#SciFund Challenge Self-Guided Class

Using Twitter to advance your science and your career

Part 1: Getting Set Up with Twitter

Go to twitter.com and hit the sign up button. As you sign up, Twitter will ask for your name and username. Do note that you can change almost any aspect of your Twitter presence, except for one thing: your username (that is, your Twitter handle). So, please be sure that you are satisfied with your username before you register it.

So, what kind of username should you pick? Should you pick one that directly refers to you or your organization? Or are you better off with something more anonymous? Should you provide your real name? The answer to these questions really depend on your communications goals (which you have got nailed down, thanks to the handsome and dashing Audience First material). Generally speaking though, if you're trying to build some kind of direct connection to a potential audience, you're better off using a name/username that isn't anonymous.

During the sign up process, Twitter will ask you for a photo. You should definitely add one, as replacing the default image (below) will make a huge difference in humanizing your account. If you're planning to tweet as yourself or as part of an organization (that is non-anonymously), you should use an image that conveys something about you (a headshot, perhaps?). If you're planning to tweet anonymously, it still makes sense to use a meaning-conveying image (but skip that headshot).

Meet  floating default head.

Multiple other questions for your profile will then be asked by Twitter that you can choose to answer or not. Twitter will also ask you to send your first tweet, which you can skip. The one important thing to fill out is the introduction to you (examples shown below). As you can see from these examples, there isn’t just one way to write this introduction, so go with what seems appropriate to you.

Three is definitely the charm here.