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The Number One Mistake Everybody Makes on Twitter

by gary-vaynerchuk

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I can't believe that so many people misunderstand a super fundamental piece of Twitter's functionality. It's shocking.
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  • Twitter has been around since 2006.
  • And what really frustrates me…
  • Is that so many people still screw up a really basic piece of Twitter’s functionality.
  • Allow me to explain:
  • I have something I need to get off my chest, something I need everyone to know !
  • so I head to Twitter and I tweet this:
  • @Patriots I hate all of you.!
  • But there is a problem. !
  • I want everybody to know. !
  • But because the tweet started with an @ sign… !
  • ONLY the traitors people who follow BOTH me AND the Patriots will see this tweet. !
  • NOT all of my followers (and I have a lot)
  • Which is EXCEPTIONAL for certain situations.* *But that's another Slideshare for another day.
  • But not this one.
  • So now a tweet like this: !
  • So now a tweet like this: ! The @Patriots haven’t won a Super Bowl since they were caught cheating. #Justsaying #Truth
  • Will show up to all 1,000,000+ of my followers
  • WHY?
  • Because @ is not the first character of the tweet: The @Patriots haven’t won a Super Bowl since they were caught cheating. #Justsaying #Truth
  • When that happens, all of your followers see it no matter what else is in the tweet.
  • Let’s take a look at another example:
  • @wilfork75 really really really really really really really really annoys me
  • Again, only going to the LIMITED number of my followers who ALSO follow Vince Wilfork. !
  • NO GOOD !
  • EVERYONE MUST KNOW !
  • But it’s an easy fix: ! .@wilfork75 really really really really really really really really annoys me
  • See that period at the beginning? ! .@wilfork75 really really really really really really really really annoys me
  • . That is the most misunderstood piece of punctuation on Twitter. !
  • Now that I tweeted starting with a period…
  • ALL of my followers can understand just how much Vince pisses me off.
  • So clearly this is a really important mechanic.
  • And to be honest, I am shocked that Twitter hasn’t done a better job explaining it to new users.
  • If I ran things, here is what I would do.
  • The first time you used the @ message, this would appear:
  • Pretty cool right?
  • Hey one last thing.
  • I’m actually not all about people using this mechanic all the time.
  • I would prefer that you just change the content up a little.
  • Just find a different way to structure the sentence. ! The @Patriots haven’t won a Super Bowl since they were caught cheating. #Justsaying #Truth
  • It looks and feels a lot more natural.
  • But if you absolutely have to start a tweet with someone’s handle.
  • Now you know what to do.
  • ;)
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