Of course I had heard of Twitter before, and understood the basic concept, but beyond casually looking at the Twitter pages of some Facebook friends, I never really explored the site or thought about signing up because I thought I had no uses for it. Plus I couldn't understand it. Why the heck are there # signs everywhere and what the heck does RT mean?!
Twitter recently celebrated its five year anniversary, and my lack of knowledge about the not so new social phenomenon had become a bit embarrassing. So I took the plunge and signed up and...I now can't live without it!! I KNOW I'm not the only one who has felt Twitter stupid for too long, so before I provide some Twitter 101 information, let me try and convince you as to why you need to get on the site too!
Why You Need to Get on Twitter
1. You can find out breaking news - from Victoria Beckham's line now being available at Holts, to current events - first. For some reason, I thought that in order to sign up for Twitter, I would need to Tweet. But as Twitter so aptly puts it, "You don't have to build a web page to surf the web and you don't have to Tweet to enjoy Twitter. Whether you tweet 100 times a day or never, you still have access to the voices and information surrounding what interests you. You can contribute or just listen in and retrieve up to the second information. Some people never tweet, they simply use Twitter as a way to get the latest information on their interests."
2. It'll give you the fuzzy wuzzy feeling inside! I loved this video which explains Twitter in plain English. Basically, Twitter asks what are you doing? While we stay in touch with what our friends and family are doing by phone, chat and e-mails, life happens between our point in time contact with them. Twitter allows us to stay connected (therefore feeling the fuzzy wuzzies inside!) with those closest to us, at any time they want to share what they're doing.
3. EVERYONE is on it. Remember when Facebook first came out and people were like "No....I'm good. A face BOOK? Pass!"? Then when it started getting popular, they refused to conform out of principle? And now they're on it. Don't resist. You'll be embarrassed once you have to eat your words and get on it!
All You Need to Know About Twitter in 10 Tweets (they're actually 140 characters each - count 'em if you dare!!)
1. Twitter is an info network made up of 140-character messages called Tweets. Fab way to find out about people and issues you care about!
2. Get started by following friends, family, celebs, organizations. Ex: @cnn, @oprah, @rihanna, @pmharper, @evalongoria, @allsheneedsblog!
3. Tweets from the ppl u follow will show up on your Timeline (kind of like Facebook Newsfeed).
4. If some1 mentions u in their tweet, it'll show up in ur @Mentions page. If any1 uses ur tweet on their page, it'll show on ur Retweets page.
5. U can get Twitter on ur phone to stay current. B the 1st to know about traffic problems, breaking news, and hot trends!
6. Trends show on your home page and are what ppl (whether u follow or not) are most talking about on Twitter. SO COOL!
7. To get people 2 find ur messages, retweet or reply to other Tweets.
8. Also mention other users by their Twitter username (preceded by the @ sign) in your Tweets. Celebs often respond to fan Tweets! Try it!
9. You know the organization or celeb is legitimate if it's a verified account (marked by a small checkmark in a circle).
10. You can protect your account so u can authorize who follows your tweets.
BONUS: I <3 Twitter!!!!!!!!
There you go! All you need to know about Twitter. Get an account and try it out for yourself - you'll get hooked too! Now before I set you free (Twitter, bird, get it?!) you need to know some basic Twitter lingo. Twitter has been kind enough to give us a glossary but here are the top 3 terms you'll need to know to get started.
Abbreviated version of "retweet." Placed before the retweeted text when users manually retweet a message.
Now that you're on Twitter, please follow @allsheneedsblog! And if you do decide to Tweet, don't get too carried away or this will happen:
All she needs to know for now! ;)