hhh, Twitter. This social media giant nets 320 million active users monthly, with 1 billion unique visits per month to sites with embedded tweets.
If these numbers aren’t enough to make you feel slightly dizzy for a moment then you have probably already grabbed the bull by the horns and are reaping the benefits of a well thought-out Twitter strategy.
If you are not, however, or if you merely need ideas and some inspiration for fine-tuning your Tweets, this article is for you.
Let’s start from the top! We will assume you already have a Twitter account all set up, with a thoughtfully written bio and a good headshot (or perhaps your company logo) all set up on your profile page. You know the basics of Twitter, and you tweet occasionally — or even fairly often. You know what a hashtag is (maybe you’ve read all about them in our previous blog post?) and you also know the difference between tweeting at someone and mentioning them. You’re here for the finer details. You are here to improve your Twitter strategy.
Here are 4 tips that will help you gain brand recognition and grow your following on Twitter.
Stay true to your (brand) persona
If you are tweeting as yourself – yourself is all you need to be. However, when curating a Twitter account of your company, or a company you work for, things can get a bit more complicated.
Before you dive into tweeting and engaging your audience, try and make sure that you know exactly what kind of personality you want to give to your brand. Are you a serious company dealing with serious things? Is your target audience equally serious? Then tweet accordingly!
If your company is, however, a bit more relaxed and deals with relaxed and playful clients, tweeting too serious will eventually push them away and alienate them.
It is best to keep in mind who exactly you are trying to engage and tweet with them in mind. Feel free to use lingo that is well established within your niche and, of course, always be polite, helpful and kind.
The main focus of your Twitter strategy should always be on driving engagement. Forget about vanity metrics such as follower count and focus on connecting with your fans and followers.
Whether you are using Twitter to promote your personal brand or your company, and whether your company is doing business with consumers (B2C) or other companies (B2B) the basics of using Twitter are the same.
What works for your personal brand will work just as well for your company and vice versa.
Twitter’s data scientists have analyzed millions of tweets in order to gain insight into what kind of tweets see higher than average engagement. What they concluded wasn’t very surprising, if we may say so ourselves.
We love eye candy
We now know that tweets with a photo attached average a 35% boost in Retweets. The old saying that a picture is worth a thousand words has never been truer than on a platform which limits us to using only 140 characters per tweet.
But there’s more.
Everybody tweets, and in the sea of Tweets on your dash it is easy to get lost in information. Images capture our attention better than anything else, and so we naturally pay more attention to Tweets with images attached to them.
Next time you are tweeting, try and put some thought into an image that will accompany your tweet. Think of the message you are trying to convey with the photo you are attaching to your tweet, and if possible, post photos you have taken yourself. This will help bring an extra dose of personality into your tweets.
Logic dictates, and Twitter analysts confirm, that video content is high on the list of user engagement. tweets with videos receive a 28% boost in Retweets, which is significantly less than tweets with photos do but can be explained by remembering that most Twitter users use Twitter on their mobile phones (80%) and during office hours. People usually don’t watch videos during office hours.
Twitter is perhaps best known for its implementation of hashtags. If you Hashtag correctly, you will see your engagement bump significantly. Use hashtags relevant to your tweets, and when possible try and jump the ‘Trending Topic’ band wagon, but only if your content strategy permits it.
A tweet with a single hashtag will receive a 16% boost in engagement on average, and it is established by now that it is best to limit yourself to using between two and four hashtags per tweet. More than that will result in a significant drop in engagement, so save extensive hashtagging for Instagram. (Oh, but that’s another article, for another time… ;))
Mind the time
There is no wrong time to tweet. As a platform, Twitter is very fast paced and dynamic.
Still, tweeting at some hours of the day will guarantee your tweets earn more views. It is best to tweet later in the day, while people are commuting home from work – and after dinner.
For companies and brands that market toward consumers (B2C), weekend tweets get more engagement than the weekday ones – up to 17%.
There are many tools that can help you plan and set up your tweets in advance, so feel free to explore them and use the ones which best suit your needs.
According to various studies, B2B marketers get better engagement on weekdays but the numbers are at this point so close it is best that you test the behavior of your target audience yourself. You can do this by tweeting at various times of the day and week, and noting down how much engagement you get from your followers on each of your tweets.
Keep it short and sweet
Shorter tweets receive more attention and have a higher click through rate. The sweet spot for a short tweet is anywhere between 120 and 130 characters, with tweets under 100 characters getting 17% more engagement.
Keep in mind that “Content is King”
Bill Gates said it in 1996, and it couldn’t be truer today.
Tweeting your heart out isn’t enough. In fact, it could be the worst thing you can do if you are not paying attention to tweeting good content.
Your followers are following you to gain useful, real information. If you work hard on serving them with quality content they will reward you with their attention. You will notice you are receiving likes, Retweets, and new followers daily.
So double-check your information. Write about things that matter to your followers, and always strive to attach the best photos to your tweets. Your followers will appreciate it.
Engagement goes both ways, and so interacting with your followers should be at the hart of your Twitter strategy.
Don’t fall into the trap of only tweeting at people. Tweet to them. Put some time into getting to know your audience on a personal level. Learn what they care about and talk to them. Share their tweets, especially if they are creating good content themselves.
On Twitter, everyone likes to be noticed and heard. By being approachable and friendly with your audience you will easily broaden your reach and grow your following.
Twitter is a quick paced and versatile social platform that is perfect for boosting brand recognition. More importantly, it is a great way to connect with people who share your passions.
The key to “making it” on Twitter is approaching your audience with integrity and a positive attitude, and if you do so you can easily grow your following and reap the benefits of staying well-connected with your peers and followers.