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Social media and research impact

How social media can help increase the impact of your research

"...if you want people to read your papers, make them open access, and let the community know (via blogs, twitter, etc) where to get them. Not rocket science. But worth spending time doing. Just dont develop a stats habit." - Melissa Terras, University College London


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Twitter can help you share your research with a larger audience, connect with potential collaborators, and raise your academic profile. To get the most out of Twitter here are some simple things that you can do. 

Find your tribe

Find others in your field on Twitter, whether they are researchers, journalists or professional bodies. Follow them and reply to their tweets, starting a conversation and helping you to stay up to date and identify potential collaborators. If they follow you back you have an engaged audience that is interested in your research, and will help you disseminate it.

Use hashtags

Hashtags help people monitor conversations on Twitter, and find information they are interested in quickly and easily. Search for some hashtags that might apply to your work and use them when you tweet. There are also some general academic hashtags you might like to use and monitor.

Link to your work

If you are tweeting about your latest article in the Conversation for example, then include a link to the website.  If you are tweeting about your latest publication, then always try and link to an Open Access copy, such as the ePrints version. In ePrints you will find a Twitter button that will allow you to create a link to your work for you to tweet. This link will include the DOI which is important for your ‘altmetric score. Talk to your Liaison Librarian about how you can provide an Open Access copy of your work. 

Acknowledge others

If you collaborated with others or your research was funded, then mention these partners in your tweet. You might like to mention @collaborator for their input or @researchpartner for their support.

For more tips on boosting your researcher profile contact your Liaison Librarian. 



The benefits of blogging about your research include:

  • quicker dissemination of research findings
  • quicker feedback and comments on your research from your audience
  • the ability to increase downloads to your papers and potentially, citations, by linking to an open-access version in, for example, an institutional repository like QUT ePrints
  • putting the spotlight on individual research projects rather than the journals they're published in
  • the ability to provide context around your research projects
  • explaining your research to a non-specialist audience or undergraduate students

Popular blogging platforms include:

Using social media to promote research

This video explains how you can use social media to promote research.  





Mendeley is a stable, freely available citation manager with an academic social network that helps you organise your research, collaborate with others and discover new research.

Researchers can build a Mendeley profile and chart views and downloads of their research, join groups, and view popular articles within their fields.

Mendeley data is also becoming more integrated with tools like ImpactStory (listed above) so has benefits acroos all disciplines from the hard sciences to the social sciences and humanitites.


LinkedIn is a social networking site for professionals, mainly used for professional networking. There are millions of users worldwide.

The Thesis Whisperer on Twitter