A few weeks ago I posted a question on LinkedIn to see how creative people were using Twitter.
Do You Have Any Unusual Ways to Use Twitter?
I have been tweeting excerpts from my book for the last two weeks and am only through Chapter 3 so far. Many people seem to be retweeting my quotes, and some of these people now follow me, so I am pleased.
How do you use this micro blog? Any great stories of Twitter use will be used in my blog on design and marketing, so please let me know if I can use your story and give me a link to your Twitter account and / or blog if applicable, so I can link to you from my blog.
Here are some of the best answers. I am reproducing the responses of only those people who gave me a Twitter address, and those who gave helpful, unusual answers, or useful links. There is no order in the following; nor have I rated the answers. Enjoy and tweet on!
* note by author:
Since posting this article, I have received additional input, and have opened up the comment section below to allow other people to post their creative uses of Twitter. A new article will be generated from these posts. I expect a lot of hits again, so please include your Twitter handle and one other link in your comment. Too many links get put in spam.
Many people view this article, so your links will be followed! Please submit any creative use of Twitter that you have or know of, include your Twitter account: I will follow the best, most creative Tweeters.
I also have a newsletter on creativity and self-development at: http://parallelmind.wordpress.com
I find Twitter to be compelling for many reasons. To answer your question about unusual ways to use Twitter…well, everything about Twitter is unusual. It is a new communication channel, that has more potential impact than email. From my tweets, I am picking up people with special interests that I don’t even know. Now that’s amazing…connecting, marketing and influencing a rapidly growing group of people of common interest to ‘me’, that are ‘following’ my assorted rantings, thoughts, promotions, recommendations and useful information.
One thought, as a reader of web content, make it easy to link to your Twitter account from ANYWHERE you have content. Please respond in the moment. Make it easy for them to retweet, follow you, check out your bio, website and other things that you care about. Make all of this personal.
I am using Twitter to help others get to know the REAL me. It is actually scary to be transparent to everyone that chooses to follow. Ok, so being real to strangers isn’t so bad, even if it is uncomfortable some times to be vulnerable to others. See, look how I’m bearing myself to you. It’s getting easier and people discern ‘real’. Perhaps what Twitter is doing for us is creating personal brand and trust, building corporate brand by building communities of interest.
I have just started using Twitter in the past week as I beging the networking process. The people I have met have been extremely helpful in getting started. I have found that actually putting a question out is successful in not only addressing your needs, but in meeting new people and increasing your opportunity for people to see your work.
Evelyn McCorristin Peters
I use twitter to advertise my latest blog posts, note presentations I give across the US, find useful tools and trends that I see. It is great for marketing and getting the word out there as well as finding people tweeting about the same things to see what they have to say about common interests. I use shortened URLs to send links of interesting websites.
Henrik De Gyor
I have just posted a blog on this subject:
I have an account on twitter: myhairtalking – I have 100 followers within a few weeks. It is from my hair’s point of view. I write jokes, hair advice, I’m hoping to get a book. I also have myhairtalking.tumblr.com
I’d love people to come see me there. You can say and show a lot more on tumblr, but I’m just getting started.
I frequently write about Twitter at my Examiner.com
Phyllis Zimbler Miller
I just followed you, Aliyah.
I tweet news on children’s books, mainly reviews.
You should check out the Twitter Mania Manual:
Download the Word document and just read it through.
If you ask “How do you use Twitter?” it’s like asking “How do you talk to other people?” The answer is: There are so many different ways but it all boils down to: be helpful, engage, be informative, and you may even be funny.
I particularly like quotes http://bit.ly/myquotes
I avoided the use of Twitter for a long time as just another social media time waster – until I began getting emails in regards to a friend/design industry peer tweeting about the fact I wasn’t using Twitter. For a little over a year now, I have used Twitter to promote my books, speaking engagements, competition judging, published articles, and drive people to my blogs where they can learn much more about my design work. Twitter has also been used to inform others in my industry about related news-worthy topics, educational/conference opportunities, book submission and design competitions, and much more. I’ve also found Twitter to be incredibly valuable in promoting the creative efforts, books, and causes of friends/peers in design-related professions.
