Twitter 101 for Academics

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  • Twitter 101: Getting Started

    Melissa De Witte @melissadewitte @UCSCSocSci


    This presentation was delivered to UC Santa Cruz students, faculty and staff on April 23, 2015 as part of the Digital Humanities event series

  • Today were going to

    Define terms

    Set up your Twitter Profile to include: a Photo & a bio

    Send two Tweets


  • If we have time, Id like to

    Talk through who to follow

    Managing your followers and newsfeed

    Discuss etiquette and best practices


  • Glossary

    A Tweet: A Tweet is a message sent on Twitter that is 140 characters or less. A Retweet: A Retweet (RT) is when a Tweet is repeated by another user. A Modified Tweet: A Modified Tweet (MT) is a RT that is usually shortened for length and a comment Reply: A reply is when someone responds to your Tweet that will show up in their timeline. Mention: A mention is when someone features your @username in their Tweet A Direct Message: A direct message (DM) is a feature only available when users both follow each other Favorites: A favorite is a way to bookmark a Tweet you can easily find it later.Hashtags: A hashtag is a keyword phrase. It ties conversations from different users together in one stream. It is marked by the # sign in front of a word (or words not separated by commas or numbers). Using a hashtag makes your content searchable. Many events can have a unique hashtag to follow and participate in. Like this workshop: #UCSCtweets


    Find a username (also called a handle). If you are an affiliation from a larger organization, take a look to browse

    naming conventions. If you are an individual, pick your name carefully. Do you go by Jon Smith, Jonathan Smith, Jon R Smith, Jonathan R Smith? Think about how you want to be recognized. What is your website URL (if you have a website?). Consider choosing a Twitter handle to mirror your web presence.


  • Welcome Messages


    You will see a welcome screen that will encourage you to browse the platforms and follow people


  • Welcome Messages

    Twitter will try to get you to sign up for accounts. Skip this simply by typing in into your browser to exit.


  • Confirm your Email Address

    Dont forget to confirm your Email address! You will see more steps encouraging you to follow people - well get to my advice about that later. Because your profile isnt set up yet I dont encourage you to start following people with an empty page!


  • Upload a Photo


    Do: keep your picture big (Twitter resizes it when you click on the photo). !Do keep your picture big within Twitters maximum size (700KB). !Do be creative and current with your photo. !! #UCSCtweets

  • Edit your Profile


  • Adding information


  • Almost there!


  • Getting started: write a stellar About sentence/ summary


    Do: use hashtags with your keywords! Hashtags become searchable links !

    Do: link to your affiliations !Do: link to your website or UCSC profile page if you dont have one

    Do: show your personality through an interest or hobby

    Do: Have a user pic!


  • How To Tweet

    Type your Tweet into the box at the top of your Home timeline, or click the Tweet Icon in the top navigation bar.

    You have 140 characters. Twitter counts the characters for you.

    Twitter chose 140 characters based on the idea that a text

    message is 160.


  • Twitter Basics If you start a tweet with @username, it will not appear in your followers newsfeed. It

    will appear in only two places: @username will see it & on your own timeline. If you are wanting your followers to see the person, start with a period:


    When Retweeting, either include your own comment or click the retweet icon so you do not end up accidentally spamming your followers newsfeed with repetitive content. !


    If you are sharing content that is not yours, always cite where the article came from. Include via @theperson who originally Tweeted it and/or @thepublication that it came from.


  • Tweeting Tips: What to Tweet?

    Think of 3 or 4 specialties/ research topics you want to be known for. Retweet or tweet topical articles you find and discover through your newsfeed and elsewhere related to that topic.

    Share thoughts and ideas related to your specialties/ research topics.

    Ask questions related to your specialties/ research topics or a short discussion question youd like to engage with online.

    Alert followers about the next event you are speaking at or attending. Find out if there is a hashtag and reach out over Twitter to the speakers.

    Take advantage of hashtags, defined by a # (pound, number sign) that are keywords for your target audience (well talk about this in more detail later).


  • Examples of what to Tweet and Retweet

    Tips Tweet original sentences and phrases (a sound bite) from your own research, !! Tip: Share current news and research

    related to your specialty/ field of interest.


  • Thoughts When Tweeting, I ask myself the following


    Would I want to read this?

    Would I click this?

    Would I Retweet this?

    If the answer is NO Dont Tweet it!


  • Using a hashtag

    A hashtag is a keyword phrase. It ties conversations from different users together in one stream. It is marked by the # sign in front of a word (or words not separated by commas or numbers). Also, using a hashtag makes your content searchable. Special Events can have a unique hashtag to follow and participate in.


  • This Event Has a Hashtag!


  • Using a Hashtag at an event A hashtag is a great way to comment.

    example: Who else think Melissa De Witte is a terrible presenter? #ucsctweets

    A hashtag presents networking opportunities.example: Anyone want to grab a coffee after this? I totally need caffeine! #ucsctweets

    A hashtag can be a catalyst to share storiesHow #ucsctweets transformed me from a novice to networker:


  • Hashtags: a real world example

    #UCSC50 - the designated tag for Alumni Weekend & the 50th anniversary exercise: Using the hashtag #UCSC50, send out a Tweet of the alumni weekend event you are attending or your department/division is hosting.


  • #UCSC50 examples:

    I want to bring back the quarry! Cant wait to find out how at #UCSC50.Which teach-in at #UCSC50 should I go to? Bettina Aptheker or Craig Haney? #toughdecisionsWondering who else I will see at the Econ Alumni Reception this Saturday #UCSC50

    Over alumni weekend, put your new Twitter skills to use and join the conversation. See what others are sharing:

  • Other important things to consider as you get started


  • Managing your Feed

    Think about creating lists to organize who you follow (more information on how to do that in the next few slides. !

    Also use other users lists to find people to follow !

    Use technology to help! Consider a platform like Tweetdeck, Hootsuit or Buffer to schedule Tweets and manage multiple lists/ accounts at once.


  • Who to Follow

    Where you work!

    Departments and Divisions you are involved with !

    Look for peers in your field!

    Search for people you admire and respect: people you know and dont know from the academic, political, cultural spheres.!

    Find the industry publications and academic journals you read and contribute to.


  • Find People to Follow

    Find related organizations. For example, when I created the Twitter account for the Blum Center, I looked to see if other Blum Centers at other UC campuses had a presence.


  • Tip: Discover who your Friends follow


  • Your News Feed

    Once you have followed a few people, you will notice your news feed is lively with idea, information and content


  • Manage your Newsfeed With Lists

    Hover over the wheel next to follow/ following button. You do not need to follow someone to add them to a list.

    Create a list that speaks to you and you interests. For example, I added UCSC IHR to my UCSC Tweeting list.


  • Examples of Lists


  • Need Inspiration? See how other academics are using Twitter. Ive

    created three lists you might find of interest.Academics Tweeting, UCSC Academics Tweeting and UC Academics Tweeting:

    Read social media blogs and websites like Mashable and Social Media Club.


  • THANK YOU! !

    Email and Tweet me your questions, videos of cats, whatever!


    Melissa De Witte @melissadewitte @UCSCSocSci