This is the first installment of the Use Social Media To Connect With Other Gardeners Series. This installment will cover how to connect with other gardeners using Twitter. Tomorrow's installment will be about using Facebook, and Thursday's installment will be on using forums and gardening community websites. Be sure to check back in during the upcoming days so that you don't miss any of the installments.If you have not become a Twitter user yet, then it is something that you should look into. Many people new to Twitter may not understand how to use it, or its purpose, but Twitter can be used as a very valuable tool for vegetable gardeners. Twitter is a social media website that has exploded in popularity and use in the last twelve months. It is a great resource to connect with other gardeners, discover interesting gardening websites, gardening articles, blog posts, podcasts, and much more. Twitter gives you the ability to connect with all types of gardeners - from the who's who of vegetable gardening to the everyday average vegetable gardener. If you have a favorite celebrity gardener - such as Patti Moreno (twitter.com/PattiMoreno), or Joe Lamp'l (twitter.com/joegardener) - you can probably find them on Twitter. You can easily keep up with what they are doing, what tips they might be offering, any special announcements they release, or any posts they may submit on their blogs. It is almost like having your own personal 24 hour, seven day a week "CNN" of what other gardeners are doing and talking about.
Creating a "Gardeners" List In TwitterIf you are already a Twitter user, you might have 100 people or more that you are following. With this many people all popping out tweets it can sometimes become difficult to keep up with certain people. This is where a new feature Twitter added not long ago comes in handy - the ability to create lists. A list on Twitter is just how it sounds. It is a list of certain people that you want to separate from the rest of the crowd. Here is a tutorial of how to create a list in Twitter.
Open a Free Twitter AccountIf you are not a Twitter user already, then you can sign up for a free account. It only takes a minute to create an account. Be sure to go to the Profile page to fill out your profile, add your picture, customize your background, and you can go to the Settings page to change any settings if you like.
Creating Your First ListOnce you have your new Twitter account, you should go to your Home page. You should see a box at the top of the screen that states:
New! Lists. A great way to organize the people you follow and discover new and interesting accounts. (BETA)Right below that statement will be two buttons - one that says "Create a new list" and one that says "close". You should see it in the screen shot below circled in red. Clicking the "Create a new list" button will cause the "Create a new list" dialog box to appear. Once it appears, you will want to give your list a name to identify it, a short description, and select whether you want the list to be Public or Private. A Public list means that others will be able to see who is in your list, and can follow the list. A Private list means that only you can see the list that you are creating. I am naming my new list "Gardeners", but you can name yours anything you like. The same goes for the description. Just give your list a simple name so that you know what the list is for later. You can create as many lists as you like, so you might want to give each list a description so that you can keep them organized. Also, if you decide to allow others to see your list (Public), the description will let them know the subject of your list.
Add People To Your New ListOnce you have named your new list, added a description, and made your privacy selections - click the "create list" button. You will now be sent to a search page. On this page, you can search for people to add to your list. You can type in someone's name, their username, or you can type a keyword, such as "gardener". If you are already following people that you want on your list, just click the "Home" link at the top, then click the "following" link near the top right hand side of the page. This will show you the people you are currently following. You can add these people to your list in the same way that I am describing below. Once you have found someone you want to add to your list, just roll your mouse over the icons to the right of the user's name. Each icon has a tooltip that pops up as your cursor crosses it. If you wish to follow the person, then click the icon that is farthest to the left. If you want to add the person to your new list, click the icon in the middle. Here's a very cool feature of lists - you can add someone to a list without having to actually follow them. This way they show up in your list, but not on your home page feed. A dialog box with a list of your lists will pop up. Check the box that corresponds with the list that you would like to add the person to. You can add someone to several different lists if you like. As you can see in the above screen shot, I am adding the user "veggygarden" to my "gardeners" list. Continue this same process to add anyone else to your list. When you are finished adding tweeters to your list, return to your home feed page.
Finding Your New ListNow that you have create a list rich with some of the best gardeners known to man, how do you access it? Fairly simple. On your Home page, scroll about halfway down the page, and you will find a section titled "Lists" - right below the search bar. In this section you will see your new lists labeled: @yourusername/list name As you can see, I have three lists. Each list is a link that will take you to the folks in that list. Click the link of the list you want to access, and it takes you to that list. You are now viewing just the folks in that particular list. Now you can almost directly communicate to some of your favorite gardeners, and thousands of other gardeners on Twitter that share your interests. When you get on Twitter, make sure you look me up, and I will be glad to follow you. My Twitter username is @TeeRiddle or you can get there with this link: Tee Riddle on Twitter. You can also click on the Twitter button on the toolbar at the bottom. This will open up the Twitter Dashboard. I hope that you find this short tutorial on how to use Twitter to find interesting and knowledgeable gardeners on the internet. If you have other ways of using Twitter to chat with gardeners, please feel free to share them. I would love to hear your thoughts! Here are the other posts to the Use Social Media To Connect With Other Gardeners Series: Use Social Media To Connect With Other Gardeners Use Social Media To Connect With Other Gardeners - Facebook Use Social Media To Connect With Other Gardeners - Forums & Communities
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