Twitter Tuesdays #5 More About Hashtags and Columns

So, the last time I did a Twitter Tuesdays post, I got several comments and messages from people, both on the blog and off, who, until then had NO IDEA you could do columns and searches with hashtags. And really, if you’re struggling to learn how to use Twitter, or you’re trying to build a platform and still feel like you’re fumbling in the dark, it is kind of life-changing news.

Keep the comments and questions coming, guys — I really would like to be as helpful as I can in my limited scope here. 🙂

Again, my posts now for the most part presume that you are using TweetDeck (if you’re not using TweetDeck or another app that you like, such as HootSuite, check out my post on why I recommend using something like TweetDeck.

Another question writers (and others who build platforms on Twitter) have is — “How in the heck do you keep up with your stream?”

I follow over 1100 people. I don’t keep up with everything in the stream every day. I do try to browse through the full stream a couple of times a day to look for interesting new things, but it’s definitely the part of Twitter I neglect the most. Once I find the interesting stuff, I use columns, hashtags, and lists to help me keep up with the rest.

Hashtags

I’ve already discussed these a little bit.  A hashtag is a little way of categorizing things on Twitter so that others can find it. One really important thing to know about hashtags, is that if you include one in your tweet, ANYONE who searches that hashtag can see your tweet, even if they’re not (already!) following you. Using hashtags, therefore, can make your tweets that much more visible and powerful (if done correctly!)

For example. I’ve already told you that #wordmongering is one of my very favorite hashtags. I LOOOVE these people, and am thankful everyday for the two awesome people who created it, and got it going. So I have #wordmongering saved as a column in my TweetDeck. I created the column by clicking the little + sign in the upper-left corner. When the search bar popped up, I typed #wordmongering, and then, like magic, I had a whole column filled with #wordmongering tweets!

Now, whenever someone tweets anything with the #wordmongering hashtag, I see it, whether I follow them or not. (And usually, if they like #wordmongering, I follow them!)

This same technique works with any hashtag you see someone tweet. If you see someone in your stream type a hashtag you’re unfamiliar with, but it looks interesting, ASK! Include the hashtag when you ask, too, so you might form a quick connection with someone new. It might look like this:

You: So @personIfollow, what is #wordmongering?

Someone new: Oooh! #wordmongering is a great group of folks who write for 30 minutes at the top of each hour, then post word counts and cheer each other on!

Person you follow: Want to join?

And the next thing you know, you’ve made some new friends and become a bigger part of the Twitter community.

Did you KNOW people CHAT using hashtags?

It’s true. Because of the nature of being able to search using hashtags, oftentimes, people use particular hashtags to create chats. These can be REALLY awesome, because they’re like a huge world-wide conference call in which anyone who adds the hashtag to their tweets can participate! The chats can be a bit harder to find, because they usually run on a schedule, but again, if you’re lost ASK!

So again … take a week (or two, I know it was two weeks — I was writing, which is better than blogging! I logged over 10k new words on Thorns of Decision last week.  Besides — have you SEEN the new covers?) and practice searching for new hashtags, making columns, and interacting with folks. 🙂

For Writers Especially:

Here are a few more hashtags you might like to try. And PLEASE, if you have others that you love, leave them in the comments.

  • #amwriting
  • #writingsprint
  • #myWANA
  • #writechat (On Sunday afternoons, particularly)
  • #FNTWP (Only on Friday evenings, but check it out!)
  • #row80
  • #wip500

A Final Plea …

Once you’ve learned how to harness the power of hashtags, it can be a little tempting to use them gratuitously as a way to get your message across. PLEASE be respectful of hashtag communities and what the “rules” are inside them. DON’T use hashtags to spam. It won’t work, and it will likely get you blocked by people (who might otherwise have liked you and eventually bought your book/product/whatever).  For example — #wordmongering is for people who want to WRITE together. Don’t hit them up with BUYMYBOOKBUYMYBOOKBUYMYBOOK #wordmongering. They won’t.

Besides, if you look around long enough, you’ll find plenty of #hashtags that are fine places to spam er, market … 😉

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About breeanaputtroff

Writer, teacher, chatter, mom, indie, fun-loving, eclectic!

Posted on February 28, 2012, in Blogging, Daily Writing Progress, Dusk Gate, Dusk Gate Book Three, Twitter, Twitter Tuesdays and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. One of these days I WILL make a better effort to try to love Twitter. If I ever get to the place where I do, much of the credit will be going to you. I don’t suppose you have any advice for people who don’t much care for Twitter? I’d like to like it (sounded intelligent, hmm?) but trying to weed through all the spam…I mean marketing…in my stream, trying to find posts I can actually respond to, is very time consuming. Or do you limit interactions with people based on hashtags?

    Keep the instructions coming. You might make a Twitter convert of me yet. 🙂

  2. I do focus most of my “interacting” on Facebook on hashtags I love, and people I have “listed” — more about that next post.

    I honestly don’t use Twitter to “Twitter” — I don’t even really use it to build a platform. I use it to connect with people that I otherwise would never have the opportunity to know — and when I started thinking about it that way, I started enjoying it much, much more.

    Instead of worrying about it, I would suggest really just checking out some hashtags that sound interesting, following along, and contributing. The other stuff will (or won’t!) take care of itself, and you’ll be happier.

  3. I’d never heard about #wordmongering before… thank you! I actually tried the “let’s write at the top of the hour” thing before, and got pitiful replies, but it makes sense, since I wasn’t using the hashtag! LOL. So it just went out into my Twitter stream for everyone to see, writers or not. Going to try this soon. 🙂

  4. Yay Adriana! 🙂 I hope to see you around #wordmongering soon! If you’re wanting to write at the top of the hour and nobody seems to be around, I usually try sending it around to #wordmongering #writingsprint & #amwriting, too. There are a couple of others, and USUALLY you can round up somebody. 🙂

  5. Thank you so much for your #wordmongering support!! Don’t forget if you’re in need of editing support (and quite frankly whos ISN’T these days!) there’s also her sister hashtag #editmongering. There we go from the bottom of the hour to the top of the hour & more often than not you’ll at least have others commiserating with you! LOL Thank you for your awesome support! #wordmongering wouldn’t be as great as it is without writers like you going to it on a regular basis!! I LOVE how productive my Mongerers are!! 😉 Keep up the amazing work! Any word count Mongered is a GOOD word count!!

  6. I would love to see all of your Twitter Tuesdays with links on the side or a page just for them after they have been posted or a page with all of their links. Did that make sense? 😀 I would love for it to be easier to find them. I would also put a link on my page to send people to read your Twitter Tuesdays. Love all of your Twitter info.

    Peace,
    Morgan

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