Five years ago, I never thought I would be an “@” master. I can write it, I look for it, I memorize things that come after it, it’s on my biz cards and sometimes it is the first thing I look for on my iPad in the morning…all because of Twitter.
Now, I thought I knew all there was to know about Twitter. I’m a Tweeting fiend. Somewhere along the line, I missed something. I’m sure I must have heard it in Twitter 101 but maybe I just got so excited choosing my username that I never absorbed it. It wasn’t until about a month ago when my internet crush…I mean social media master/guru/guy I look up to, @GaryVee, posted THIS video about the “@ reply” that I became obsessed with seeing how I and many of the people I follow don’t use it to it’s full advantage. Gary talks pretty fast in the video so I am going to break it down, Cassie Style, on the blog. Here it goes:
1. We are all in agreement that as good social media users, we use Twitter to not only chat with our friends and promote ourselves but we mostly use Twitter to connect people and promote people we love…right? Right.
2. Keeping #1 in mind….if you send out a Tweet that says “Hey @SmartyCassie, I loved that video you did about hopscotch. Can you teach me?” everyone that follows YOU will see your Tweet mentioning ME whether I follow them or not. This is GREAT. We love it. You are telling your followers and the world how excellent my hopscotch video was. Yippeee!
3. If you send out a Tweet that says “@SmartyCassie, I loved that video you did about hopscotch. Can you teach me?” only ME and the people that follow YOU and ME will see it. That is still cool but not nearly as cool as the example in #2. What happened? Why isn’t it as good?
4. Twitter has this thing that if you start a Tweet with @, only your followers and the common people you share with the person you are @ing will see the Tweet. As soon as you stick SOMETHING, even a “<“, it opens your Tweet to the world. You have to stick something in there at the beginning, which is why so many of my Tweets start with “Hey @…” The “Hey” opens it up to the Twitterverse so that I can promote/bring awareness/help YOU become more visible.
5. Twitter should fix this…pronto. Until they do, puh-lease start your Tweets with something other than “@” to help spread the word about the Tweeps you love.