A quick introduction to Twitter


The Twitter format is quite different to the social networks previously mentioned i.e. Facebook.
It is a micro-blogging site and it is free to set up an account.
Basically a micro-blog, as its name suggests, is similar to a blog, but you are limited to how much text you can “tweet”. (140 characters) This includes any links to other sources of information.

Twitter has approximately 555 million registered users and 182 million unique visitors per month.

Facebook connections are made by invitations, but on Twitter you are free to “follow” anyone, so Twitter is a little more liberal.
There is a definite plus side to this when it comes to recruitment, as very large networks can be produced in a short amount of time. There is a definite argument over whether quality is better than quantity with the numbers of followers though. (Most “Tweeps”, which means Twitter people, can’t resist the urge to collect the highest number of followers!!)

There can also be a downside to having a lot of followers, as the number of tweets coming through and your feed can suddenly become noisy

There are a few additional features to Twitter:

  • Hashtags (#tags) – using a # tag you can highlight a word or phrase and make it more visible to the rest of the network. Trends are created based on the number of times a #tag is used.
  • @ mentions – every user has a username, marked with @user_name. This makes it easier to find people when searching. It can also be sued to highlight their name in a tweet, so they can be included.
  • Direct messages (DMs) can be sent to anyone who is also following you and “following back” is one of the unwritten rules on Twitter.
  • Retweets (RTs) – If you like a tweet that you see, you can RT it and share it with your followers. This can be very viral!

Some companies use the twitter feed as a jobs board, posting nothing but job ads, but these can also be useful for job seekers.
Recent additions to Twitter have been geo-location , where you can tag a location to each of your tweets (very useful for narrowing down job ads for job seekers to particular areas) and Twitter “cards”. Cards are the most recent addition and are part of the “extended tweets” approach that Twitter are now using.
The 140 character limit can be slightly limiting, so the developers at Twitter have now made extensions, such as being able to include media links and extended tweets to show photo attachments.

The strategies and approaches for using Twitter for recruiters and job seekers, are different to Facebook and the other social media, so I’ll cover these later.

That’s a very brief introduction to Twitter, as it is quite a simple system, although the strategies used to make it effective can be quite in depth. I’ll be moving onto those in a later post, so bear with me and we’ll get there! It will definitely be worth the wait though, so click the “follow” button, so that you won’t miss out!

Next time I’ll move onto “Blogs and blogging”, so I’ll see you then 🙂



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