What Is a Tweetstorm?

All about serial Tweets and when to use them

The term "Tweetstorm" (not Tweet Storm) was coined and made famous by Marc Andreessen, the noted Silicon Valley investor and entrepreneur. A Tweetstorm is a way to share thoughts and comments that are too long for the 280 character limit for single Tweets.

Advantages and Disadvantages of a Tweetstorm

A Tweetstorm is series of tweets from one person that starts with a number and a slash. The first number is the order in which the tweet appears in a line of tweets covering a single topic. The number after the slash is the number of tweets from the same author.

A Tweetstorm lets readers know how many tweets to expect. On the surface, this seems like a great idea, but it has gained some controversy.

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The primary argument against the Tweetstorm is that Twitter is designed for short bursts of sharing information or opinion. A series of tweets from one person, especially a lengthy series, may be viewed as spammy. No one likes spam, and this could be an easy way to lose followers.

However, the occasional Tweetstorm has a place. One case might be a newscaster tweeting about a tornado warning or a broadcaster live-tweeting the Puppy Bowl.

Twitter is known for conveying small nuggets of information and short conversations. It's easy to see why the Tweetstorm used to be viewed as controversial and spammy. But recent Twitter redesigns have made room for Tweetsorms or serials so that they do not spam or take up space on users' timelines.

Why Should I Tweetstorm?

This question is not so easily answered. Do you rarely run out of your allotted 280 characters when tweeting? If so, you may never need to do a Tweetstorm. Do you edit most of your tweets to fit into Twitter's format? Maybe this is for you. As with most things, this is not necessarily an all-or-nothing approach.

How to Post a Tweetstorm

Twitter facilitates Tweetstorms or serial Tweets. When composing a new Tweet, select the + icon (found in the lower-right corner of the Twitter app or next to the Tweet button on the Twitter desktop site).

You can compose a series of Tweets and publish the series all at once by selecting Tweet All. If you prefer to post one at a time, post your first tweet, then add subsequent Tweets by replying to the first one.

  • How do I schedule a Twitter thread?

    Use Tweetsmaps to schedule Twitter threads. Compose your tweets and select PowerSchedule. Some other Twitter client tools offer a similar feature.

  • What is a subtweet?

    A subtweet, or a subliminal tweet, is a Twitter post that references another user without mentioning their @username or real name. Subtweeting is often used to comment on someone while keeping their identity vague so that no one will (probably) figure out who you're talking about.

  • How do I link to a tweet?

    Go to the tweet and select the Share icon (the box with an up-arrow). Then, in the pop-up menu, select Copy link to Tweet to copy the URL to your clipboard.

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