Twitter is a busy place – every day, its 200 million active users send over 400 million tweets.

Even if you only follow 100 people, in the time it took you to read that sentence, your Twitter feed could have loaded another five tweets….  It’s not all relevant, and it’s impossible (and unnecessary) to read it all, but some of it could be important.

Twitter lists for business

Twitter is fast moving and can flood your feed with so many updates that you miss the important ones

What if your biggest client just posted a tweet about a major company restructure, and your laptop battery was flat so you missed it?

Or your main competitor just announced a new product launch and you were on the phone?

Twitter has a simple solution to this problem, which is free, easy to set-up, and even easier to use – enter: Twitter lists.  This simple tool makes it easy to organise all the people you follow, so you can view small groups of tweets rather than the fast-moving and densely populated news feed.

1.  To get started, click the cog in the top right hand corner of your Twitter page, and select ‘Lists’ from the dropdown menu:

how to use twitter lists, how to create a twitter list

Create your own Twitter list by clicking the cog in the right hand corner of your Twitter page

2.  You may want to create a Twitter list for the following:

  • clients/customers – reply to and share their tweets, building your relationship with them
  • competitors – monitor what messages they are sending out about themselves and what others are saying about them
  • resources/news/updates – keep up with any breaking news or information that your followers should know about

Create your new list, give it a name, and choose whether you want it to be public (so other people can find it and follow it) or private (so nobody but you can access it – probably a good idea for your ‘Clients‘ list…)

twitter management tools

Create lists for any key groups that post content you want to follow

3.  Once you have created your list, add people who fit that group

You can either search by name or scroll through all those who you’re ‘Following’ – once you find someone who you’d like on your list, simply add them by clicking the small black silhouette next to their name, and select ‘Add or remove from lists’.  Click your chosen list, then click the ‘x’ to close the box.

Keep adding people one at a time using the same technique.

how to use twitter lists

Add people to your chosen list one by one by clicking the black head next to their name

4.  Now enjoy a streamlined list of tweets

To view tweets from all the people on your newly created list, simply click ‘Lists’ from the drop down cog in the top right of your screen.

Click the title of your list to enjoy the simplicity of a stream of tweets showing all the highlights.

And in the time it took me to read this article through one last time, Twitter loaded another 158 tweets – time to check my lists….

What tricks help you monitor your social networks?  I’d love to hear about them in the comments or over on Twitter.