdsourcing and Social Media Engagement for Dummies.

3 Fresh Ways to Use Twitter

Just starting out with Twitteror have you been using Twitter for the last year or more? Understanding the best ways to use Twitter, and how to keep your tweets fresh and relevant, can be a challenge with such a fast-moving, limited character count platform. Here are three ways to use Twitter to build your brand, attract attention, and drive traffic to better engage your followers.

1. Pin a Tweet

After you’ve uploaded your cover image, picked a clear profile image, and written a snappy and concise Twitter account bio, pin a tweet that features something you want your followers to know. A pinned tweet remains at the top of your Twitter account page until you either remove it or pin another tweet to replace it.

  • Current company news
  • your top products
  • a description of who you are and what you do
  • a link to a news article about you or your company
  • a short introductory video

A handy way to include more information in a single tweet is to use the “Add Another Tweet” feature on the tweet you are composing with the intention of pinning. Once you begin to compose a tweet, a white plus sign appears in a blue circle that allows you to append another tweet to the previous one, creating a continuous thread of tweets. Tweet threads let you tell a story or add more than 4 images to a single message.

2. Try Newer Twitter Features

Twitter rolled out two features that really change things up in terms of how you use the platform to communicate. One newer feature is the audio tweet. When you go to compose a tweet, a set of purple vertical lines appear as an option next to the add an image icon where you can begin recording a message. Audio tweets are a nice addition to text, image or video tweets. Another newer feature is the Fleet. If you are familiar with Instagram Stories, multimedia posts that consist of images or video with embellishments like text overlays and emoji, then you’ll get the Twitter Fleet. These posts are fleeting as in they disappear 24 hours after you post them, get it?

Not every new feature on a social network is going to work for you. Knowing what they are and what they do can help you decide if you should incorporate them into your regular social media efforts. Adding variety to the way you use Twitter can draw new attention to your Twitter feed.

3. Follow What Twitter Recommends

Each social network usually publishes tips for using Twitter to promote a company or product. Read Twitter’s business website to get tips on using images, video and more. Some Twitter advice includes:

  • Use only one to two hashtags per tweet.
  • Try to include a clear call to action (this helps drive traffic)
  • Avoid writing copy in ALL CAPS
  • Consider using emoji to add emotion (in a way appropriate for your brand)
  • Avoid images with heavy text
  • Keep videos to 15 seconds or less
  • When using video, add captions in case people are viewing with the sound off

While it is great to hear from experts who have opinions and recommendations for how to use Twitter and other social networks, going straight to the source can also prove fruitful.

Twitter continues to change year after year, yet it remains one of the top social networks, ideal for current news and information and for showcasing your expertise. You should be able to get better engagement and see positive results when you use Twitter properly and leverage more of its features.