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Using Twitter as a tool

Twitter is famous for being the most up-to-date news source in the world. This alone kind of makes it perfect for writers because it asks them to do the thing they’re really good at, write. But there are some other really great benefits to Twitter you might not know about. 

What makes Twitter worth your time

Twitter makes it easy to find your people. I know LinkedIn might be your first destination to find out where people work, but the Twitter search function has it beat. 

  1. Open up Twitter and tap the search button. 

  2. Type in “@voguemagazine” and hit search. 

  3. Tap on “people.” 

The results will populate everyone who currently has “@voguemagazine” in their bio including senior writers, editors and other past contributors. If writing for Vogue is a goal, follow the people who write and edit for Vogue. Get to know what they share and write about, and engage with their content. 

Twitter is a great place to establish an audience. People get on Twitter to share and read stories and opinions so it’s a good place to talk about the things that matter to you and the things you write about.   

Twitter is for micro-blogging. The entire purpose of the platform is to host very short versions of otherwise long-form thought. When I’m ideating on a pitch or article, I like to share some of my thoughts on Twitter. Sometimes the comment section provides helpful resources like experts that want to lend a quote, stories that expand my article in progress or perspectives I didn’t consider.  

Editors will check your Twitter page. It might not be every editor’s go-to, but Twitter is a good place to see a writer’s audience and get an idea of their voice. No, you don’t have to have a ton of followers, but at least have a functional bio with your name, what you do and a link that tells people more about your work — like a landing page or a published article or blog.

Develop a Twitter strategy

Before you get started, I recommend getting familiar with Twitter’s save and schedule functions. There’s no reason to dedicate a lot of time to planning out elaborate content for Twitter, because content doesn’t stay relevant long on there. Set aside 30 minutes to brush up on the timeline, find new people to follow and share your own thoughts. Otherwise, when you think of a tweet, type it and send it off immediately or schedule it for later. 

First identify your goals for Twitter.

Then create a strategy for Twitter. Plan out what you will post over the next month. Include a variety of types of posts so you can measure your audience’s response. Here are a few examples:

  • A thread with advice for something you feel confident about.

  • Historical facts about someone whose birthday is coming up.

  • A call to action for a quote, source or resource.

  • A quote from something you wrote or read.

  • The work of another writer or creative as an ‘appreciation post’.

Let’s review:

  • You know how to use Twitter to find editors, writers — your tribe.

  • You have the next thirty days of tweets planned out.

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