3 Tips For Making Your Writing More Concise ...

What is Twitter and why does it keep following me around?

Twitter Explained

Twitter is a social networking and microblogging service that allows you answer the question, "What are you doing?" by sending short text messages 140 characters in length, called "tweets", to your friends, or "followers."

The short format of the tweet is a defining characteristic of the service, allowing informal collaboration and quick information sharing that provides relief from rising email and IM fatigue. Twittering is also a less gated method of communication: you can share information with people that you wouldn't normally exchange email or IM messages with, opening up your circle of contacts to an ever-growing community of like-minded people.

You can send your messages using the Twitter website directly, as a single SMS alert, or via a third-party application such as Twirl, Snitter, or the Twitterfox add-on for Firefox. (See below for links to Twitter tools and applications.)

Your tweets are displayed on your profile page, on the home page of each of your followers, and in the Twitter public timeline (unless you disable this in your account settings.)

You can receive tweets by visiting the Twitter website, IM, SMS, RSS, email or via a third-party application.

For more information about what Twitter is all about, see:

Why Twitter is Useful

Twitter has many uses for both personal and business use. It's a great way to keep in touch with your friends and quickly broadcast information about where you are and what you're up to. For example, "I'm downtown and aching for some sushi. Anyone like to join me?"

For business, Twitter can be used to broadcast your company's latest news and blog posts, interact with your customers, or to enable easy internal collaboration and group communication.

To learn more about how you can make use of Twitter, see:

How to Use Twitter

Getting Started

Visit the Twitter website and click "Join for free" to create your account. Consider using your real name as your user name to help your friends find you more easily.

Once your account is created, login and click "Settings." From here, you can setup your account details, manage your password, register your mobile phone and IM account, configure how you receive Notices, upload your photo and customize your account's design.

Your Twitter page is located at twitter.com/your-username

Sending Messages

You can "tweet" from your Twitter page, your mobile phone, IM account, or via a third-party Twitter client.

  • From your Twitter page: S imply enter a message in the text field at the top of the page and click "Update."
  • From your mobile phone: Send an SMS message to 40404.
  • From your IM account: Send a message to either twitter@twitter.com (Jabber/GTalk) or TwitterIM (AOL).

Your tweet will be displayed to your followers, either on their Twitter page, mobile phone, or any other way they are setup to receive Twitter updates.

Following Other Twitter Users

Finding and adding friends to your "Twitterverse" is easy.

  • From the Twitter website: Login to your account, visit your friends' Twitter pages and click "Follow" underneath their photo. If your friend's account is public, you will immediately start seeing their tweets on your page, otherwise your friend will need to approve you before you can see their updates.
  • From your mobile phone or IM account: Send the command follow username.

See the Twitter website for a complete reference of Twitter Commands.

@Replies and Direct Messages

When you send a message with @username at the beginning, it's understood that your message is intended for that specific user, but all your followers can still see the tweet. Note that for the intended recipient to see your message on their home page, they must be following you, otherwise they will only see your message on the Replies tab.

To send a friend a private tweet, use the Direct command: d username message.

Learn more about using Twitter:

How to Network with Twitter

The following blog posts are aimed at bloggers and other professionals who would like to use Twitter for business.

Twitter In The News

Twitter Tools

Subscribe to the Twitter Tools RSS feed and get notified of the latest tools added to tweeternet.

To suggest a tool, app or resource just add me to your del.icio.us network and share the link!

More Places to Find Twitter Tools

The easiest way to educate your site visitors and clients about Twitter?
Link to this page!

Tweet me with feedback and suggestions for improvement. I want tweeternet.com to be clear, concise, and accurate.

Follow Sam Stevens The original creator of Tweeternet

tweeternet.com is not affiliated with Twitter, LLC.

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3 Tips For Making Your Writing More Concise

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When writing for an online audience, be it on Twitter or other social platforms, one thing you should be aiming for with your content is brevity. The more concise you can be with the content you’re creating, the easier it will be for people to read, interact with, and remember. However, writing in a concise manner is something that many people struggle with, especially if you feel like you are always trying to sell all of the benefits of something in order to close a sale.

Luckily, there are a few tricks that you can try to help make your writing more on the brief yet impactful side. To help you see how this can be done, here are three tips for making your writing more concise. 

Write In A Straightforward Fashion

One thing that can make all writing longer and more meandering is when you’re not straightforward. If you’re trying to hide something or convince people of a specific point, you’ll often find that you add more and more words to help you do this. But if you’re wanting to be concise, what you should really be focusing on is the most important words or facts that will create the greatest impact for your reader. 

