Do you use Twitter? I have been spending a lot more time on Twitter lately. I know what you’re thinking …. “gee, I wish that I had so much time to spare!” Hear me. Twitter was at first a scary and useless time sink. I signed up, but my account remained dormant for months before finally getting the motivation to check it again. It can be a great way to connect with people if you know how. Here’s how I use Twitter

  • Connect with people you already know -by carrotcreative via Twitter I don’t use chat client at all so Twitter has been a pseudo chat?platform to me to connect with other project mangers I know in small snippets. Several Twitter conversations have resulted in “I’ll send your an email” and “Give me call and let’s talk about this more.”
  • Connect with new people – There are many people you wouldn’t have met otherwise. Twitter has a “find people” function that allows you to find others who are interested in the same interests as you. I found people this way and they found me.
  • Sharing links to useful articles and resources – One my favorite things to do on Twitter is to share and receive links to interesting things. URL shortener tools are available for free that allow you to add very short hyperlinks to your tweets. This allows you to add something new or provide a summary of your links. I follow several project management bloggers that I believe are great. I share new posts from these people with my followers. TweetLater is a tool that automates this process. However, it allows me to post only once a week and only links to reputable sources. ?I have started to use my Twitter stream as a feed reader since these blogs are the ones that I want to read. I simply check what I’ve tweeted and use it as my daily reading list.
  • Re-Tweet: I will re-tweet any tweet I find particularly interesting. It’s as simple as adding a “RT” to the tweet and copy/pasting the text. Then, you can re-send it to your followers. If they are good, there is a way for them to go viral.
  • Follow Friday – This is a little tradition that someone started and became viral. I use the #followfriday tag to identify the usernames of people who have made useful contributions to Twitter. This tells everyone who follows me that these people are worth following. It’s like an organic referral network.
  • Clients – I sometimes use but I mostly use Seesmic Desktop, a desktop client. Another popular desktop client is TweetDeck. The desktop clients make it easier for you to filter and search, block spammers, and more.
  • Direct Messages and Replies: I read all of my direct messages. It can sometimes take a while, but I always respond to those who ask a question or need a reply. As I mentioned before, I have met many great people and been able help a lot.

Twitter No-No’s by jmilles via Flickr These are things that I have learned to avoid or seen others do, and it makes me angry. I’ll give people a chance, but if you do these things, it’s likely I will block you. ?That means that I will mark you as spam and banish you from my site. Sorry, but you deserve it!

  • Spam – If I see another “Make thousands with Twitter!” message, I’ll scream at them. I’ll scream. ?Oh, there’s one right now. ?AHHHHHHHHHHHH!
  • Links without descriptions – If you’re going to post a link, provide a detailed and useful description of what it is.