Think Twitter is ineffective? Think again. Although plagued by fatigue, Twitter continues to be the most popular micro-blogging site, an important customer service destination and one of the easiest ways to initiate meaningful, real-time discussions.
According to a HubSpot study, link-clicks account for 92% of all interactions users have with tweets. That is a lot of potential traffic that you can drive to your website and blog via Twitter. If that’s not enough, look at these stats.
- 42% Twitter users on the platform to find information about products and services
- 19% seek customer service via the platform
- 41% Twitter users share their opinions on the platform
Twitter is not only essential, but holds tremendous potential for branding, audience research, lead generation, marketing and sales outreach. But all of that begins with exceptional content and organic engagement. With the right social media management solution and Twitter marketing tactics, you can get more views, shares and achieve your goals on the platform.
15 Twitter marketing tactics to get more views, shares & audience engagement
1. Wordsmith tweets and stay under 100 characters
One of Twitter’s appeals is the character restriction that forces users to be concise. Even so, 140 characters has enough room for a long-winding sentence that can put viewers off. Imagine trying to read a long paragraph on a hoarding when driving past it on a road. That’s how it is to read long sentences on a platform where there are 7000+ new tweets every second. Twitter’s research proves that shorter tweets attract more engagement.
Think about it. Would you be struck by long, boring descriptions, or short, punchy quips that are easier to consume?
If you want to say more using less, here are a few alternative ideas:
- Use graphs
Extra brownie points if they’re interactive, like the one above.
- Use quote covers
- Use live video
— Louise Upchurch (@Loulou_Uberkirk) August 8, 2017
2. Choose the people you follow carefully
If you look at the top profiles in your niche on Twitter, you’ll see that most of their owners follow a large number of people.
This means that those people probably followed a large number of people in the process of building the following they have today. But you can’t follow everybody. That will leave you with a cluttered feed and an unfocused following. So, how do you decide whom to follow?
- Search Twitter by hashtags and keywords to find profiles to follow.
- Consider profiles suggested by Twitter. These are personalized suggestions based on who you follow, who they follow and how Twitter users interact with both these sets of profiles.
- Use tools like Tweepi to follow back your followers and “flush” those who aren’t following you back. Tweepi also tells you which profiles are less active and not likely to engage with you.
3. Tweet during the day & optimize tweet windows
The idea to catch your followers when they are active. This is particularly crucial on Twitter, where tweets stay on top of your followers’ feeds for only a few short minutes. You may have read posts that say tweet in the afternoons or late evenings, but to stay on the safer side, let’s consider the entire 12 hour period of daytime.
During that time, which intervals are best for your brand to maximize its engagement? These intervals will vary from brand to brand, but can have overlaps caused by general audience behavior. You can find your tweet windows using the tips.
- Create a test case tweet and publish it on different days at different times. Use social media analytics to identify which days and times worked for you best.
- Employ a Twitter analytics tool like Tweroid to do the job for you.
4. Tweet during off hours & on weekends
While a majority of your tweets can be published during high-engagement intervals, a few of them can be targeted at off hours or weekends. This strategy can help you reach the exceptions who are active during off hours and standout among the fewer brand tweets published on weekends.
Salesforce’s study notes that daytime tweets receive 30% more engagement even on weekends, when fewer brands choose to tweet.
- Create a sharing schedule that takes advantage of off hours and weekends.
- Schedule repeat tweets or copies of weekday tweets for the weekends.
5. Share powerful visuals where relevant
As illustrated in the first point, visuals can help you cut down text while expressing more. They’re also more striking, memorable and effective than text. You can increase RT rates by 150% using the right visuals.
It’s easy to get carried away with visuals and ignore text, but the key is to find the right text/visual ratio to use on your account. Try and experiment with different ratios before you settle on one. There is a lot that you can do with visuals.
- Experiment with multiple types of visual content you could include on posts.
- Test different graphic design and editing tools to enhance the quality of the visuals you create.
6. Add CTAs to tweet constructs
If you look at Dan Zarella’s list of most retweeted words, you will notice that most are CTAs in themselves. Words and phrases like how to, please retweet, follow and check out are suggestions made to the reader and take focus off of the sender.
Many marketers aren’t comfortable using CTAs on social media, but they are necessary in catching people’s attention and getting them to engage. You don’t have to include them on every tweet, but the occasional important one. Here are some great places to use CTAs.
- On visuals and at the end of videos. Many YouTubers have an end of video short clip where they encourage viewers to subscribe.
- At the end of presentations and infographics.
7. Follow back & engage with your community
Personalized engagement is a sign of appreciation and respect. Prospect and current customers are thrilled when you devote time to interact with them, and Twitter is a great place to engage customers by taking an interest in their lives and work. There’s no better way to build relationships.
Nike pushes followers to #JustDoIt. They inspire with their content and become cheerleaders to fans.
- Read the timelines of 5-10 fans everyday, find important milestones and craft short, personal tweets that offer encouragement.
- Follow back when customers follow you and send a quick tweet saying hi. Several people choose to automate this, and often include promotional links in the very first interact, which is a huge faux pas. It might earn you some traffic initially, but it doesn’t offer a great start to a relationship.
