Beginners & Basics: Twitter 101

Our Beginners & Basics series is a collection of blogs and tips that are designed to help beginners understand the basics of communications, social media, and marketing. Welcome to Twitter 101.

What is Twitter?

Twitter is technically a “micro-blogging service,” allowing users to post and share comments, photos, videos and more. So what does that actually mean? Because it has a 240 character limit (recently bumped up from 140), it’s a place to share brief posts — not 3 paragraphs.

One thing to note about Twitter is that it has some unique terminology when referring to specific features. It may be confusing to newbies, so we broke down the basics for you:

Twitter Lingo:

  • Tweet: to post
  • Retweet: to repost another user’s post
  • Reply: using the @ to respond to someone’s post
  • Direct Message: private chat to specific user(s)
  • Hashtag: a symbol (the # sign) that categorizes tweets

Who uses it?

Donald Trump isn’t the only one who loves tweeting. With over 330 million monthly active users and 145 million daily active users, Twitter has a huge influence on today’s society. Many of these 330 million users are younger, but Twitter’s demographic reach is not only for millennials and Gen-Z.

63% of Twitter users are between the ages of 35 and 65. While other social media platforms like Snapchat and TikTok are famous for catering to younger generations, it’s clear that Twitter appeals to a more mature audience as well.

Why is it helpful for businesses?

With such an impressive number of active users, Twitter is one of the best digital marketing tools for businesses. Twitter allows for brands and businesses to engage personally with their consumers. It allows for conversation and brands to practice transparent communication.

Twitter even made a sandwich go viral. Seriously.

However, not all brands need a Twitter account. It’s often hard to decide what social media is helpful and what’s overkill. We’re here to help you figure out who your audience is and how to reach them. Twitter may or may not be the answer!

Brands that are killing the Twitter game:

5 Basic Stats About Social Media

communications consultants providing social media management, content creation, public relations, and media pitching

There’s a lot of information about social media out there nowadays, and it’s hard to keep track of what’s important and what’s not. Different things matter to different people (ie: what’s important to Coca-Cola is probably not as important to a small bank), but here are some statistics about social media that are relevant to pretty much everyone.

  • Internet users have an average of 7.6 social media accounts. Some of the most popular and recognizable are Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn, but other sites like Snapchat, Tumblr, Reddit, Pinterest, and Google+ also draw users.
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  • Facebook has the most users of any social media site. By far. Facebook has more than 2 billion users, followed by YouTube with 1.5 billion and Instagram with 800 million. Overall, there are more than 3 billion social media users. That is a heck. of. a. lot. of. people.
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  • According to a 2011 study, 27 million pieces of content are shared every day. This is both good and bad for companies. There is a lot of opportunity for your content to be shared, but there’s also a lot of competition. Content has to be compelling in order for people to share it, so make sure it’s good!
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  • 500 million people visit Twitter each month without logging in. Add that to the 330 million users with accounts, and Twitter can be an incredibly powerful platform. There are 6,000 tweets sent every second — which is more than 500 million per day.
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  • 60% of Snapchat users are under the age of 25 and in 2016, $90 million was spent on Snapchat ads. While Snapchat draws a massive amount of young people, it doesn’t perform nearly as well with older demographics, who are more typically heavy Facebook users.