Twitter has over 100 million users and is growing by 300,000 users a day. That works out to over 8% growth a month. Interestingly, Hitwise, the leading online competitive intelligence service, recently revealed that social networks now receive more Internet visits than search engines in the UK. This presents an enormous opportunity for Publishers to utilize this space to engage with a wide audience.
As the social platform becomes more and more widespread it is surprising that some are still dragging their heals when it comes to getting involved and embracing Social Media. The opportunities and coverage are huge not to mention free! Look at one of the biggest publishers – The New York Times. NYT have almost 2.5 million followers on Twitter. They use Twitter as an RSS feed of their website, tweeting updates with the article title and link to the article in full on their website. Timely, straight to the point updates in under 140 characters, published to a massive audience who have all opted in and expressed an interest in what they have to say.
If you are looking to get started with Twitter or simply want to make more of it, here are some great resources to make use of….
Tweetdeck is a desktop application that helps manage and organize your Twitter account. Tweetdeck has a column structure, whereby you can split up your Twitter feed into specific groups, replies, search terms and direct messages. This makes sure you keep in touch with the posts and people that matter most to you.
Take a look at this video clip from John Jantsch at Duct Tape Marketing ‘How to use Tweetdeck’
Twitter Search is a fantastic resource, which can be used to track specific and targeted search terms, topics, brand names, publications or company name that is being discussed on Twitter. With these search terms you can then take the RSS feed for results and add that feed to an RSS reader so you can continue to track specific search results without the need to perform the search query every time.
3. URL shorteners
When using Twitter to post useful links to your followers you may find that the url takes up a large proportion of those 140 characters that are allowed. The solution is a URL shortening tool. There are lots of URL shortening tools to choose from, they take longer URLs and convert them into manageable, shorter links generally under 20 characters – giving you more characters to use for the Tweet. Check out this post on ‘5 Reasons Why URL Shorteners Are Useful’
4. Twitter feed intergration
Mashable recently published a great article ‘20 Resources for Displaying Twitter Updates’. Displaying your Twitter feed on your website is a wonderful way to show visitors real-time news and events. For your inspiration they give examples of 15 websites that have creatively integrated their Twitter feeds, along with five resources on how you can display your own Twitter feed on your site. You may find our recent article useful too all about integrating a Twitter feed to your website to market your digital editions