Smart Ways to Use Twitter Lists

October 25, 2011

Lists are one of Twitter’s best features because they help you use Twitter strategically, rather than haphazardly.

Do you use them yet? If you don’t, hopefully you’ll be convinced to get on that bandwagon by the end of this (short) email.

Lists help you see tweets by certain people and drown out all the rest. (I’ll let Mashable explain in detail.) Knowing how to use lists to your advantage is an excellent way to use social media to Make Your Own Luck.

Rather than using lists on Twitter’s site, do yourself a favor and pull them into Hootsuite, so you can see them side by side and browse them easily.

Here are a few ways I use lists:

  • Target and converse with people I want to notice me (my own private lists)
  • Find new tweeps to follow (other people’s lists)
  • Showcase my expertise about players in a certain industry (my own public lists)
  • Help a group of people who have something in common find each other and interact (my own public lists)
  • Follow news and happenings in a particular industry (any type of list)
  • Keep track of people I’d like to pitch when a particular product launches (my own private lists)
  • Follow real-life friends to see what they’re up to (my own private lists)

I use all of these strategies not only for myself, but also to grow and make the most of my clients’ accounts.

How do you use Twitter lists?

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10 Replies to “Smart Ways to Use Twitter Lists”

  • Kim Kircher says:

    I use Twitter, but only reluctantly. I find myself a bit overwhelmed by the platform. Why can’t Twitter be easier to use? Sometimes it feels like it has gained popularity in spite of itself. I know there are all these kinds of tricks (and I appreciate you explaining the importance of lists), but I too often find myself being reactive on Twitter. My favorite use is to hit the Tweet button when I find something interesting and want to share it. But interacting with other users still feels daunting.

    • Alexis Grant says:

      Hey Kim — Only the lingo is intimidating — the technology itself is simple. Maybe Google around for a list of Twitter lingo, and check it out so you feel more comfortable using it yourself?

      Twitter is really such an awesome networking tool, if you can figure out how to make it work for you.

      (I also do coaching sessions on this, if you’re ever to the point of super frustration!)

  • Bret Juliano says:

    I’ve yet to find the value in lists. I am listed twice, but I have yet to actually create them for myself. I just use the original site and don’t understand the purpose behind it.

    • Alexis Grant says:

      Hi Bret — Maybe that’s because you’re not following many people yet? Lists because useful once you’re following more then 500 or so people — and the more you follow, the more useful they become. When you follow a lot of people, your stream can become full of noise you don’t care about. Lists help you filter through that noise to find tweets that are useful, helpful and entertaining.

  • Alexis Grant says:

    I’m guessing from the lack of comments on this post that readers need some tips on how to use lists πŸ™‚

  • Hi Alexis,

    One issue I’ve brushed up against with Hootsuite is that it only allows you to view ten streams (lists). I’m at the point where I’d like to view more than that. Have you found a way to do that?

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