Lists with a Twist: How to herd influencers with Twitter Lists

We all know Twitter is great for expanding the social reach of a company. You may have also heard of Twitter Lists, a feature that’s been a part of Twitter for years but has been somewhat under-utilized. Well, no longer. Here’s a primer on Twitter Lists, and how to leverage them to reach prime movers, social influencers and community leaders for your business or client.

WHAT ARE TWITTER LISTS?

Twitter lists are a public or private collection of Twitter handles that you create from within your Twitter account. You give the Twitter list a name, and add Twitter names to the list that are related in some way.

Find your existing Twitter lists under the More dropdown list after logging in to Twitter.

Lists with a Twist: How to herd influencers with Twitter Lists
Here are your existing Twitter lists, if any.

HOW DO I ADD SOMEONE TO A TWITTER LIST?

Click Following at the top, then find someone you’re following that you’d like to put on a list. Click the gear icon next to their picture.

Click Add or Remove from Lists…

Lists with a Twist: How to herd influencers with Twitter Lists
Click the gear, then click Add or Remove from Lists…

Select the list you’d like to add them to, or create a new list.

Lists with a Twist: How to herd influencers with Twitter Lists
Select the list that most closely matches this person.

Close this screen. Done!

Note that you do not have to be following someone to add them to a list. Find that same gear icon on their Twitter profile instead. You can build Twitter lists full of people that you’d rather not have on your timeline at all — such as accounts that are too large to follow back.

TWITTER LISTS: WHAT ARE THEY GOOD FOR?

Notifications

When you add a Twitter user to a public list, that person is notified that you added them, as well as what list you added them to. This is a good way to alert that person that you exist, and hopefully induce a follow on that person’s part.

Searchable

Your list is also indexed by Google, so someone searching for “Indianapolis Colts Twitter accounts” or “Indianapolis law firms on Twitter” might find a list you created. That person could follow you, or might follow a bunch of people on your list. This can really strengthen ties in business with partners, associates, clients or potential clients.

Filtering

When you click on a list you’ve created, you’ll see a Twitter timeline featuring tweets that are only in that list. If you have a large Twitter follow list, this is a great way to filter things down and read recent Tweets that are part of this exclusive club you’ve created.

Lists with a Twist: How to herd influencers with Twitter Lists
Here’s a timeline with just people in a Twitter list.

Subscribing

If someone else shares the URL of a Twitter list with you, click Subscribe in the upper left after you go to the list. Now their list will show up on your account too! This is a great way to collect lists of people that are important to you or your business.

Promoting

You can use Google Shortener (http://www.goo.gl) or another URL shortener to shorten the name of your Twitter list, then tweet it out to your followers with an explanation. You can even promote this tweet in Twitter advertising. That way, your list will get a lot of subscribers, and the people on your list will gain followers.

You Can’t Do That

Unfortunately, you can’t download a Twitter list you’ve created into a text file for use in advertising. (You can’t upload a list into Twitter Ads audiences, either, which is a much-wanted feature.)

You also can’t tweet at a Twitter List exclusively, another fantastic missing feature that we really hope gets added to Twitter someday. Since Twitter seems to be moving toward curated Feeds like Facebook does, maybe that feature isn’t too far off.

GET INTO THE HABIT

As you follow influencers on Twitter, get into the habit of adding them to existing lists and creating new lists, if necessary, so that all your followers are part of one list or another. It will make the people you’ve chosen to follow feel special (and maybe they’ll do the same for you), help you organize your social all-stars, and allow others to find lists you’ve created in Google searches.

Curating Twitter Lists is just one of many things that StrataBlue provides. Get in touch with us about how we can help your business reach more.