Twitter Basics

Twitter logoTwitter is a free social networking and microblogging service that enables its users to send and read brief messages known as tweets. Tweets are text-based posts of up to 140 characters displayed on the author's profile page and delivered to the author's subscribers, who are known as followers. Senders can restrict delivery to those in their circle of friends by maintaining a “private” account, or, by default, allow open access.

You can use Twitter to post questions, comments, and inquiries about job opportunities, companies, career paths, get professional advice, or whatever else is on your mind. You should also engage with and contribute to your community by sharing information, ideas, links, and photos - this way fellow users will be have motivated to follow you and get to know you. As with LinkedIn and Facebook, social networks platforms thrive on engagement and sharing. And also as with all public forums, make sure that what you post represents you at your professional best. Here are some helpful tips:

  • Choose a professional username, preferably one that incorporates your name.
  • Include your full name, location, and link (to your LinkedIn profile, online resume, or professional blog) in your profile. Choose a professional-style photo of yourself so people can put a face to your name.
  • You have 140 characters for your bio, so be concise and clear: mention your profession, main skills, and ultimate career goal. Keep the details relevant and up-to-date.
  • The key to starting on Twitter is following valuable connections, listening to what they say, and interacting with them.
  • Build your community slowly, and follow higher-ups in companies, industry icons, recruiters, and other job seekers.
  • Respond to people's tweets by using the '@' sign and their username (also known as their "Twitter handle"), or just click on the reply button at the bottom of every tweet.
  • Avoid asking bluntly about open jobs.
  • Post valuable links to articles and news you find, share your knowledge and opinions, and build connections based on trust.
  • Become familiar with @mentions, RT's (retweets), DM's (direct messages), hashtags (#), and other Twitter protocols.
  • Treat Twitter as more than just a job search tool, and that next tweet might bring you one step closer to your dream job!

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