Sam_Grains

Slight ramblings…

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A guide to AgChatOZ using Tweetchat

November 22nd, 2011 · No Comments

When participating in AgChatOZ we realise it’s hard to keep track of everyone chatting at once, and thats why I’ve set out this little guide to help you a bit more. If you get stuck on something please feel free to leave a comment and ask a question or catch me on Twitter and ask

There are many ways to get involved in AgChatOZ (Twitter Website, Tweetdeck, Twitter apps to name but a few) but one of the simplest ways is through a website called Tweetchat ()

The most important part about being involved in AgChatOZ (it gets new and old users every week!) is remembering to use the hashtag #agchatoz in your tweet.
I really cant stress that enough, if you dont include #agchatoz in your tweet it wont show up for every one to see!

Luckily Tweetchat puts the tag in automaticly so you dont have to worry about it

To actually post to AgChatoz you must have a Twitter Account and be logged in via the Tweetchat site (if it is your first time you will be asked if you want to authorise tweetchat to access you info on Twitter, you must do this to use Tweetchat)

1 Address Bar – This is the site you are currently on for the chat which should be http://tweetchat.com/room/agchatoz

2 Mesage box – This is there you type your tweet. You will see in the right hand corner under the signout button there is a letter count too. It only gives you 130 characters as it puts in “#agchatoz ” for you and that is 10 characters

3 Pause button – Sometimes you might like a little time to read through the tweets or maybe you need to get dinner on or look anter the kids but dont want to loose you place in AgChatOZ. You can press this button and it will stack the tweets for you until you unpause it, but be carful, if you have been away a while you might have a lot of tweets to come back to!

4/4a Refresh Speed – This controls how fast the page gets new tweets. I reccomend putting it down to every 5 seconds (The lowest it can go) to get the latest tweets, of course you can alter it to set your own pace, remembering the longer you leave it the more tweets there will be!

5/5a User control – Sometimes there are people that you always want to see tweets from and you can do this by “Featuring” the user. When that person tweets you will see a blue line next to their tweet to highlight it. You can also block users this way and their tweets will vanish from the chat and you wont see them. To use either of these options copy just the name of the tweeter (not the @ symbol) and then insert a comma so it takes effect

6 Block Retweets – If you are new to AgChatOZ or find it hard to keep up this is a box you should tick. It simply means you wont see a double up of tweets that other people think are important. While its good to see what others think sometimes you just get too many when a good point is made and you loose track. Its an easy way to just keep on to of what people are saying without the clutter

Please get in touch via a comment or Twitter if you need more help

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→ No CommentsTags: Social Media · Twitter

What next?

November 18th, 2011 · 3 Comments

Ok so youve signed up to twitter and are ready to tweet. Now STOP!

While thats a great effort (And I do really mean that) it doesnt end there, you cant go straight to tweeting before you do the next thing which is nearly as important as creating the account itself,

Because its all about you!

Now you might be like me and think “there’s nothing interesting about me” but really there is, remember no one can tell your story as good as YOU!
I like reading people’s bio’s, it’s their chance to put their best foot forward and tell me something about themselves and hopefully get me to follow them, thats right. I read through people’s bios (and the last 10-15 of their tweets) to see if I would like to follow them (i reccomend you do to) I gives me a sense of how frequently they tweet, what they are talking about but most of all the bio tells me what they are interested in and what they do. If thats blank then I havent much to go on, except the tweets and if they only have a new account then thats even worse and they probally havent tweeted yet! So I wont follow them and they have lost their chance to make an impression on me

Lets go through what you can do to make you bio a bit more follower friendly!

Below is my profile, lets have a look at it guided buy some numbers:
The first thing to be aware of is where we are, if you are already signed in to twitter you can simply type twitter.com/settings/profile in to your address bar and then you are at your settings page which will look similar to the one below

profile pic

1: Picture – This doesnt have to be a photo of you, as you can see with my profile above but it does neet to be a picture of something, Photo of you on a tractor, a Caricature of you, maybe like me something you are interested in or maybe its a photo of your favorite cow or your Barley crop just before harvest. Whatever it is, just make sure you change it from the Egg! Its also a way to give your profile a bit of personallity and colour!

