Ready to Use Twitter to Market Your Business? Before You Start, Learn the Terminology

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twitterReady to Tweet, but don’t know the lingo? We at iScream have identified the terms you’ll need to know to successfully use Twitter to market your business. Read on!

Helpful Terminology

  • Tweet. An update posted through Twitter. It must be 140-characters or less, and can include multimedia links, hashtags, usernames and more.
  • Timeline. The Twitter timeline is the real-time feed of all of the tweets from those you follow.
  • Trending. The most-tweeted topics on Twitter at a time. They appear in the right-hand sidebar of the New Twitter profile. Trends are “Worldwide” by default, but can be narrowed down to certain geographic location to determine what is being discussed by different groups of Twitter users. Trends are based on a number of factors, including the amount of tweets and retweets as well as the volume of current tweets compared to the past. Trends can be hashtags, keywords, proper names or current events — just about anything.
  • Retweet. Abbreviated as RT. A retweet shows that you are repeating something that was originally posted by another user. The format is RT @username, where username is the Twitter name of the person you are retweeting.
  • @Reply. The @reply is a tweet directed to another user in reply to an update. An @reply is saved in the user’s “Replies” tab. Replies are sent either by clicking the ‘reply’ icon next to an update or typing @username message (e.g., @user I saw that article too!).
  • DM. Short for direct message. Direct Messaging allows you to send a private message to a person you are following. The user you want to send a direct message to must be following you.
  • @Mention. Contained somewhere in the body of a tweet, an @mention includes a specific user in a tweet. When you include a Twitter username after the “@” sign in a tweet, that user will see that tweet in their timeline. Multiple users can be mentioned in a single tweet, just make sure they all have the “@” sign before their username.
  • List. Lists are curated groups of Twitter users. They are created by users to organize timelines, to group people within a specific industry, to indicate the topic that certain users tend to tweet about the most, or any pretty much any reason. Lists that you have created or chosen to follow appear under the dropdown “Lists” menu directly above your timeline.
  • #Hashtag. A hashtag is a way of organizing your updates. Adding a #hashtag to a message helps others to discover relevant posts. The most-talked-about hashtags are located in the Trends sidebar.
  • Follower. Followers are users who chose to follow your account. They’ll receive all of your public tweets in their timeline. The number of followers listed on your profile is the number of people who are receiving your tweets.
  • Following. The people who you are following on Twitter. You will receive all of their public tweets in your timeline. The number of people you are following listed on your Twitter profile is the number of people whose tweets you receive.
  • Follow Friday (#ff or #followfriday). FollowFriday is used to call attention to a user’s favorite followers and favorite people on Twitter. When you tweet a FF message, you recommend that your followers also check out the people you mention in your post.
  • Unfollow. To stop following a Twitter user. His or her tweets will no longer show up in your timeline.

Now that you know the lingo, get out there, Tweet your followers and successfully promote your business on Twitter!