8. Create rituals to build relationships
Brands like StarBucks have no trouble getting engagement. The presence that they have built over time and consistent engagement with followers ensures that every tweet they send out is RTd and favorited 800-1k times. But that isn’t the case for a small business that has just begun its journey on Twitter.
Consistent engagement from your end is necessary to build an engaged Twitter community. One way to ensure consistency is build rituals to help keep it up. Here are a few ideas.
- Create Twitter lists.
Whom should you add to Twitter lists?
- Pioneers & inventors
- Most enthusiastic fans
- Peers (global & local)
- People you chat with
- Authors & journalists
- Yourself (why yourself? Because your tweets will be broadcast to people who subscribe to your lists)
- List icebreakers to use with new followers after you follow them back. Madalyn Sklar uses icebreakers to kick-off every session of her #TwitterSmarter chat.
When you curate content on DrumUp, you are suggested Twitter handles alongside posts, so the author is notified when you share them. This could be yet another way to engage with your community. Remember, people love to get mentioned!
9. Research hashtags before using them
Hashtags can do more harm than good if they are used incorrectly or abused. Simply using what you think is most relevant isn’t a great strategy, because you may have gone too wide or narrow, or chosen overused hashtags. That’s why it’s crucial to research hashtags to find just the right ones.
Some brands create their own hashtags to encourage conversations around them. This is a good idea if you have the resources or influence to make your hashtag popular, so you aren’t the only one using it.
- Use Twitter search to find hashtags and test their strength on Hashtagify.
- Use RiteTag to identify the best hashtags to use.
10. Link to problem-solving content on tweets
The smartest way to get the attention of prospects is by sharing content that can make their lives easier. This is also a great way to introduce your brand into their lifestyles and reduce the gap between you and your followers.
Whole Foods is a brand that advocates healthy living. The supermarket chain often tweets advice for healthy eating, wholesome and nutritious recipes, time-saver cooking tips and recommendations for cookbooks.
— Whole Foods Market (@WholeFoods) August 9, 2017
You can use audience research to identify what your followers’ concerns are, and share content to address them.
- Use Twitter’s audience insights to understand who the people following you are.
- Once you have, curate content that solves their problems.
11. Run fun contests & polls
People love free swag and the chance to win it is great motivation for your followers to interact with your brand. Additionally, contest and poll formats in themselves hold the potential to be entertaining and fun, if not informational. How you utilize them matters.
To create Twitter contests, you need to:
- Select a theme that resonates with your followers.
— The Muse (@dailymuse) October 4, 2016
The Muse is a site for job hunting and career advice. This poll is not only fun and relevant to their audience, but great insight for future content.
- Decide what people need to do to enter.
You’ll also need an exciting prize to giveaway to top participants.
12. Participate in Twitter chats
Twitter chats are massive conversations that can exponentially expand your reach. They are in a way better than Facebook or LinkedIn groups because they are public and don’t limit your exposure. They also attract high-quality leads and people who are truly invested in your industry.
You could participate in Twitter chats or create one for your brand. The best Twitter chats are:
- Focused on a niche
- Have clear objectives
- Discuss topics people want to talk about
13. Tweet the same posts more than just once
Why spend hours creating a blog post if it’s meant to be forgotten after the first round of social media sharing? When you share content on social media once, about 1% of your followers may see it. That’s a minuscule of the exposure you can actually get for your post, organically. All you have to do is create a sharing schedule and share more than once.
- Tweet the people you have mentioned on your post.
- Share once everyday, the first week of publishing.
- Utilize all your channels, social media and otherwise.
- Add the post to your email signature.
- Craft multiple versions of promotions using content within your post.
- Create an extended sharing schedule that runs for weeks or months.
Instead of manually scheduling these tweets each time around, you can store them in content libraries on DrumUp and set them to auto-post.
14. Forget your feed & focus on lists
When you follow everyone who follows you back, your feed becomes overwhelming. The only way you can interact with an overwhelming feed is at random, and that undermines the consistency that you need to build meaningful relationships.
Instead of trying to make sense of your feed, you can forget it and begin to rely on Twitter lists. The following are tips to managing relationships with multiple people using Twitter lists,
- Create as many Twitter lists as you need, but limit the number of people in each list to 15 or 20. This will ensure that your lists stay organized and manageable.
- Use the lists’ labels and descriptions to remind you of who the people in it are and how you should interact with them.
- If you want people in a list to be aware that you have added them, use public lists, else use private lists.
15. Practise asking the right questions
You can get really good at managing relationships via Twitter if you practise asking the right questions. Develop this skill, and you will see your engagement improve. Use icebreaker questions to spark that first connection with followers. Here are a few ideas that can help you get started.
- Instead of sharing your eBook with followers via an automated DM or tweet, consider asking them where they’re from or what they do.
- Reply to tweets in Twitter chats with questions, asking people to elaborate their answers and ideas. People who participate in chats are usually very passionate about what they do and will enjoy being asked to expand their answers.
- Use social media search tools (Twitter search, social media monitoring tools like Brand24) to find interesting conversations and participate in them.
If you have the manpower to manage it, you could build entire businesses via Twitter, one genuine lead at a time. But that’s not the only way to do it. With the right Twitter marketing tactics and tools, you can