Especially when it comes to things like Twitter or other short-form content, what you want to do is give your audience enough so that they are interested in going to your website or other content that can expound more on a concept. But for the sake of being concise, you’ll want to be as straightforward as possible

Switch Out Phrase For Words

Something else that can make your content more rambling is when you take the long way to get to a point that could have been made in fewer words. 

To see if this is something that you can improve upon in your writing, try to uncover where you’re using phrases that could easily be switched out for just a word. For example, rather than saying that someone “gave an assessment” of something, you can say that they “assessed” something. This can help to cut down on a lot of bloat in the content you write. 

Edit Like A Journalist

Professional writers have to do a lot of editing. Especially if they are a journalist, their writing needs to be formatted in such a way that the most important content is shared first and given priority. Then, as the piece goes on, the less important details can be added. So if you’re wanting to make your writing more concise, think about yourself as if you were a journalist needing to give the most important information first and removing any words or phrases that don’t immediately add to what you’re trying to create. 

If you’re looking to make your writing more concise, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you see how this can be done.

3 Tips For Recognizing Trolls Online

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While there are plenty of things to appreciate about the Internet and social media, there are also things about these platforms that can be very disruptive. One of the biggest things that can cause people and business stress online is trolls. 

If you’re unfamiliar with what an Internet troll is, it’s someone who interacts with people or businesses online in the hopes of getting a rise out of them. Unfortunately, it can sometimes be hard to identify when someone is a troll and when someone is just being mean. So to better help you in making this distinction, especially for those who may be older and may not have a lot of experience on social media due to accessibility in assisted living facilities and other such places, here are three tips for recognizing trolls online. 

They Don’t Seem Like A Real Person

While some real people who have real accounts on social media platforms will act like trolls, the more malicious online trolls tend to really try to hide themselves from the people that they’re trying to interact with.

One way that they do this is by creating social media accounts and profiles that don’t show who they really are. So if you see an extremely rude or incendiary comment from someone online, before you respond, take a look at their profile to see if they appear to be a real person. Some signs that they aren’t is that they don’t use their name in their username or that they don’t have a real picture attached to their profile.

They Comment On Everything

Another sign that you’re dealing with a troll online is if they seem to be commenting on everything that’s being posted online. This could include posting on all kinds of posts by other people or replying to multiple comments on the same post.

Usually, if someone feels impressed to comment on something online, they’ll share their opinion and then move on with their lives. But if someone is trying to troll people, they won’t allow any exchange to stop until they feel like they’ve gotten the reaction they wanted from the people they were interacting with—and these interactions usually devolve rather quickly. 

They Attack People Personally

When someone is trying to troll people, they will usually go straight for the jugular, meaning that they will resort to all kinds of name-calling, assumption-making, and personal attacks. And while these things can be jarring to read from a perfect stranger online, try to keep in mind that this person isn’t actually making a judgment call about you. Rather, they are just trying to get attention for themselves and rile people up. 

If you’ve had some uncomfortable interactions with people online, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you sniff out the trolls from the genuine users of social media platforms.

Twitter for Seniors: An Easy Guide

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Twitter can be an overwhelming place for anyone, but more so for a senior. There’s a lot of noise from a lot of people talking all at once. Yet if you take the time to learn how to use it, Twitter can be a great social media platform to be a part of. Here’s how to get started with Twitter and make the most of its features.

Creating an Account

The first step is to create a Twitter account. You can do this by going to twitter.com and clicking on the “Sign Up” button.

Enter your full name, email address, and chosen password. Your password needs to be strong. This means that even if you choose to use the name of your assisted living facility because you’ll remember it, add some numbers and punctuation marks for good measure.

You’ll also need to choose a username, which is what people will use to mention or reply to you. Keep it simple and easy to remember.

Once you’ve entered all the necessary information, click “Sign up.” Twitter will send a confirmation email to the address you provided. Click on the link in that email to confirm your account and start using Twitter.

Navigating the Interface

The next step is to familiarize yourself with Twitter’s interface. The main way you’ll interact with Twitter is through your timeline, which is where you’ll see all the tweets from the people you follow. 

You can also compose new tweets by clicking on the “Tweet” button. This will open up a new box where you can enter your tweet. Once you’re happy with your tweet, click “Tweet.” Your tweet will now appear in your timeline and be visible to your followers.

If you want to see what other people are tweeting about, click on the “Explore” tab. Here, you’ll find trending topics and hashtags that you can follow. Hashtags are a way of categorizing tweets and make it easy to find tweets about specific topics. 

The “Notifications” tab is where you’ll see any mentions or replies to your tweets. Mentions are when someone includes your username in a tweet. Replies are when someone responds directly to one of your tweets. 