Jeff Fisher | Engineer of Creative Identity | Jeff Fisher LogoMotives
I have been only using tweeter since August. I post mainly links i find interesting on social media, design, jobs, fashion, and everything else that catches my attention. I am using it because I wanted to give it a second try; i had created an account on the past but found it to time consuming. Today I have a different opinion.
This second time I started to follow much more people than i actually do now, but soon realized that it was just to much info at the same time for me to read and manage.
Meanwhile i am trying tweetdeck which i found that helps a lot managing your tweets, but again still pretty new…
Took a look on your tweets and i am following you know…here is mine, perhaps you are curious about it.
Even if it’s OT: Don’t tweet auto updates from Massive Multiplayer Online Games (MMOG). I’ve tried it yesterday and lost 3% followers within a day. The next step is a security debate about third party authentication. Don’t do it!
I use twitter to keep friends/followers updated on my life, my creativity, my work, designs, inspiration, dreams, poetry, & articles i find interesting…. I use it so people can get a sense of personality as well 🙂 Thank you for your tweets… I’ve just added you…please add me:
Create a customer-attracting twitter contest
One thing I think a lot of people miss with Twitter is conversation! Most people are savvy to self-promotion, and if all you post are info about yourself and your work, you’ll find limited, if any, success on Twitter (or MySpace or Facebook).
While I do post about my Christmas station and my record label, I also talk to people who I’m following (and who are following me). The instant interaction is what really makes Twitter tick.
Anyway, there’s my two cents.
Twitter became my personal online daily pinboard full of interesting messages and activities of my own community (my followers). Before Twitter I checked so many blogs and sites to check out the newest stuff and innovation gadgets, interesting articles what so ever. Besides checking the messages of my personal pinboard, I use my online personal pinboard (twitter.com/mdenekamp) to post my own messages. My tweets gives me retweets and followers so my personal network is growing and also my personal online pinboard.
I don’t know that I’m doing anything particularly unusual with Twitter, though I do fall into Erica’s camp. Twitter isn’t a publishing tool, but instead a venue for two-way communication.
My main Twitter strategy is to serve as a resource on topics in my field of interest. (Web, design, marketing, social media, higher ed, science.) I do this by sharing links to interesting blog posts, answering questions, asking questions, jumping into conversations, reTweeting relevant posts and participating in Twitter real-time chats. The important thing about this strategy is that the information isn’t all my own. While I will Tweet various thoughts, opinions and links to my own blog posts, most content comes from elsewhere. Thus I function more as an editor than a writer.
This makes me a more valuable resource than if I was only sharing my own content, and thus Tweeps with an interest in my topics will follow me. To show my human side I also post random bits of fluff such as amusing videos, what I’m doing this weekend, etc.
As I mentioned above, Twitter Chats are extremely useful. I’ve found they are a great way to share ideas on topics such as blogging and social media. I participate semi-regularly in about 3 of them. I also have a blog post that explains more about these.
I have a number of Twitter accounts and I use each for different purposes. My main account is VizCab, where I post about design. I’ll often use Twitter in conjunction with my Posterous blog. For example, I ran posts on Twitter and LinkedIn asking for input on my business card design which I uploaded on Posterous.
I was able to get around 1,000+ views and dozens of comments that were sprinkled between Posterous and LinkedIn. Using crowd-sourcing, I was able to see where parts of my initial design were confusing to people. I got a lot of good feedback (and some bad). I also got a lead on a better vendor to print my cards.
The Twitter community gives me a lot of fodder for my blog on information design at michaelrowley.posterous.com
I’m happy to share this story with you.
Among the creative ways I’ve used Twitter:
* Follow people who provide links to subjects I’m researching
* Use my contacts to gain blurbs for my new book, speaking gigs, and client leads
* Use an ongoing search to add comments that sell my book and broaden my audience
* Be interviewed by a journalist in open Q&A, though I found this a rather frustrating format
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