Just wanted to take a second and let everyone know that we here at Market Folly have been posting over at Twitter and StockTwits for some time now and if you aren't already, you should definitely follow our posts there. Why? Because we post up our portfolio activity there, as well as unique market insight that is not featured here on the blog. (Cliff's Notes on how to follow us listed at the bottom of this post).
What is Twitter?
Twitter is a service for friends, family, and co-workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing?
It is essentially a mini-blog where you post messages that are 140 characters in length. Think of it as blogging meets texting meets facebook status updates meets instant messenger. You can post up your thoughts, converse with people, and "follow" each others posts by clicking the follow button on their page. Here is Market Folly's Twitter page: Follow Us! (And, if you haven't noticed, our Twitter updates are posted on the right-side column of the blog as well). In order to follow us, all you have to do is sign-up for Twitter for free. And, there's also another reason to sign-up for Twitter.
What is StockTwits?
StockTwits is an application linked to Twitter specifically geared for those interested in trading, investing, and markets. (Check out the WSJ press coverage & the 'how to' guide). Basically, a huge community has sprouted up on Twitter that talks about all things financial markets. Stocktwits is where this happens. Included in this community are well known traders/investors like Doug Kass, Eric Bolling, James Altucher, Paul Kedrosky, Howard Lindzon, and many more. There's also a large amount of prominent financial bloggers on there as well. Simply put, its an awesome community full of knowledgeable and helpful people.
In order to participate, just sign up for Twitter and make sure you "follow" @StockTwits and @marketfolly. Fill in your bio and add a picture so we can get an idea of who you are or how you trade/invest. After you've signed up, go to StockTwits and log in with your information. Poke around and take it all in so you can see how everything works. There's some great tutorials on their site and blog. Then, when you're ready, start to interact and contribute.
There's two ways to participate in the market talk. First, if you're talking about an individual company/ticker, just preface the ticker with a '$' sign. For instance, AAPL becomes $AAPL. This ensures your message is picked up by the community. If you just have general market commentary without a specific ticker, add a '$$' to the very beginning or the very end of your message. For instance: $$ The banking system is insolvent. Or: The market is doomed $$. Note that if you mention a ticker prefaced by the '$' in your post, you don't need to use the $$. You can also talk about futures and forex, and that info is covered on the StockTwits blog.
The easiest way to learn is to observe for a little bit and then to jump right in, as people will help you along the way. If you're confused, you can read some of the articles we've linked to below which help to explain everything.
In the end, there's really only 3 steps:
We'll be posting a follow-up with some more specifics on how you can really utilize Twitter and StockTwits. If you have any questions at all, feel free to email us (marketfolly at gmail dot com) and we'll help you get started out. Now, hurry up and find out what you've been missing out on!
- StockTwits 'How to' Guide
- Wall Street Journal article on StockTwits
- MSN Money / Twitter's New Status: Investing Tool
- Macro talk on StockTwits