Hi. My name is Adam.

Twitter tips for journalists

Posted in social networking, The Daily Iowan, twitter by adambsullivan on September 2, 2009

1. Gain followers:

• Follow lots of real people: students, local residents, and people who are interested in your area of coverage. Don’t follow lots famous people (@johncmayer and @the_real_shaq) or automated accounts (@nytimes and @andersoncooper).

• Interact with people. Respond to people who way interesting things.

2. Get story ideas:

• Do searches for “Iowa City,” “University of Iowa,” “Hawkeyes,” etc. Tune into what your communities are talking about.

• Read tweets from Iowa Citians. If something is interesting, ask them to tell you more and get their contact information.

• Once you’ve earned a decent number of local followers, ask things like “What should I write about this week?”

3. Promote your stories:

• Good tweets resemble good web heds. Be descriptive and be specific.

• Mention that your story has extras: “Check out this video about…” or “Vote on this poll about…”

4. Be interesting:

• Be a real person. Don’t tweet the same way you write. Let your personality show.

contributing to the discussion, instead of regurgitating what everyone else is saying. You should say things that no other human could say.

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One Response

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  1. […] Some of the tweeps passed along helpful links. London journalist Soraya Kishtwari suggested a post about how Twitter and Facebook were used effectively to spread the word about fund-raising efforts to help victims of the Haiti earthquake. Though it was about fundraising, I could see value in the post for journalists. Marcus Bösch shared a great post by Craig Kanalley on how to verify tweets (one of the most important challenges facing journalists who use Twitter). Adam B. Sullivan of the Daily Iowan passed along a link to his Twitter tips for journalists. […]


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