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Community Champion

#InstCon Twitter Challenge: Up Your Twitter Game!

Twitter is a great tool for all kinds of purposes... including conferences! I've created this 10-Step Up-Your-Twitter-Game Challenge both for Twitter newbies and Twitter experts to make sure you are ready for #InstCon either as an on-site or a remote participant.

So... when you complete this 10 steps (do them one a day or do them all at once: whatever you want!), leave a comment here and I will issue a "Good Work!" badge for 100 points. I've got a heap of points to give away, and using those points to up people's Twitter game for InstructureCon would be my pleasure!

Ready for more? Build your own InstCon Resource course... you can include a Twitter feed in one of those pages for example.

The InstCon Canvas Course Challenge! 

And now, here are the 10 steps, which I've arranged into 4 groups. Screenshots and step-by-steps are for desktop Twitter, but you can do all these things with the Twitter app on your phone.

What have I forgotten? Let me know what other Twitter tips and tricks you would recommend:

GET STARTED. It's easy, I promise!

1. ACCOUNT. If you are new to Twitter, set up an account at If you already have an account, easy-peasy: you can move on to the next item.

2. PROFILE. Complete your profile or, if you already had an account, tinker with your existing profile. You might change the header banner, or maybe update your tagline. I added #IinstCon to my tagline for example, and picked out a new header photo for the lazy days of summer.

screenshot of Twitter profile

3. TWEET WITH #INSTCON. The official hashtag for InstructureCon is #InstCon (no year, just #InstCon). Go ahead and tweet something with that hashtag. Are you attending onsite? Remotely? Have you attended in the past? Tell us more! All that fits in 280 characters. Here are my latest #InstCon tweetsJust click on the Tweet button in the upper right-hand corner to compose, and then hit "tweet" (you can add pictures with the picture icon in the lower left):

tweet form

GET CONNECTED. There are lots of people to connect with, and lots of ways to find them.

4. FOLLOW SOME PEOPLE. One fun way to find people to follow is to look at who someone else is following and find people that way. So, start by finding one person you know at Twitter, and then click on the "Following" number to see a detailed display of who they follow. Maybe you will want to follow some of the same people! Here is the detailed display of who I follow (although I also use a lot of lists instead of follows... more on that below).

5. PING SOMEONE IN A TWEET. Use the @ symbol to ping someone in a tweet, or you can just reply to a tweet (when you reply, it automatically includes the @ symbol). If you want to ping me, I'm @OnlineCrsLady. I'll ping you back by replying!

The reply is the speech-bubble icon at the bottom left of any tweet:

twitter reply icon

And when someone pings/replies to you, that shows up as a notification, which is the little bell icon along the top of the Twitter display:

twitter notifications icon

You're half-way there: 5 steps done; 5 to go. Now it's time to LEARN AND SHARE WHAT YOU LEARN. Twitter is all about connected learning!

6. EXPLORE #INSTCON HASHTAG. To see what's going on with a hashtag, just type #InstCon (or any hashtag) into the search box. Alternatively, you can just click on the hashtag in any tweet. Notice that when you look at a hashtag results, you can opt to see Top OR Latest tweets plus some other options. It defaults to "top" but personally I find the "latest" view most useful. Cruising through a hashtag is another great way to find people to follow. Here's the "latest" for #InstCon:

latest #InstCon at Twitter

7. RETWEET SOMETHING. When you retweet something, you can just retweet it as is, or you can add your own comment to the tweet. Either way is good! Twitter is all about tweeting and retweeting, and when someone follows you, they will see both your tweets and your retweets. To retweet, just click on the recycle icon along the bottom of any given tweet (see screenshot above). 

retweet screenshot

GET ORGANIZED. Remember: you are in control! Bookmarks, lists, and moments are the keys for me. 

8. BOOKMARK A SEARCH. Any search result is bookmarkable. So, when you find a useful hashtag or other search, bookmark it!

Here's what the #InstCon search results address looks like:
And here is the address for the #InstCon "Latest" (the view I prefer):
Just like any URL, you can bookmark that address. By saving your moment important Twitter addresses (search addresses, list addresses, etc.) in a bookmarks folder, you can keep your Twitter activity focused and productive. And check out Advanced Search for tons of options -- and I recommend bookmarking that advanced search page for future reference too!

9. CREATE A LIST. Bookmarks help you organize content, and lists help you organize people. Lists also mean no ads, which is a weird miracle of Twitter: reading with lists, you never have to see ads!  You can keep lists private or you can make them public; I use both. Right now I'm creating a list of InstructureCon participants, both remote and on-site... if you want to join that list, let me know! Just tweet me: @OnlineCrsLady and tell me to add you to the list, or fill out this form.

