Twitter may not be as huge as Facebook or as hip as Snapchat, but it’s the number one place to connect with the top influences and organizations. If you’re only tweeting links of your work or products, you’re doing it wrong. Twitter is the place for conversations, updates, fun facts, and pithy witticisms.
Before we take a dive into the depths of Twitter, we need to be clear about our goals.
What should you expect from Twitter?
- Get more people to follow your account. Bigger audience equals more opportunity to spread your word.
- Increase engagement: more likes, replies, and retweets.
- Increase influence. This is difficult to precisely measure, but let’s stick with increasing the amount of major influencers interacting with your account.
Each platform has its unique strengths. While there are a few core strategies you can apply to all platforms, there are specific strategies you can apply to Twitter. But first we must understand how Twitter works.
What makes Twitter different from other platforms?
Twitter is strictly a social platform. No one goes there to watch videos (at least nothing longer than 45 seconds) or to share serious artwork. Twitter is a conversation, between you and your followers. The flow of conversation keeps on going, regardless you’re participating in it or not. Twitter is the place to talk and talking is the one thing you need to do first and foremost in order to grow your audience.
Best Practices for Twitter
Now let’s get to the actionable things you need to do in order to grow your Twitter presence. These are the fundamentals that you can apply to a Twitter account of any business, organization, or individual.
1. Post Frequently
Just like Facebook, Twitter is a river of content and its algorithm favors frequent posting and more engagement. Tweet as often as you Facebook post.
2. @ People Whenever You Can
One of the biggest strengths of Twitter is how easy it is to build a rapport with major organizations and influencers. Whenever you’re writing copy for a tweet, see if you can @ anyone (the bigger the accounts the better). That’ll increase the chances of a retweet that can lead to engagement and a flood of new followers.
3. Reply to Tweets
Twitter at its core is all about conversations, and this applies to brands as well. Twitter is a platform to directly talk to your followers (or customers if you’re a business). In the beginning, consider replying to every single person who replies. This will pay in dividends, by instantly incentivizing people to interact with your tweets.
4. Images, GIFs, and Memes
Twitter thrives on images, gifs, and memes. Post them as much as possible and consider pairing them with open-ended questions to stir a conversation.
5. Connect Instagram to Twitter
By connecting Instagram to Twitter, you can ensure a steady stream of content that goes along with your twitter-specific content. A great tool that can share your Instagram photos natively on Twitter is IFTTT.
A simple poll pitting two or three things against each other is a great way to stir conversations between your followers. Be creative with the questions and choices!
7. Always bring value to our followers
Always, always, always bring something valuable to anyone reading your tweets. It can be fun facts, inside scoops, news of the day, witty one-liners, specials, thought-provoking questions, etc.
Now that you know the fundamentals of building your Twitter presence, here’s what I encourage you to consider moving forward:
- Experiment and test. Running small experiments with timing, copy, and hashtags is great way to see what works and what doesn’t.
- Talk with people outside of your usual purview. If you’re a realtor, try interacting with foodies. If you’re a video creator, try chatting with musicians. You never know where the conversation might lead.
- A strong community will automate the process of increasing engagement in the long-term. By interacting with each and every person who comments for the first few months will create a community that increases engagement on its own.
- Give, give, give and then ask. Start with smaller asks and then build your way. This is also known as the Benjamin Franklin effect. Just like building any relationship, start with a small ask like asking for opinions on a topic and then work your way up.
Now, go forth and grow your Twitter presence!
In upcoming posts I’ll be covering how to utilize Instagram and how to make videos optimized for social media. Stay tuned!
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