I want to spend a few minutes today discussing Twitter Lingo. What is it? The style of communication that people on Twitter use when talking to each other to be more effective with the 140 characters that they have to speak to their followers. So let your lesson in Twitter lingo begin:

Tweet- Most people have heard about a Tweet, but for those who have not it is the 140 character update on your status. The word Tweet can also be used in the plural as in Tweets for when you are writing a number of Tweets.

Tweeting- The act of writing Tweets.

Hashtag-A hashtag is # and then a word/acronym followed after it. The entire purpose is to attract people who would be interested in a particular topic. For example, if you are talking about Twitter you can use #twitter and people can either search it on Twitter search or use an application such as TweetDeck or Hootsuite to find people discussing #twitter. Think of it as Twitter GPS. The people who want to find your tweet about the subject will.

RT- Retweet is the act of repeating another Twitter users Tweet while giving credit to the original Tweeter. For example, RT @smartatthestart …… give credit to Smart At The Start for a post they made. Another example from the land of pure outright blatant requests is please RT this blog post. Had to ask.

@- When you put the @ symbol in front of Twitter users name it means that they were mentioned. The reason this is important is because the user being discussed can find their name listed in the mention section of their Twitter page. The @ symbol is the reason why people can communicate with each other individually on Twitter. Otherwise, we would never know if someone was talking to us. You can also reply to people’s Tweets to you with the @reply to continue the conversation.

#FF- Follow Friday is every Friday where you give a shout out to other Tweeters you believe should be followed by your followers.

URL Shortener- Services, such as bit.ly, su.pr, and ow.ly help Twitter users include links to other websites or blogs. Instead of having to type in the entire website url, which could almost end up being 140 characters in some cases, you go to the above mentioned shortner services and have them shorten the domain name into a feasible length. It allows you to include some information along with the link as well.

Now that you are a master Tweeter, start using the lessons learned here to begin making connections. There are more Twitter terms that you will pick up as you go, and at the same time the ones listed above are the most common Twitter lingo terms for you to know to successfully Tweet. Tweet away!