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Posts Tagged ‘what the trend’

Tips to integrate hashtags into daily news coverage

I may be dating myself here, but I remember when Twitter didn’t automatically link @usernames and when #hashtag was a workaround to make disjointed streams of updates easier to find in their clunky search engine.

Well, Twitter has done a good job of integrating those ideas of its users to make the service what it is today. Why shouldn’t news organizations do the same and take the best ideas from their readers and viewers? One great way to gather their feedback and ideas is to integrate hashtags into your coverage. Here’s a few tips on doing that:

1. Have a standard hashtag for your news organization’s daily coverage. It could be #nyt or #cnntv or it could #[city]news or whatever it is (shorter is better) that is easy to remember and relatively easy for Twitter users to identify. Make sure it’s not already in use by someone else — unless they’re talking about your content. Don’t re-invent the wheel: If your community is already using a hashtag to link to your work, latch on and adopt it! Refer to this often in on air, in print and online so people start to associate that hashtag with your brand and your content. Encourage readers to use this tag when they mention your stories or when they have reaction to, questions about or tips for your coverage. Ask your reporters and staff to include the tag on their updates. That way, there is one stream of information you can send readers to for on-going updates without having to follow dozens or more accounts. The top news should make it there, and user story suggestions get that tag. Read more

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Tools of the Day: Blackbird Pie and What The Trend

When breaking news hits the web, chances are you will find out about it on Twitter first. Trending topics can quickly spiral out of control, and these two tools can help you display tweets and sort through the mire of tweets to get to the source of a trend — Blackbird Pie and What The Trend.

Blackbird Pie is a tool for embedding tweets into a page using hypertext. You may have seen this used on our last Tools of the Day post when we discussed sparktweets. Blackbird Pie has primarily been used by Twitter Media on their blog in example posts. Here’s an example tweet generated from the 10,000 Words Twitter account using Blackbird Pie:

AP Stylebook Adds More Social Media Terms (via @mashable)less than a minute ago via TweetDeck Favorite Retweet Reply

The benefits of using Blackbird Pie is that you get some elements of Twitter functionality via the tweet, such as marking it as a favorite, retweeting it, or replying to it. Hashtags are also linked directly to Twitter search, to help you pull in more context.

The downsides of using the tool are that you would need to have a basic knowledge of HTML in order to troubleshoot any copy and paste issues from the tool, and the correct timestamp does not carry over in the pasted tweet. Also, the code provided for these tweets do not work in Tumblr.

Give Blackbird Pie a try and add some fresh-baked tweets to your posts!

Speaking of linked hashtags, What The Trend is just the resource for you when you need to figure out what a specific hashtag means, and to discover why it may be trending at the moment. With over 100,000 trends being tracked from all around the world, What The Trend is the premiere database of hashtag definitions.

What the Trend

You can also discover the top 10 trends at the moment, discover new trends in other countries, and even register your own hashtag for inclusion in the rankings. Journalists can use this tool to not just discover what’s generating buzz at the moment, but can study other successful hashtags to discover tips they could use for their own Twitter campaigns. What The Trend makes discovering this information simple and fun!

Visit them at and sign up for a free account.