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Twitter Lists – How Do You Use Yours?

Twitter lists

Twitter is one of the most popular social media sites on the web for individuals and business owners, I know it’s my favourite. Twitter is a really useful tool in promotion and marketing, however, to get the most out of Twitter you’ll probably need to organise your feed and the easiest way to do this is through Lists.

What is a Twitter List?

Essentially, a Twitter List is a subset of the Twitter accounts you follow. The members of the List are linked by a common thread. You may have, for example, one list for personal contacts, one for business contacts, one for news related tweets and another for research resources.

Why Create a Twitter List?

There are a number of reasons why Twitter lists can be quite helpful in increasing the efficiency of how you handle your social media efforts.

Separation: Many of us have separate groups of friends, family, people we do business with and so forth. By separating them into individual lists, it becomes easy to see who has tweeted you recently. This is especially true if you follow hundreds of accounts or more. Having them separated into lists solves that issue as you can now read new tweets from those you follow more easily.

Subject Matter: You can create lists specific to certain subject matter. In this way you can reference a particular subject you like quickly and easily. This can be especially helpful for those in business, researching ideas or if you have specific interests that you enjoy keeping up with.

Time: You may receive tweets from businesses that offer discounts or coupons good only for a limited time. Having these separated into their own lists can help you find these discounts or offers quickly so you can react to them in a timely manner.

What’s the Downside?

There are a few limits Twitter have imposed for the purposes of reliability:

  • 20 lists permitted per user (you can get around this by following other people lists)
  • 500 users permitted per list
  • List names cannot exceed 25 characters
  • List names cannot begin with a numerical character

One thing to note is that Lists are used for reading Tweets only. It’s not like email marketing where you can send specific content to a list, you can’t send specific messages to members of a twitter list.

How to Set Up a Twitter List

The first step is to make sure that you are logged into your Twitter account.

  1. Go to your Lists page. This can be done via the gear icon drop down menu in the top right navigation bar or by going to your profile page and clicking on Lists.
  2. Click Create list.
  3. Enter the name of your list, a short description of the list, and select if you want the list to be private (only accessible to you) or public (anyone can subscribe to the list).
  4. Click Save list.
  5. Repeat each of these steps until you have all the names you want added.

Adding or removing people from Twitter Lists

  1. Click the gear icon drop down menu on a user’s profile.
  2. Select Add or remove from lists.
  3. A pop-up will appear displaying your created lists. Check the lists you would like to add the user to, or uncheck the lists you’d like to remove the user from.
  4. To check to see if the user you wanted to add was successfully included in that list, navigate to the Lists tab on your profile page. Click the desired list, then click Members. The person will appear in the list of members.

One sneaky little thing to note is that you don’t have to “follow” a particular account in order to add the user to a list.

So, having seen how to organise your Twitter feed with Lists, and more importantly the benefit of doing so, why not share below what your tips and tricks are for Lists for and how they benefit you.