Why does Twitter have 321 million active users? Because it is not your average social media platform. It is concise (280 characters only), easy (to use) and a sea of information. One follow, one retweet or one heart can help you explore previously untouched corners of the internet – a power that Instagram, YouTube and Facebook don’t have to the same degree.
How do you capture this power? By creating great content for Twitter.
The Beginner’s Guide to Concocting Content for Twitter
How is Twitter different from other social networks?
As digital natives who spend every waking hour on the micro-blogging app, explaining how it differs from other socials is an impossible task. So, we let better minds than ours prevail. As per them:
- LinkedIn is an office. A place where you meet professionals and expand your career.
- Facebook is a living room. The place where you relax and catch up with friends and family.
- Twitter is a bar. A place where you let loose, chat with strangers, drop weird one-liners and connect with people from all walks of life.
We think they are bang on.
Twitter is the one network where you’re as likely to get a reply from J.K. Rowling as a Retweet from your next-door neighbour.
With the distinction clear, let’s move on to the right way of using Twitter.
How to make the most out of a Tweet?
Over 500 million tweets are posted in a day. It means when you create content for Twitter, you have to make it count. Plus, with only 280 characters in hand, it has to be enticing enough that people stop scrolling, read, react and click on the link attached (if needed).
Here are some tricks to writing a tweet that gets your followers to RT, heart, bookmark or share:
1. Short works best
Yes, the character limit is not 140 anymore, but crisp is still the way to go. Keeping each tweet short gives more results and the trick to brevity is:
- Focusing on 1 message per tweet. If you want to talk about multiple topics, create a thread. (This works for one issue with many sub-topics too).
- Shortening the URL with Bit.ly or any other platform before adding it to the Tweet. It will give you more room to express yourself.
2. Hashtags are the golden key
Hashtags are the very bones of Twitter. They form the supporting structure of it. With the right tag, you create conversations with existing followers, and you can reach a wider audience.
- Always add one hashtag to your tweet. (Did you know hashtags fuel an RT 16% of times?)
- Keep it relevant.
- Use a trending hashtag to jump in on conversations.
The last tip works wonders in increasing your engagement, but only if you tweet something fitting to the trend and connected to your niche. A #basic tweet on a trending hashtag will always bomb.
3. Images and videos break the monotony
Again, and again, surveys have confirmed that Tweets with an image or video or even the ever-loved GIF have much higher engagement rates than simple texts. To be precise, photos show a 35% boost in retweets and videos 28%.
- So, when possible add images to the Tweet.
- You can attach four photos but do so only if necessary. One works just fine.
- Keep the videos short.
4. Stats are good for driving traffic
If you want to drive to your blog, website or article from Twitter, quotes, questions and statistics in a Tweet are the best way. Why? Because they whet the appetite of readers.
Don’t believe us? Scroll up. Reread tricks 2 and 3. Now tell us the numbers we quoted didn’t get you brain churning or take you to the link attached.
Oh, FYI, including a number in a Tweet will show 17% increase in RTs and a quote 19%.
How to get more following on Twitter?
You know the reason why we love Twitter? It is the best network for 1:1 communication. And it’s not just creators engaging with their followers in real-time. Brands talk to each other on Twitter too:
Source – Twitter
And genuine conversations are a great way to rack up followers. So:
- Favourite and retweet content* by other creators to show you are paying attention and build the foundation of a relationship.
*RT content only when it aligns with your values, ethics and persona. E.g., retweeting a fast-fashion brand when your niche is sustainability, is not a great choice.
- Then use @ to connect and mention them in your tweets.
- When the relationship needs fine-tuning or deeper dialogues, use direct messages.
- Always reply to tweets that mention you and respond to DMs.
- Ask open-ended questions. They encourage the Twitterverse to engage with your content by sharing views, thoughts and opinions.
- Add a poll to your Tweet. They tap into the innate quality of people to answer questions and makes them curious to see how others answered. Moreover, you can RT once the poll ends to share the results to get more engagement.
Source – Twitter
Twitter, a Different Class of Content
Unlike every other social site where you are more or less restricted to the people you already know or at the most friends of friends, Twitter opens your following to every user.
Could you imagine a Presidential candidate replying to a millennial singer on any other social network?
Source – Twitter
The answer is no. So, use this to your advantage when creating content for Twitter.