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.
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.
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.
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.