2: Name – This is just want you want to be called online, I would encourage even if the Account is for Business use to put your first name in there so that people engaging with you online feel more conected, im not sure how many times ive had to contact someone about AgChatOZ only to have a Biz name come up so I couldnt call the person I was speaking to by their name (Which I really hate!)

3: Location – This one us easy, but I would say be as specific as possible, I wouldnt just say “Australia” when you could say “Bloomfield, near Orange NSW ” Which is so much more descriptive and lets them know where you really are (Dont put your street adress in here, thats a bit too close!)

4 :Web – This is simply a place to put a link to a website/blog/facebook/Linkedin profile and you dont have to use it at all. I link to my Linkedin as I would like people to feel free to conect with me and know a bit more about what I do (The only thing I ask is that you use your Twitter name when inviting me, as sometimes I dont know who it is!) This is also the perfect place to put your business weksite

5: Bio – The MOST important part of your profile. While you have to fit it in 160 characters ith is more than enought space to tell followers about you! Its one of the things I use when Im choosing to follow someone as it tells me about them and what they are interested in! Dont just say “Farmer from Australia”, instead say “Sheep and Cattle Producer from Orange NSW. Interested in Animal welfare & I help make your Woolen socks and feed your family, Chat to me about what I do!”

Its descriptive, tell’s people where you are and what you Farm and most of all its inviting! People have questions and they are just looking for the right person to ask! If you fill in you Bio correctly people will also be able to find you useing the Twitter Search features so you might attract new followers just by having a good Bio!

6: Facebook – This is an option that allows you to post Tweets to Facebook, I dont use this option (for a few reasons) but the option is there if you want to use just 1 platform for your social media engagement

And there you have it, a short little intro as to why your bio is important

As always, feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts and catch me online on Twitter! (@Sam_Grains)

~ Feel free to leave me a comment, if you cant see the spam picture, just enter any 6 letter/number combo in the box, and submit, it should work! ~

→ 3 CommentsTags: Social Media · Twitter

To reply or not? (Quick Tips)

October 7th, 2011 · 2 Comments

I use Twitter a bit (maybe a bit more) and what I do enjoy is reading what people are tweeting to each other, and sometimes I’ll see an interesting tweet and either want to be involved or simply read some context to what the user is saying. The best way to do it? Simply click on the reply button in the tweet! But what if people just tweet with out using the reply button? Well all that information gets lost so people wont be able to fully understand what you are saying.

Below is a screen shot of the Twitter website where you can see I am talking with Liz Gunner (@lizgunner) about a trip to the Barossa Valley. On the left of the image you can see Liz’s tweet in response to mine, you can also clearly see where you click on the reply button and to the right you can see the full conversation by clicking on the arrow button in the cornerTwitter Website reply

The top image is the tweet Liz sent as seen on the iPhone Twitter App (which i use) if you wanted to reply to Liz’s tweet, you would click on the arrow icon on the bottom left of the image.
Twitter iPhone Tweet

If you clicked on the “in reply to…” button you would see the whole conversation (bottom image)

Twitter iPhone conversation

The Quicktip?? Reply to Tweets, don’t just include the @ reply in a new tweet!

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→ 2 CommentsTags: Quick Tips · Twitter

So what’s the difference???

October 7th, 2011 · 2 Comments

When talking twitter, replies (@) and Hashtags (#) are often interchanged with each other and not really given a second thought. But they are 2 totally different actions with different functions
Every Tuesday I consistently harp on (I’m sure to some people’s annoyance) about adding the #agchatoz tag to your tweet so everyone can see what you write, some people don’t include the tag OR they include @AgChatOZ and think that it will get through, which it won’t
so, what is the difference?? Let’s take a look:

Reply (@)

A reply can be used in 2 ways, either to reply to a tweet that has been made (I talk about this in the Quick Tips section) or to get the attention of someone. For example you tweeted out something that you wanted someone else to see or comment on you would include cc and the persons twitter name, eg
‘cc @Sam_Grains’ would be what you include if you have a tweet you want me to see/ comment on.
A Tweet that is a reply or mentions you will show up in your @Mentions tab on your twitter homepage (if using the twitter website).
Where wouldn’t you use an @ reply?

