Ultimate Guide on How to Use Twitter – Lesson 2: Twitter Account Overview
In the previous lesson we were able to sign up for our Twitter account. If you’ve missed it, check out the link below.
After you’ve successfully signed up for Twitter, you’ll be placed on your “Home” dashboard also. There’s a lot of features here to cover so let’s take a look at them and how we can use them.
Twitter Account Overview
The “Home” is the page you’ll see every time you log in. This gives you a quick view of your account.
As I mentioned earlier it shows your profile on the top left which displays the number of tweets you’ve made and the number of people who you are following. If you have any followers, that will show up there as well. You can click on your profile image, name, handle, or tweets to go to your profile page.
I really recommend that you go to your profile page and click on the “Edit Profile” button. This allows you to fill in more details about yourself in the profile box as well as change your profile photo. If you have a website, you should add the link to your profile details. If you don’t have a website, you should get one. You can get one for free here. I recommend uploading a header photo as well to make your profile more attractive to users. Make sure it’s relevant to your niche. You can also change your theme color here.
- add a picture and header image – people are visual so they want to see something that is eye-catching but make it relevant to your account
- give a brief bio of your account – people have short attention spans so they won’t read it all if it’s too long
- add hashtags – you can add hashtags that are relevant to your profile as they are searchable in the Twitter search and your profile can come up in results
- use keywords in bio – like I just mentioned, the bio can be searchable so use some relevant keywords so your profile will come up in results. Don’t just start stuffing keywords though as that’s unattractive
- add your website link – a good way for people to learn more about you and you get website traffic
There’s also a “Trends” box right underneath your profile info to show what’s currently trending. By default, they are tailored just for you based on your location and who you follow. If you want to change that, you can click on the “Change” link beside the “Trends” heading and choose a different location. This is handy if for example you live in Canada, like me, but your target audience is in the United States. I can easily switch the trend location and see what’s trending in different locations in the U.S.
In a later lesson I’ll show you how to use these trends to your advantage to gain more exposure and get more followers.
Tweeting is of course the way to get your posts seen by other Twitter users so it’s a very important thing to learn about. In the top middle of your screen there’s a “What’s happening?” box where you can type and send a tweet. You can either click that or the blue “Tweet” button on the top right of the page to post a tweet (More details on tweeting will be covered in a later lesson).
Just simply type a message up to 140 characters and click “Tweet” to post the message. This can be seen by any user who is either following you or who is doing a search on Twitter (Searching will be covered in a later lesson).
For a quick overview for tweets, you can:
- type text
- add URL links which will automatically get shortened by Twitter’s own URL shortener
- Add an image by clicking on the camera icon
- Add one of Twitter’s custom animated GIFs by clicking on the “GIF” icon
- Create a Poll by clicking on the Poll icon
- Turn locations on, which means Twitter will keep track of the location you’re at when you tweet (by default it’s OFF)
There should be a bunch of tweets posted underneath and those are tweets from the accounts you are following. This is called your timeline. If you haven’t followed anyone then you probably won’t see any tweets yet.
They are listed in chronological order with the earliest at the top and when you stay on the page and get new tweets to look at, there will be a notification message saying “View 2 new Tweets” or something similar to indicate that there are more for you to see. Click on it and it’ll load the new tweets.
Most tweets come with an image or a link so if you click on it you’ll be able to see a bigger picture of the image or go to the site that is linked. If you see a link that starts with a “@”, that actually is a Twitter user and if you click that link you will be taken to that user’s page.
If you find the tweet interesting and you have something to say, you can click on the left pointing arrow to type a reply message.
If you want to share the post and retweet it, click on the second set of arrows pointing around in a square. You will be given the option to add some of your own text or you can just retweet it as is.
If you “like” the post, you can click the heart icon to like it. It will show up under “Likes” in your profile.
If you click on the icon with the 3 horizontally aligned dots, it’ll give you options to
- Share via Direct Message – allows you to share the post via direct message
- Copy link to Tweet – gives you the URL of the tweet so you can share via other methods like email or other social networks
- Embed Tweet – allows you to get get HTML code that you can insert into your site to embed the tweet
- Mute – Prevent any notifications from that account
- Block – Block that account
- Report – Report that account
To embed a tweet click the three dots under the tweet you like. Then select Embed Tweet.
You’ll get a pop up box that contains the HTML code that you need to copy and paste in your WordPress page. Copy the highlighted text by either right clicking and selecting “Copy” or pressing and holding CTRL and C on your keyboard.
Next, login to your WordPress site and edit the Page/Post you want to add it in. Click on the “Text” tab on the top right of the editor to go into “Text Mode”. This allows you to view your page’s HTML code. Find the section you want to embed your tweet and paste it in. You can either first left click where you want to paste it, then right click and select “Paste” or you can first left click where you want to paste it and press and hold CTRL and V on your keyboard. Once the embed code is there, save your page. You can click on the “Visual” tab on the top right of your editor to go back to the visual editor mode.
Now if you view your saved page you’ll see your embedded tweet! People can interact with it directly on the page by clicking the “Follow” button to follow you, clicking the left arrow at the bottom to reply to you, the square arrow to retweet you, or the heart to like you! Pretty cool huh?
Who To Follow
On the right side (it could also appear on the left bar or within your feed area depending on what page you are on) there’s a “Who to follow” list which are accounts that Twitter suggests you to follow. You can quickly and easily follow them by clicking on the “Follow” button. Once you follow someone from the list, it’ll refresh and add more suggestions for you to follow.
If you want to find your own people to follow just click on the “Find friends” link at the bottom of the “Who to follow” box.
Beside the “Home” tab is the “Moments” tab. This is a collection of all the popular moments based on your interests.
You’ll be able to quickly tweet about these moments by clicking on the image or title link which will show you the full details. It’ll also list all the popular tweets related to the moment.
The tab next to Moments is “Notifications”. This will list all of your notifications when someone interacts with you. The image below shows when you will get notifications.
Messages will display all your Direct Messages you get from users. These will not be seen by other users and are private. Note that these chats do not have the 140 character limit and is more like a personal user to user chat. People often use these to send personal welcome messages or “Thank you for following” messages.
On the top right of your screen there’s a “Search Twitter” box that allows you to search Twitter just like how you would on a search engine. The results will show you all the tweets that match your search (I go over searching in more detail in a later lesson).
For a quick overview, by default you’ll be on the “Top” tab which shows the top tweets related to your search. Beside that there is a “Live” tab that shows all the tweets in real time. The “Accounts” tab beside that displays all the Twitter accounts that match your search. “Photos” obviously display matching photos and “Videos” displays matching videos. “More options” allow you to filter your results even further.
Profile and Settings
I’ll be covering this in a later lesson so I’ll just lightly touch it for now. If you click on your icon on the top right beside the “Search Twitter” bar you’ll see a bunch of options. One of those is the “View Profile” which goes to your profile page and is what other users will see when they visit your profile.
There are other interesting things like Lists, Help, Keyboard shortcuts, Twitter Ads, Analytics, and Settings. Like I said, I’ll be covering these later so that’s all I’ll say about them for now. At the end of the list is the “Log out” link that lets you log out.
So today you learned:
- how to setup your profile
- follow some friends and accounts you are interested in
- learn about the basic functionalities of Twitter and your “Home” dashboard
Now that we got all the boring admin related stuff out of the way we’ll be learning more fun stuff in the next lessons as I’ll show you techniques that I used to successfully gain followers.
If you have any comments or questions, please leave them in the comment section below.
Click the link below to move on to the next lesson.
If you’ve missed the Course Overview, you can check it out below.
If you’ve missed the Course Overview, you can check it out below.