The “Messages” tab is where you can send direct messages to other Twitter users. Direct messages are private and can only be seen by the sender and recipient. To start a new direct message, click on the “New Message” button and enter the username of the person you want to message.

Finding People to Follow

One of the great things about Twitter is that you can follow anyone you want. To find people to follow, click on the “Search” button in the top navigation bar.

From here, you can search for specific people by their name or username. When you find someone you want to follow, click on the “Follow” button beneath their profile picture.

Now that you know the basics of how to use Twitter, you’re ready to start tweeting! Now you can connect with friends and family, stay up-to-date on current events, and even follow your favorite celebrities.

Creating A Marketing Plan For Your Security Business

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Most people would prefer to avoid having to deal with crime. Even the most skilled theft defense lawyer in Boulder, or anywhere else, would enjoy some time not having to deal with the law, so if you’ve got a budding security business, you should have no shortage of potential clients for your services. The question is, how can you get your brand in front of their eyes? 

How do you make them aware of your business and start bringing in those sales? How do you keep them coming back for repeat business? It all starts with a clever marketing plan, and for a security company, there are definitely some particulars you’ll need to be aware of.

First, let’s talk about branding. Every business needs a look—their logo, their emblems, a visual aesthetic that you display to the public and potential clients. For a security company, your visuals should project strength, all while remaining distinctive, memorable, and clear.

Start by having a designer craft your logo and associated elements, and when you’ve reached something suitable, you can start updating your marketing materials and social profiles to match that aesthetic. This is just the tip of the iceberg, though, because now you’re going to have to start coordinating your marketing collateral across all of your digital channels.

At minimum, your business should have a good website and few strong social media profiles. Much of what you do, in marketing, is getting people to check out the former so that they can see what you’re about and start buying your goods and services. They won’t want to stick around if your website is substandard, however, so make sure yours has at least the following:

  • About Us—This is where you talk about the history of your business, your ethos, your goals, and everything else that makes your company a relatable entity.
  • Services and Resources—Use this as the opportunity to show what it is that you offer and how your offerings differ from those of your competitors.
  • Testimonials and Referrals—Hopefully, you’ve left a trail of happy customers in your wake. Use this section of your website to feature their tales, and provide some “social proof” that you are a credible, competent, and trustworthy business.
  • Blog—A critical part of your content marketing strategy, your blog should establish you as an expert in your field while simultaneously serving as a draw for potential clients to visit your site. You can even use it to send out company info, news, etc.
  • Contact Us—Of course, all of your efforts would be for naught if your clients couldn’t reach out to you. Be sure to include contact details so you can start making deals.

As for your social media profiles, you should stick to a few best practices on those as well. Use social media to connect with prospective customers in real-time, while also helping your company stand out and driving as many as possible to your website. It won’t all come together overnight, but with consistent effort, you can execute on a marketing plan that truly works.

3 Tips For Keeping Your Kids Safe While Using Social Media

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In today’s society, you almost can’t keep your kids and teens from wanting to be a part of social media. But while this is a part of life now, this is also a part of life that could be very harmful to your young children if you’re both not careful with how it’s used. Luckily, there are things you can do and teach to your children to help keep them safe as they learn how to use social media and integrate it into their young lives.

To help you see how this can be done, here are three tips for keeping your kids safe while using social media

Share Your Concerns With Your Kids

While you are likely thinking about all the potential negatives that could come into your children’s lives by using social media, your child is likely thinking about all the positive possibilities they could now have with a social media profile. The trick here is to give your kids a bit of a reality check before you allow them to use these platforms.

To do this, talk with your kids about exactly what you’re nervous about with having them on social media. Share with them what they need to be careful with, what they need to be on the lookout for, and what some of the threats to them could potentially be. Hopefully with this knowledge, your child or teen will be more careful when they spend time on social media and will come to you when something appears amiss. 

Set Up Accounts Properly

Once you feel like your child should be allowed to spend time on social media, you should help them in setting up their profile so that all of the applicable safety settings are applied. 

For most social media platforms, you can set settings that make it so only the people they are friends with can speak with them or see their content. You can also help them with creating a strong password. Teach them the importance of a strong password and that they should only share the password with you so as to keep their account safe. 

Keep Time On Social Media Limited

While some kids will be mature enough to safely use social media, most kids, and even most adults, can easily get sucked into what they’re doing on social media and spend too much time on these platforms.

To keep this from happening to your kids, try your best to keep their time on social media, and screens, in general, limited. You can help to teach them this by setting a good example yourself. One good rule of thumb to follow could be not allowing them to use social media in their bedrooms as night before they go to sleep. 

If your kids or teens are wanting to get onto social media, consider using the tips mentioned above to help them stay safe on these platforms.