So you know on our blog we try to offer the latest and greatest digital tools you guys can use to help your reporting. One great journalism tool from Twitter is the ability to embed a Tweet on a website on or a blog.

As Charlene Kingston noted in Social Media Examiner article, “8 Ways to Use Embeddable Tweets,” embedding Tweets is an awesome way to cross-pollinate your online communications. It’s also an easier way to carry your news story from one social network to another intact without missing a beat. No need for those annoying screen shots or cutting and pasting and hoping you got all of the words in tact. Or being accused of making up a Twitter feed.

But we found some great ways you can use embedded Tweets to your advantage as a reporter. Before embedding any Tweet you have to do your homework and as any good reporter knows you don’t publish anything you can’t verify. So make sure the Twitter feed you’re quoting is authentic and not a “fake,” Twitter stream. Now that, that’s cleared up here are some great uses of Twitter’s cool new feature.

#1. Use it to Quote a Source. Any digital reporter worth his or her salt should be following the people, places and industries on their beat on all social networks but especially Twitter. The real-time, 140-character, Tweet-machine has a kind of Svengali effect on its users allowing most of them in a bid to be authentic to say some pretty interesting things. With embed Tweet you can take a Tweet by a source and embed it in your online story, blog or website. To be completely ethical I’d make sure they know you’re going to use it. (You don’t have to do this, especially when you specify the Tweet came from the source’s Twitter feed but it’s just good manners). You may turn a no-comment into an illuminating conversation by embedding a source’s Tweet as a quote.

#2. Promote Your Article. In addition to embedding a current Tweet you can also use code to ask people to Tweet an embedded Tweet which adds to your Twitter feed promotion. One internet marketer found that embedding Tweets boosted his post promotion by 27%.

#3. Use it as Corroborating Proof. Everyone says things in anger, sadness or fear that they wouldn’t like published. Witness social media king brought low Ashton Kutchner virtual-career ending Tweet about the child molestation scandal at Penn State. He stepped away from Twitter after that. But as journalists we’re so used to people saying that we’ve taken their quotes out of context…now you have a way to permanently record what a person has said or believes by using an embedded Tweet. And the Tweet stays around even if it’s “deleted,” later thanks to the embed code. Just be careful because what you use to sink someone can also sink you if it isn’t true.

#4. Adds Context to Stories – The best thing about Twitter is that so many people are using it. Now you can easily add the voices of people all over the globe to your online article, blog post or website.  Sure you can do it by e-mail but it looks more authentic when the reader can see the quote is in the person’s own Twitter feed. As always with Twitter make sure the feed you’re embedding is actually the person represented in the account and we suggest a friendly acknowledgement to them that you’re using their Tweet in your story.

#5. Adds Real-Time Information to Global News Stories – Twitter has always been great for on-the-ground reporting and embedding Tweets allows you to cover many different areas of a news event without actually having to be there. No travel budget needed. Just cool contacts with Twitter.

So play around with this new feature and let us know what you think!

HOW TO EMBED A TWEET

  1. Find the Tweet you want to embed on Twitter.
  2. Click on “Open” in the far right-hand corner.
  3. Click on “Details” and the Tweet will take over your entire screen.
  4. Click on “Embed this Tweet”,
  5. Grab the HTML code or if you’re using cool platform like WordPress grab the Shortcode or link and paste it in your blog.
Test this Tweet tool by Tweeting this!  We did!

How are you using the embed a Tweet feature?

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