The day is February 15, 2012. As the afternoon speeds by I get on the computer to respond to a mention on Twitter. I glance up to the corner and see the numbers 9,998. As I send a reply and the eight rolls over to a nine I begin to realize that I have hit a milestone. There have been 10,000 entries in my Twitter life. This is a special moment. Blood, sweat and tears have poured into my Twitter success, or lack thereof. As I pondered what to submit as this memorable tweet I decided that 140 characters simply wasn’t enough. So I decided a blog would be the way to express myself with the milestone moment. Is it cheating? No. It’s using your resources!
I began using Twitter on August 21, 2009. At the time I had no clue what it was for and didn’t really know anything about it. I figured I might get a few followers but not many and wasn’t sure what I would say using the platform. That fall Twitter instantly became an important tool. As I traveled the country and covered NAIA athletics with the College Fanz Sports Network I used twitter to stay updated on scored across the country every Saturday. It allowed me to updated the viewers of our broadcast on games around the country. Of course, it wasn’t all business as I built a following of friends that would begin Twitter conversations. In fact, I have one friend that told someone once that he and I don’t text anymore, we tweet.
My follower list began to grow and today is up to 485. It isn’t a crazy number, but higher than I expected to reach. I suppose if I were more interesting I would see that number continue to climb. There was a point in my life where I didn’t have much to tweet about and thought it was pointless to have. Instead of ending my Twitter life I was talked off the ledge and I continue to chirp away.
Many people have said they don’t do twitter because they don’t “get it.” Truthfully, it’s a pretty simple concept. You just say what you can in 140 characters. So is it another platform to complain on? You betcha. Is it a waste of time? Sure can be. Is it a useful tool? Absolutely.
There have been a few times where I have needed some information or a clarification on something. Send out the Twitter message and watch the responses pour in. I simply used the hashtag #SIDChat and people who do not follow me saw the question and responded.
So what’s a hashtag? It is simply a search tool or a way to classify a tweet. Anyone who clicks that hashtag can see every tweet that contains it. It basically allows for your tweet to be viewed by a potentially larger audience and can help you get an outside opinion from beyond your “circle.”
I have seen Twitter be used as a motivational tool as people across the country from one another commend the efforts of the other, especially when someone is run training for a race. You would be surprised with the deals or trivia giveaways that happen on twitter. And, when used correctly, twitter can be a heck of a way to promote something that you are doing.
The long and short of it is this. My time using twitter has been a learning experience. I continue to be amazed by the power of twitter. Many people start slow with twitter, but just give it some time and before long you too will hit a milestone Tweet like No. 10,000.
I have officially been a tweeter for 908 days. Through the blood, sweat, tears and hard work I am feeling good and looking forward to the next 10,000. Join me if you will. You can follow me @johncthayer.
See you in Twitterverse…..