4 reasons to use Twitter lists

As we grow our Twitter networks, it can easily become difficult to keep track of the people we most want to engage with.  The solution to this is to use the List feature offered by Twitter, which enables you to group the people you follow (and even those that you don’t) into different lists.

You can then simply view any particular list and you will only see the tweets from the people that you’re interested in at that moment.  Time slows down in Twitter lists, posts aren’t moving so quickly that you’ll miss them.  You could have lists for clients, new business opportunities, journalists, your industry peers, friends, a particular group that you’re involved with, celebrities, colleagues, news services… whatever takes your fancy.

So how can you use Twitter lists for a richer Twitter experience?  Here are four examples:

  1. You can track people that are important to your goals – for example, if you are tracking specific people within an organisation that you want to work for, or wish to have as a client, you can add them to a list and check in regularly to see what they’re talking about. You could occasionally retweet their content, interact with them if you have a relevant comment on something they’ve tweeted about, and draw attention to yourself as someone that they should follow / get to know.  You can also keep an eye on what subjects they talk about, and maybe tailor some of your content to their interests.  It also gives you insight into which industry events they’re attending, so you can get the heads up on opportunities to ‘bump’ into them. This does feel a little bit stalker-ish, so I urge you to use it responsibly!  One important tip is to ensure that when you create your list for ‘opportunities’ that you mark is as private.  Otherwise, the people you add to this list will be notified they’ve been added to your list ‘people I’m tracking’.
  1. You can flatter people whose attention you want to grab – I mentioned above that you should create ‘private’ lists for people you’re tracking because otherwise they’ll be notified that you’ve added them to your list. However, with an open list, where the people are notified, you can flatter them by adding them to a list with a grand title, such as: The Best Minds in [add your industry], or Great Thought Leaders in [xyz], etc.  It’s a nice touch!
  1. They help you to become a good member of your Twitter community – if there are people that regularly share your content, add them to a list so that you can check in and ensure you are returning the favour.
  1. You can follow other people’s lists – if you are looking for people to follow around a specific subject, check to see if anyone who is already well established in that field, has set up a list. If they have, you can simply follow their list and have instant access to an audience that may be interested in you too.

For more information on how to set up Twitter lists, click here.

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By Christine Jones, Tiger Mouth

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