This post is part of our Twitter for Business: Fundamentals series.

Twitter - Listen First
Image by Alexander Zuban (flickr)

If you’re still fairly new to Twitter, it’s a good idea to spend some time observing others before getting into the conversation. There’s nothing wrong with jumping right in, but listening for a while will help you understand the intricacies of Twitter, how people communicate and etiquette.

Start by finding some similar businesses, industry thought-leaders and friends to follow. This will give you a good sampling of how people use Twitter for different purposes and you’ll probably learn a great deal if you follow interesting people.

Twitter connections are pretty casual and don’t require anyone to ‘accept’ you in order to receive their updates. Don’t worry too much about who you follow initially, it’s very easy to disconnect and find others, for now you just want to get the lay of the land and make some initial connections.

Twitter will recommend some users to follow when you sign-up, or you can use the “find people” button on Later you can use more advanced tools to target people by topics, industry, location, etc.

The absolute quickest way to get the hang of Twitter and its value is to just hang out for a bit and listen.