As Twitter continues to gain popularity with brands and people alike, how should you go about using it as a tool for communicating rather than a way of telling the world what you just had for lunch?

We sat down to watch the "Mayor" of Twitter, Chris Brogan, at Web 2.0 expo in New York to find out his top three tips for using Twitter to grow your social knowledge and reputation.

According to his bio, Chris Brogan advises businesses, organizations and individuals on how to use social media and social networks to build relationships and deliver value.

According to Brogan, Twitter search is a key tool here. "There is so much value not what your friends are saying, but what people are saying on Twitter, that you should use the search", affirms Brogan.  

Before you jump in expecting to use it to find a new pair of shoes on Zappos, use it not as you would use Google, but rather to see stories develop and move in real time. "You should be listening more than saying", says Brogan.

If you're like most, you use Twitter as a gloat machine, shouting about your achievements. This is bad says Brogan:

"Spend 12 times more talking about other people as you do talking about yourself. The more you talk about other people, the more you will gain respect, reputation, and trust", says the social media expert.

It's one of the biggest errors a Twitter newbie can make, just sucking up the noise.

"80% of my tweets are responses to other people", comments Brogan. "The result is that "I see you" and you are seen".

The concept here is that engaging in the conversation allows you to be a part of it, rather than just feeding information out into the masses without any purpose.

Photo by James Duncan Davidson