The only places that I wouldn’t use an @ reply are if I was making a general comment that I wanted all my followers to see or I was in a twitter chat with a hashtag and I was involved in the conversation

Hashtags (#)

A Hashtag is a basically a way of categorising tweets, Hashtags can be used to explain certain tweets (eg #FF [for follow friday] or #IHateMondays).
The other thing hashtags are used for is participating in chats (eg #agchatoz). The reason that hashtags are so good for chats is that you might not follow all the people involved in the chat but still want to see what they have to say and engage with them during the chat
Clicking on a hashtag in any tweet will show you all other Tweets with that hashtag, great for when you see something and dont know what it is, all you have to do is click on it and see!
But I responded, why didn’t my tweet show?
Most people relpy to a tweet sent (especially from the @AgChatOZ acct) in a twitter chat and then they think it will show up in the tweet stream, (as shown below) but quite simply it wont! The reason is that you have replied and not included the hashtag that Twitter is looking for to display the information. Think of it like having a ticket to an event, if you don’t have a ticket then you cant get in to the event, simply by using the hashtag in your tweet, you get the ticket to enter!

Below is the Tweet stream from the Twitter website, there is one thing that connects everyone of these tweets, can you see what it is? (Click on the image to enlarge and get a better view)
That’s correct, each tweet has ‘#agchatoz’ in it somewhere. The other little detail to keep in mind is that I have set the stream to receive ‘All’ tweets (Just under the name of the stream ), twitter defaults to ‘Top’ which isn’t helpful with participating in a chat
This is a common problem in AgChatOZ every week and it’s simply because there are new people joining the chat. For new people who are trying to engage but don’t see their tweets come up like the others it must be frustrating and a potential turn off, which of course we don’t want

Remember, if you you cant figure something out online, just ask! There are plenty of people that will help you!

Please feel free to tell me in the comments if you think I have it totally wrong or what other topics you would like to see covered like this

~ Feel free to leave me a comment, if you cant see the spam picture, just enter any 6 letter/number combo in the box, and submit, it should work! ~

→ 2 CommentsTags: Social Media · Twitter

The Twitter Snob?

September 21st, 2011 · 8 Comments

I recently had a conversation with a person relatively new to twitter about following people. I mentioned my view that you dont need to follow everyone that follow’s you, which brought up the question from my friend “So are you a Twitter snob then?”

I had a little think about it and replied that I was! I’ll explain why below:
(Now before I start i need to mention that im referring to my @Sam_Grains account here, I have 5 Twitter accounts all for different things)

  1. It’s MY Twitter account! The main reason I dont follow everyone that follows me is because I dont want to, I can’t engage with the 200+ people I follow now, I have more followers than that so how can I effectively engage with those people and add some vale to their stream? Well I cant, so I wont
  2. The second reason is that I dont have auto-follow enabled (I recommend that you dont either) and I Dont have time to see every new follower, im tweeting!! I try to make a point every week or so (well more the so at this time) to say Hi to my new followers, it doesnt mean you need to follow them, just that you need to be nice
  3. Im not a nice person! Simple, sometimes I dont follow people because I dont like what they say, im not going to follow someone who isn’t going to add value to me, just like i wouldnt expect people to follow me if they didnt get some value out of it. But as i said im selfish…..
  4. Ive had a look at your last couple of tweets (usually last 10-15) and seen your profile (including your Bio!!) and ive decided that you dont tweet enough about things im interested in for this acct,
  5. The last reason that I dont follow people is simply because I dont know they are on Twitter!! If you are new to Twitter (or not) and want me to follow you, the best way to start going about it is to engage with me, send me a tweet saying hi and start a conversation, the worst thing that will happen is that I will say Hi back!

The best thing about Twitter is that you dont have to follow anyone at all!

And if you do follow someone thats starts saying something that you dont agree with, just “un-follow” them. you dont need to be confrontative or rude, you simply just need to click a button, its that easy

But the most important thing to remember? Its your Twitter stream, and life is what you make it so why would you follow people that you dont enjoy and can add some value to your life?

Love to hear your comments below

Sam

~ Feel free to leave me a comment, if you cant see the spam picture, just enter any 6 letter/number combo in the box, and submit, it should work! ~

→ 8 CommentsTags: Social Media · Twitter

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