Thursday, May 19, 2011

Social Networking Tip

When it comes to Twitter, one of the most powerful tools is the hashtag, or number sign, for those not familiar with Twitter. In other words: #

If you really want to use Twitter to connect with others, don't be afraid of the hashtag. It's not something that's written down somewhere, it's something you create. For example, let's say you want to take a poll to see which title might be strongest for your next book. Instead of simply polling your followers, poll all of Twitter. By allowing others to retweet and adding a hashtag, like #Fausttitle, you'll be able to see the chain of anyone who has an opinion on the title, even if they don't use your name in the Tweet.


Jessica

17 comments:

Laura M. Campbell said...

I admit the hash tag is strange and unknown to me. i see people using it on Twitter. I just can't seem to completely understand how to use it correctly. I've read the Help section on Twitter and your post. I'm a bit slow when it comes to technology sometimes. A "See Jane Run" explanation would work best for me. One of these days...

Victoria said...

I'm nervous of it too. I try to get to hashtag convos, but end up losing track of them. I suppose what would be wise is to experiment a bit by creating one. I think I'll try that.

Learning anything is difficult at first, but I have to say Twitter is not as user-friendly as FaceBook, if much more so than MySpace.

Brenda said...

I used it for the first time yesterday. However, like Laura, I don't completely understand how to use it correctly.

Kate Douglas said...

One thing I did figure out is that if you want to follow a hashtag conversation, you can just click on the tagged word (at least in "TweetDeck" -- the viewing format I use) and all the comments w/that tag will show up in a separate column.

But like you, Laura, the learning curve appears to be beyond me. I do try and go on daily and at least check and see what's being said, but I've decided my problem is that I really DON'T CARE about most of the drivel I see. I've barely got enough hours in the day as it is.

Marian Pearson Stevens said...

I've been curious about the hash tag but didn't know how to keep up with it. Thanks for bringing it up Jessica -- good way to follow a thread.

Kate-do you think TweetDeck makes the whole Twitter deal easier?
I'm try to keep in touch, current, but little time.

Laila Knight said...

All these tips are great. I have to sit down and douse myself in Twitter one of these days. I glanced at it once. That was enough to put me off a bit, but I'll catch on when I set my mind to it. It seems like there are too many steps to take to get a point accross. Blogs are so simple, so is FB.

Stephanie McGee said...

I will admit this is something I've never even thought about. I've been using Twitter for a long while now. Hashtags are among the best features, especially for authors. Thanks for the new idea!

Marian, a third-party client for Twitter is definitely a good idea. The great part about Tweetdeck (and I think HootSuite has similar functionality) is that you can sort it into columns, based on anything from core features such as direct messages to any hashtag you want.

Great way to keep up on the conversations important to you, such as #YAlitchat or #askagent

Sharla Lovelace said...

I use hashtags quite a bit, for productive reasons and for fun. I use TD too and I like using them for search columns...but I've never done what you just mentioned. And I'm a little befuddled by it. I do the basic usage but there are probably many more productive uses for hashtags I don't know about! LOL

That would be a good post...in depth use of hashtags and their redeeming qualities!!

Megan said...

A while back, Nathan Bransford had a good post on his blog about social media. The main idea was to use what you like, or do well. I've branched out and created a facebook page, and I just tweet from there. Mostly because I can't figure out how to say anything in 140 characters. Which is to say, I don't really know what I'm doing! But I'm enjoying connecting with so many different people, which is the real purpose.

Marian Pearson Stevens said...

Thanks for the input, Stephanie! I'm going to check out TweetDeck. Learning more about the hash tags sounds worthwhile.

Kurt Hartwig said...

To give yourself a quick and easy tutorial on hashtags, click on some of the hashtags from the "Trends" on the right sidebar. You'll see pretty quickly how other people are using them.

Bryce Daniels said...

I just joined Twitter and have to admit that I am still in a fog. Of course, I am renowned within my own family for asking what a "Wii" was a few years ago. Sigh.

The help link at the bottom of the main page was, indeed, helpful. But I still find myself just watching what others are doing. A real internet wallflower.

Need to get in gear, but Twitter sometimes seems another way to sap time. I understand its importance, though.

Now I just need a few extra hours a week. Anyone know where I can find some?

Michael Seese said...

@ Bryce Daniels

"Now I just need a few extra hours a week. Anyone know where I can find some?"

Stop sleeping. That's what I do.

Trisha said...

I need to get used to hashtags...and everything else about Twitter! hehe

Kay Theodoratus said...

It's a great idea ... provided you can remember to post the hash before you share.

Melissa Crandall said...

What a relief to discover that I'm not the only one confused by Twitter!

Alaina said...

Wow, thank you. :-) I am trying to get the hang of twitter. Sadly, I am still working on it. But getting there!