Each list has a URL which you can bookmark too. You can bookmark your own lists, and you can also bookmark other people's public lists. Also, you don't have to be following someone to put them into a list; just click on the three dots to get the add/remote list option for any Twitter account. 

how to add to a Twitter list

10. CREATE A MOMENT. Ignore the stupid name: just think about Moments as being COLLECTIONS of tweets. It's all about staying organized: you can bookmark searches, you can put people in lists, and you can save tweets in Moments. I use Moments to save items to share with my classes for example. And of course I'll be creating some InstructureCon Twitter Moments when the time comes! Just click on the down-arrow in any tweet, and you will get the option to add that tweet to an existing Moment (collection), or to a new Moment. 

screenshot of how to make a moment

Did you do it all, 1 through 10? APPLAUSE! Leave a comment here so I can award you a Twitter badge of honor!

Is something not clear? Please let me know, and I will add more notes.

Tips to share? I've focused here on the Twitter basics that make it a useful tool for me, and it would be great to know what other Twitterati have found to be good Twitter strategies! Chime in below. 

And now.......... TWEET ON, PEOPLE! 

22 Replies
Community Champion

Twitter challenge complete! I was already up to #7 so it wasn't hard Smiley Wink But I have NEVER used Moments, so I have now added that to my Twitter skill set. #keeplearning

Oh,  @tdelillo  this is fantastic! And I am so glad this prompted you to do Moments. I spent forever just ignoring that "Moments" option in the Twitter menu, but when I gave it a try, I was hooked. So useful! You can embed moments in Canvas Pages too! (It's a Twitter widget option.)

Let's see if I can give a badge with points from inside a comment; if not, I'll go do that separately.  @tdelillo  Congratulations

Okay, badge but no points. I'll go do the points now. YAY!!!!!!

Community Participant

Nice challenge; I guess Moments came after I stopped wanting to learn new Twitter stuff, cause I'd honestly never heard of that before. Hooray for learning! Since only half our Canvas team will be at the conference this year, I think I'll try to use Moments to... justify sending everybody in the future. Or something.

Hopefully the WiFi will be stable enough that I'll be able to tweet from my iPad, since I do much better with that in sessions than using my phone.

I am glad to be spreading the word about Moments! When Storify announced it was biting the dust, Moments got some more attention as possible Storify replacement (although Storify was GREAT... I will miss it).

Just how to share the InstCon experience with others is exactly the challenge; if wifi is not cooperating for real-time sharing, there's always sharing afterwards too. I created an open Canvas course where I am going to try to archive stuff, both the preliminaries leading up to the conference, during, and after 🙂

InstCon Remote Control

I wish I had set up a curation space like that for last year; even though I was attending remotely, I collected so much good stuff from following the Twitter. I am very excited about attending in person this year!

0 Kudos
Community Champion

Challenge accepted and completed! Getting ready for this year's #InstCon for sure!

Excellent! And now we are connected at Twitter! Tweet on! 🙂

Community Member

I did it! Looking forward to the Con, see you all there. Smiley Happy

Fantastic, Heather! I just did the badge thing. GO TWITTER! 🙂

Community Contributor

Ditto on the Moments. Thanks, Laura!

Yay, ssimpso4‌! And are you going to be at #InstCon in person or are you participating remotely? If you are there, we need to make sure to meet up in person, adding that to our paths crossing here and at Twitter! 🙂

Community Contributor

I'll be remote and I've already requested a Drone service from you! Have a great time in Keystone!

Ohhhh, that will be MY PLEASURE. I am out of town right now so haven't been checking the course space this week, but I will go do that now. Yay!

Got it! That sounds like a wonderful session, ssimpso4‌!

And  @Bobby2 ‌ I saw you are interested in that one too. Perfect! Do you use Twitter? If you do, let me know so that I can  ping you at Twitter. I'll write up notes here at the Community afterwards, but during the actual event I'm guessing Twitter will be my main tool... although if the wifi is rough, I'll take notes in a Google Doc to share later. I've been warned that the InstCon energy can overwhelm the wifi. 🙂

Hi laurakgibbs, thanks for spotting that. Count me in on Twitter. 

Have a blast!

Community Contributor

Done! I didn’t know about Moments. What a cool teaching tool!

Oh,  @akinsey ,  this is making me feel happy that I put Moments in there: it looks like spreading the word about Moments was very worthwhile! I sure wish Twitter had found a better name for that feature because it is so useful... and I'm still not even sure why they called it Moments ha ha. But it is indeed very useful! It's something I have really enjoyed using to curate Twitter content for my classes. 🙂

0 Kudos
Not applicable

Challenge completed! Learned a lot about Twitter 🙂 Thank you!

Community Participant

Challenge Completed! I learned a lot about Twitter 🙂 Thank you for the challenge! 

Excellent,  @sgaboriau  -- I'm so glad it was helpful! I was a latecomer to Twitter, but now I find it so useful for my own learning plus for sharing stuff with my students. Happy tweeting! I will go do the badge thingy now: yay!

Thanks laurakgibbs‌! Great challenge. I had a Moment sitting in draft because I was unsure if I could go back and edit it later; which you can. Great step by step provided above BTW! Totes slayed this challenge.

YAY! I've been playing with Wakelet too, which has better media display than Moments... but it sure is convenient being able to pop things into a Moment right there from the Twitter interface. Now if they would just make media work in Moments like in a regular Twitter timeline... it's one of the mysteries! 🙂


Completed!  #productiveprocrastination from packing Smiley Wink