How to use Tweet threads

By Hayley Dorney
a man sits in his office looking at his phone while his laptop is open on his desk

Thanks to videos, GIFs, photos, and products like Carousel Ads, there are lots of ways to express your message in a Tweet. But what about when you want to use more words and 280 characters aren’t enough? Or you want to update your followers in real-time as a story develops? 

This is where our friend the Twitter thread comes in. Here, we’ve got two examples of how to thread Tweets, plus we’ll share some top threads from a few of our own Twitter accounts for inspiration. 

How to publish a Tweet thread

1. Click the "Tweet" button to compose a new Tweet.

screenshot of how to compose a tweet on twitter by clicking the tweet button

2. Write your first Tweet. Click the "Add another Tweet" button and a second Tweet window will pop up.

3. You can publish the entire thread at the same time with the "Tweet all" button. You can also add a thread to a previously published Tweet using the same "Add another Tweet" button.

screenshot of how to add another tweet to your original tweet but clicking add another tweet

Publishing one Tweet at a time v publishing a full thread

Publishing a thread one Tweet at a time lets your followers feel the excitement of a developing story — perfect for a live event, product launch, or announcing a competition winner.

Publishing an entire thread at once instantly gives your followers a fully-formed story. This is a good Tweet format for a message you want to control a bit more, like a nuanced company announcement, as done by @TwitterBusiness while launching a test of Professional Profiles.

screenshot of twitter business account showcasing the professional profiles launch in a tweet thread

Why Tweet in a thread?

To tell a story, build intrigue, or create suspense

Tweet threads lend themselves really well to creating intrigue and build-up to the climax of a story, or the nitty-gritty of a conversation.

When publishing one Tweet at a time, we recommend waiting about an hour after publishing your first Tweet to publish your second, and waiting another 15 minutes or so to publish your third.

This staggered format will keep bumping your message up people’s timelines, but not with so much of a time gap that they begin to lose interest. 

If you’re publishing a longer-running series or campaign with video or imagery, you can always add your next Tweet days after the first, too. Take @TwitterTogether and their #AlwaysProud series in celebration of Pride, for instance. 

Their first Tweet in the thread featured a video about a personal journey and was followed five days later by another video as part of the series. Each video could of course stand on its own, but when threaded, the message was strengthened.

Resurface or follow up a Tweet

Use a thread to add additional Tweets to re-highlight or follow-up on previously published Tweets. @TwitterSpaces did this every couple of days to continuously highlight notable or interesting Spaces.

If you live-Tweeted an event with a thread, you could reply to it the next day to ask people what they thought and if they had any follow-up questions or discussion points for future events. Following up on threads shows your audience that you’re listening and actively driving the conversation with them. 

Looking for some extra inspiration now you know how to start your own Twitter thread? Take a look at these five creative ways brands can use Twitter threads.

Additional reading: 

Ready to advertise on Twitter?

twitter coffee mug on table