Jeff Pulver (@jeffpulver) created this conference. He was a nice guy, and generous enough to give me an ‘I am character’ guest pass. I was secretly pushing to get on a ‘Twitter and music’ panel, but having the guest pass Jeff gave me was rad as it allowed me to gain free access to the conference and all the after parties as well as be featured on the ‘140 characters’ conference page which instantly boosted my follower count on Twitter.
The conference was fun and a great experiment in ‘real-time’ communication. It was interesting to follow the tweets from conference attendees about the action unfolding in front of me. In the end, I gleaned several key takeaways from the conference about Twitter and how to use it, something I like to call ‘Twitter-Cation.’ I’m going to recap some of the highlights in this post and I hope you find them useful. Let’s get started!
What to Tweet
If you tweet, send something that has substance and meaning. For example, if you tweet ‘Eating breakfast,’ this provides no value and is not interesting. I would unfollow a Twitterer sending tweets like that very quickly as would many others….
- A more informative or interesting tweet would read something like ‘Eating breakfast at Canter’s Deli with @hellojoenguyen before a long day at Kodak Theater for the Twitter #140conf’
Using Photos to spice up your Tweets
The conference was sponsored by Kodak, and there were several photography sessions, out of which I concluded the following:
- When you can and whenever possible, it is best to include a photo in your tweet. While you are limited to only 140 text characters, a link to a photo will help elaborate on what you are doing/commenting about, and as the old adage says, ‘a picture’s worth 1000 words’ — which is much more than 140 characters!
- Some of the photography folks at the conference were saying things like, ‘I feel cheap if I don’t include a photo link in a tweet.’ This should give you an idea of how photos are viewed by the Twitterverse – not only is photo inclusion accepted, it is encouraged.
Making sure the content you Tweet is actually good
It often seems tweets are an attempt to drive people to published information on a blog they want to promote or find interesting. However, the quality of the content is the essence of the tweet. You’ll be known for what you send around, so don’t just spam everyone with something that’s ‘kind of cool.’ Make sure it rocks.
Security on Twitter
Be sure to monitor your own tweets. Sometimes people or bots can guess or somehow intercept your password from unsecured apps (i.e. this happened to some celebrities who used ‘TwitPic’ and were compromised because of faulty security measures on their end). If you see sent messages from your account saying something like ‘I just Earned $X from Google’ or similar, chances are you need to change your password to stop this. Make it a point to check your sent items regularly and if you see things you didn’t write or agree to send out, change your password.
There was much more I learned at the conference and I may write a follow-up post. Until then, I hope these pointers help you make the most out of Twitter. Now get to Tweeting!