If you’re new to Twitter, there are a few basic features you should know how to use. When posting, you should understand the differences between different post types and how to use them correctly.
Remember: When a username is preceded by the @ sign, it becomes a link to a Twitter profile.
Here are the different Twitter Posts you can use:
A Tweet is a message with less than 140 characters posted to Twitter.
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Who can see it: Anyone who is following you (the sender) will see the Tweet in their Home stream.
A mention is used when you want to include someone in a conversation or you want to highlight someone in your post.
Who can see it: Anyone on Twitter who is following you (the sender of a mention) will see the Tweet in their Home stream.
Twitter handles tweets that start with @username differently than it does those that place the @username somewhere else. If you start a message with @username, it’s considered a “Reply”. Replies are directed specifically to one Twitter user.
Who can see it: If you send a Reply, only the ones following both the sender and the recipient of a @reply will see it in their Home stream unless they visit the sender’s Profile page. So, most replies will only be seen by a small number of people.
A retweet is a re-posting of someone else’s Tweet to your followers.
Note: There are two possible ways to retweet a post. From the official Twitter retweet option or by using “RT@username”. Unlike when using most third-party application, when you retweet directly from Twitter you won’t be able to edit the retweet or add any comments. Read more on RT Versus Official Twitter Retweets: How Are They Different?
Who can see it: Anyone on Twitter who is following you (the sender of a retweet) will see the Tweet in their Home stream.
A direct message (DM) is a private message sent via Twitter. You can only send a direct message to a user who is following you and you can only receive direct messages from users you follow.
Starting a tweet with “d @user” or “dm @user” turns it into a direct message as long as that user already follows you.
Who can see it: Only the sender and the recipient will see the direct message.