All About Twitter…

Dear Brian,
What are some epic tweets?

Out of 10 billion tweets, something must stand out from the noise. Please note what ‘epic’ means; it does NOT mean a funny tweet.

There are plenty. Here are a few of my favorites:

There was the time the CIA joined Twitter only to be almost immediately trolled by Wikileaks…Wikileaks CIA Tweet

As a whistleblower myself, I was pretty excited to find Edward Snowden on Twitter (as were two million other people). Although technically the most epic part about this tweet is the only account Snowden follows is the NSA…

Snowdens First Tweet

When the power went out during the 2013 Super Bowl, Oreo tweeted one of the most epic brand tweets of all time…

Oreo Super Bowl Tweet

Of course, we can’t forget about the first ever tweet, which was from Twitter founder Jack Dorsey…

Jack Dorsey First Tweet Ever

When Pope Francis joined Twitter, his first tweet was pretty epic. Not so much for the content itself (translates to “We have Pope Francis”), but for the fact that the friggin Pope was embracing the social media site…


There’s also the first tweet from space, which was followed by a pretty epic conversation with William Shatner, aka Star Trek’s Captain Kirk…

First Tweet from Space

And of course, there’s the famous PR stunt orchestrated by Samsung when Ellen live tweeted from the Oscars (although Samsung didn’t get credited and missed out on a huge branding opportunity)…

Ellen Degeneres Oscar Tweet

Of course I’m also a bit partial to my own tweets. One of my most popular was during the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony when a McDonalds ad popped up…

Doc Versable McDonalds Tweet

And there was my most stolen tweet, which has become a meme and been used throughout the years on people’s Facebook and Twitter feeds…

Doc Versable You from the Future Tweet Doc Versable You from the Future Tweet Theft

If you ever hear someone say they feel like grabbing a random kid by the shoulders and screaming, “I’m you from the future!” know it originated from my Twitter account.

Dear Brian,
What are live tweeting shows?

Now that Twitter is so popular, most of Hollywood is doing their best to integrate it into their shows. You’ll often see news and talk shows scroll tweets at the bottom of the screen that are relevant to what they’re talking about. In order to do that, they need people on the staff live-tweeting along with the shows.

So, as part of the promotions for many TV shows, actors will often tweet related information (sometimes even in character) while the show is airing to encourage fans to discuss the show and raise online ratings. The idea is that if someone didn’t know about a show (or didn’t know it was happening), seeing it trend on Twitter could encourage them to tune in.

This has become pretty a pretty standard part of television and social media marketing these days, though it’s arguable how effective it actually is in drawing in viewers.

Dear Brian,
Which apps show the top tweets from across Twitter?

There are tons of these type of apps. Third-party apps are among the aspects of Twitter that make it so popular, though now that it has shareholders to answer to, Twitter often tries to provide these services itself to keep you on their site.

Many people use Favstar to browse through the most popular tweets. You have to provide the site access to your account to do much more than search, but it’s still a useful site. If you pay for the premium service, you can even award people a digital trophy for “Top Tweet of the Day,” and as a free user, you can search these top tweets.

Buzzsumo is a great app for finding the top tweets about any particular keyword or topic. You can see what gets retweeted most often, find trends, and learn who the most influential people are on any given subject.

Buffer (itself a great Twitter app) has a comprehensive list of other useful Twitter apps for discovery, trending, following, and more.



Brian Penny is a former Business Analyst and Operations Manager at Bank of America turned whistleblower, troll, and freelance writer.

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