How to Create and Follow Twitter Profiles

Your Twitter profile is what others will see if they go to your Twitter page. It consists of your Twitter handle (read: user name), your profile picture, and a short paragraph about who you are.

Following Others

Before you create your profile, you’ll need to start by following five people to jumpstart your Home Timeline.

  1. In the welcome bubble on the left hand side, click Next.
  2. Select five people to follow. You can use the recommended list, or if you want to find someone specific, click inside the search bar, type in their name, and press the “Enter” key on your keyboard. When you see someone you’d like to keep tabs on, click Follow beside their name.
  3. Once you’ve followed five people, they’ll show up on the right in a preview of what your timeline will look like once you are all set up!
  4. Now, select Next in the top right hand corner.
  5. Now, select five companies and organizations to follow; it works pretty much the same way as step 2 did.  Choose from your local news network, sports team, TV channel, magazine, and more! Once you’ve chosen, select Next.
  6. Twitter now gives you the option to search your email contacts for anyone who’s already on Twitter – you can choose to skip this step if you’d like.If you want to search for your contacts, select Search Contacts next to the type of email you’re using (Outlook, Gmail, etc).

  7. If you have multiple email accounts that you want to use, you can still select those, but they will prompt you to sign in with your email address and password each time. Once you’ve signed into an email account, you’ll be prompted to give Twitter permission to access your contact list. Click Allow Access.
  8. After your address book has been uploaded, your email contacts that use Twitter will show up in the menu on the left.  From there you can click Follow beside anyone’s name to follow whomever you like. If you don’t want to follow anyone in this list, click Skip.
  9. Once you’re finished, go back to the email account that you used to sign up for Twitter.  Twitter has sent you a welcome email and would like for you to confirm your account. Open the email and click Confirm Your Account Now.

Create Your Profile

Now that you’ve confirmed your account, it’s time to add a photo and short biography to complete your profile.

  1. If Twitter doesn’t automatically let you enter your biography or edit other information, select Edit Profile above the “Who to Follow” section.
  2. Select Upload Image to upload a picture of yourself for your profile photo.  (Just navigate through the explorer windows that come up, click on the picture you want to use to select it, and then click Open.)  Underneath, you can click inside the box labelled “Bio” and type in some information about yourself. Keep it short – you’re only allowed 160 characters. List your hobbies, profession, or favourite movie genre – it’s up to you. Once you’re finished, click Done.
  3. This will take you to your profile page that will show you your bio and profile picture. Here you can click the box marked “Location” and type in the city you currently live in. Also, if you have a website – for example, a traditional web blog or a professional website – you can click the box labelled “Website” and type in its web address.
  4. You can personalize your profile page some more by changing the theme colour. Select Theme Color and play around, clicking both the window on the left and the bar on the right to find the colour you like best! Click Done when you’ve finished.
  5. Here you can also add a header photo that will be displayed. Click Add a Header Photo, navigate through the explorer windows that open until you find the picture you want to use, click it to select it, and then click Open.When you’re done making changes, click Save Changes on the right.

  6. Once you’re done, your profile page will look something like this.  The numbered legend below the screenshot will introduce you to some of the elements on the page.

    1. Home – This will take you to your personal homepage, where you’ll see your Home Timeline, with all the tweets of the people you’re following.

    2. Notifications – This takes you to your notifications page. It will show you any new notifications you have – whether someone mentioned you in a tweet or retweeted what you said, it will all show up here.

    3. Messages – Send a direct (and private) message or check to see if you’ve received any! See our Twitter Direct Messaging tutorial to learn more.

    4. Discover -These are tweets tailored to you based on websites you’ve visited that are linked to Twitter, as well as other Twitter pages you’ve visited. This is a good way to explore the Twitterverse and find more interesting things to follow!

    5. Search – Search a word or phrase, or someone you want to follow on Twitter, by clicking on the search bar and typing in what you’re looking for.  Then press the “Enter” key.

    6. Profile Picture – Click here to get help with Twitter, change your settings, or sign out. You can also see what lists you have or compose a new one. A list is a way to organize the people you’re following. Categorize sports into one list, fashion into another, etc. We might have a tutorial on how to use lists on Twitter in the future, so stay tuned!

    7. Compose – Click here to compose a new tweet. See our How to Tweet tutorial for further instructions.

    8. Tweets, Following, Followers, and Favorites – The “Tweets” menu will show you all of the posts you’ve made on Twitter. “Following” shows you all of the people whose activity you’re following on Twitter. “Followers” is a list of Twitter users who are following your activity. And “Favorites” is a list of tweets that you’ve marked as “favorite.”


    9. Who To Follow – Take a quick look here for a few of Twitter’s recommendations on whose tweets you may want to track.

    10. Trends – Trends are the most popular hashtags on Twitter right now.  This is an up-to-date list of what’s trending right now. Click one of the links to be taken to a timeline containing tweets by everyone who’s been mentioning that hashtag.


And that’s a quick overview of how to set up your profile on Twitter!