Dummies Guide for How to Start Twitter
If you are a late bloomer and just, realized that you are left behind the world, by not having a twitter account, then you are at the right place, as we would guide you through step by step to put up a great twitter account.
1. Set up your account.
Go to Twitter to get started. Enter your name, email, and a password. Click Sign up.
You will now be taken to a second screen where can select a username. This is the name by which you will be known on Twitter. What name should you use?
Your real name is best—if it’s available. If not, you can try using a middle initial or prefacing it with something like “the” or “real” (e.g., “Thejohncena” or “Real Mathewjose”).
Now click on create my account button. That’s it. You are now official a member of the Twitter community. Congratulations!
Next, Twitter will assist you in getting started. It will explain what a tweet is and give you the opportunity to “follow” a few friends, popular people, or brands. You can opt out of these steps for now if you wish.
Twitter will also give you a chance to see if some of your friends are on Twitter by checking your online address book. However, your contacts will have to be in one of the supported services: GMail, Hotmail, Yahoo, or AOL. Also, you’ll only see users who have allowed their accounts to be found by email address.
This wasn’t that helpful to me when I initially started, since my contacts resided in Microsoft Outlook. However, I had a GMail account, so I just exported my contacts from Outlook and then imported them into Gmail. It worked flawlessly. However, if you get stuck, forget this step. You can add your friends later.
2. Tweak your settings
Make sure you are on your Twitter home page. Click on the Settings link. You should be on the Account tab. Set the time zone.
Do not check “Protect my updates” unless you only want those whom you approve to be able to get your updates. Personally, if you check this, it will seriously limit the fun. Make whatever other changes you want. Click the Save button.
Now click on the Profile tab. Upload your picture. This is important. Many Twitter users (including me) will not follow users without photos, because it is a tell-tale sign of a spammer. Remember that the maximum upload size of your photo is 700k, so you may have to re-size your image to meet this requirement.
Enter the rest of your information, including your location, website or blog (if any), and a brief bio. This, too, is important to keep you from getting flagged as a possible spammer. Your bio can either be serious or fun, but it must be brief—no more than 160 characters.
Note that you can also connect your Twitter account to Facebook on this page. This will post all your Tweets directly to Facebook. Personally, I don’t recommend this, but you may want to do it. You can always change the setting later.
When you are finished, click the Save button.
3. Setup your phone
Twitter is much more fun if you connect it to your cell phone. By doing so, you can receive updates from those you are following (or just some of them) as well as send your own updates. It’s all done through text messaging (e.g., SMS).
However, be forewarned: While Twitter doesn’t charge anything for this service, your phone carrier might. It’s a good idea to check with them and make sure you are on an “unlimited text messaging plan.” You don’t want to be surprised with a big phone bill.
Again, under the Settings link, click on the Mobile tab. Enter your mobile phone number and click on the Start button. Now take your cell phone and text message the code Twitter gives you to 40404 (the number will be different if you are outside the U.S.). Be patient. Eventually, Twitter will confirm to you that your device is registered.
If you are using an iPhone, Twitter is built into the operating system (at least if you are using iOS 5 and up). You can set it up by opening the Preferences app, scrolling down the screen, and touching the Twitter section. This will give you the ability to post updates to Twitter from within many iPhone applications, including the Photo app.
Now, while still on your cell phone, set up a contact named “Twitter.” For the mobile phone number, use 40404. Now every time you want to send a Twitter update, you will send it to this contact name.
Follow family and friends
If you haven’t done so already, add your family and friends by clicking in the “Search” field at the top of your home page. You can type in a username or first and last name. When you do, you will get a list of users who match your search criteria.
You can also do a more advanced search (e.g., searching by location) by clicking on “Refine results” or by going directly to the Advanced Search page.
You can begin “following” them by simply clicking on the Followbutton. If you want to also follow them on your cell phone, then you can turn the “Device Updates” to “on.” Personally, I only follow my family and a few close friends on my cell phone. Regardless, you will be able to see everyone you follow on your Twitter home page.
Learn the basic commands
Think of Twitter as a room full of people, all sitting in a circle. It’s a conversation. When you update your status, you are speaking to the whole group. Everyone can hear what you have to say.