Twitter can be really confusing to begin with, it’s probably not like any social network you’ll have used before and what’s with all these @ and # signs anyway?
We know that some people get so confused by Twitter when they first start using it, that they’re put off using it again and give up. That’s why we created a Twitter Jargon Buster, to help you get to grips with Twitter and its strange terminology.
Let’s start by finding out what all those symbols and acronyms are first.
Think of it like a phone number, you can’t call someone without it and you can’t tweet someone without adding an @ followed by their Twitter handle.
# – This is a hashtag, they’re a huge part of Twitter. They help to put tweets in a category, for example we might use the hashtag #socialmedia. If you search #socialmedia in the Twitter search bar, any tweets containing #socialmedia will show up. Notice there are no spaces between words when using a hashtag.
#FF – This stands for Follow Friday, so naturally the only time you’re likely to see it is on a Friday. What happens is people will Tweet #FF with a list of Twitter handles that they think other people should follow. From a business point of view this is great for promoting your customers or people you’ve worked with.
RT or Retweet – This is the equivalent of forwarding an email or a text, if you like it, you might decide to share it with your followers.
Sometimes people add ‘Please RT’ to their Tweets if they’ve got a problem or a question, by sharing it with more people the more likely it is that their problem will be solved.
Now you’ve got your head around symbols and acronyms, it’s time to move onto the terminology.
Tweet – Let’s start with the most obvious one, what is a Tweet? A Tweet is a message you can send on Twitter with up to 140 characters.
Followers – These are the people who are following you. They can see Tweets you send, however you cannot see theirs unless you are following them.
Following – These are the people you’re following. You will be able to see their Tweets but they will not be able to see yours unless they’re following you.
Twitter handle – This is Twitter speak for username. For example, ours is @themktingpeople.
Hashtag – A # followed by a word or phase which isn’t broken up by spaces, for example #marketing or #socialmedia. Hashtags are used to help people find things easier. If enough people use the same hashtag it will become a ‘trending topic’ and will be shown on users dashboards.
Trending Topic – If a hashtag is popular enough it will become a trending topic. You can see these on the lower left hand side of your dashboard and you can choose whether you want to see worldwide trending topics, countrywide or trending topics in specific parts of your country. If you click on a trending topic you will be shown all the tweets using that hashtag.
Tailored Topic – Twitter has recently launched tailored topics, you guessed it, they’re trending topics tailored to you based on the things you talk about.
Tailored topics look to be fantastic for social marketing. If you see a tailored topic in your area of work, you could Tweet about it or post some relevant content to increase your reach.
So many questions pop up when it comes to social media, but don’t get stuck, just head over to our social blogs for all the answers you need.
Remember you can find us on facebook, twitter, pinterest and google+ for all our latest social media updates. Or if you feel you may need a little advice with your own social media, whether that’s getting started, or refreshing your knowledge, give us a call on 01543 495752 for a no obligation chat.