Twitter has become a mainstay of the social networking world. It can be fun to send and receive tweets involving friends and family. How can you get set up on Twitter and how can a dad use Twitter to be a better father?
Time Required: A few minutes each day
- Sign up for a Twitter account. This is really simple. Just go to the Twitter sign up page, enter your information and choose a username and then log in.
- Find some friends or family members and follow them. Once you log back into Twitter as a user, click the "Who to Follow" button at the top of the page. Then click on the "Find Friends" link and you can look for friends from your Gmail contact list, your LinkedIn connections, or from contact lists at Hotmail, Yahoo or Messenger. Or you can type in the search box the name of a friend or family member and see if they tweet. When you find the right one, click on the "Follow" button to follow that person's tweets.
- Let friends and family know you are on Twitter. You can email your friends and family and let them know that you have joined Twitter and what your username is. Then, if they have a Twitter account, they can log on and then follow you. Then each time you tweet, your followers will be able to see what you said.
- Send out some tweets. So, when you are ready, go back to the Twitter Home Page and then type in a message of up to 140 characters in the "What's Happening" box and then click the "Tweet" button. Your tweet will head out to people who follow you.
- Log on to Twitter regularly to tweet or to read. The put a bookmark on your web browser to Twitter and jump on occasionally to read tweets or to send one out.
- Try retweeting. One of the things I like about Twitter is that when I see a tweet from someone that I think my followers would like, I can click the "Retweet" button and send out a copy of that tweet to others. It gives you lots of opportunities to share good thoughts, links and ideas with all your friends and followers.
- Consider using the Twitter Apps. Twitter has a number of apps for mobile phones. I use the Blackberry app, but there are also apps for the iPhone and for Android phones. Installing the app allows me to read and send tweets on the go or when I am waiting in a long line (but never while driving).
- Use some great Twitter tools. If you have a blog, you can create a feed to your Twitter account so your blog posts get tweeted. I use TwitterFeed for automatically tweeting whenever I post to my blog. It works really well. If you are at your desktop most of the day, a little application called TweetDeck manages all your incoming and outgoing tweets very efficiently.
- Follow me. Finally, once you get going, come to my Twitter page and click on Follow. I tweet all my blog posts, new content on the About.com Fatherhood site and occasionally when I run into something I think dads would like. I usally only tweet 3 or 4 times a week, so it is not too overwhelming.
- Look through your followers' followers. One of the best ways to find interesting people to follow is to look through the followers of the people you follow and the people who follow you. With similar interests or friends in common, you might find some really fascinating folks.
- Use Twitter for the cute things the kids say. One dad I know got Twitter accounts for each of hiUse Twitter for the cute things the kids say. One dad I know got Twitter accounts for each of his children, and the tweets in their name and records the cute things they say. It is a good way to keep grandparents and friends in the loop with those little kid-isms that come along. s children, and the tweets in their name and records the cute things they say. It is a good way to keep grandparents and friends in the loop with those little kid-isms that come along.
- Use Twitter to reconnect. With the millions of people now on Twitter, with a little networking, you can find some old buddies, long lost friends and cousins you didn't even know you had. It can be addicting, but take the challenge to see who you can find.
- Use Twitter to network. I have connected with many other dads, fathers who write, men who are going through divorce, and others who offer resources for dads. I get a lot of ideas for articles from what other people out there are writing and offering opinions about.
What You Need
- A computer and web brower
- An email account
- Some time to follow what is going on
- Some things, events or ideas to share