How to Use Twitter Effectively

6 Important Tips to Using Twitter for Your Business

Did you know that 78% of user engagement with a brand on Twitter is in the form of Retweets?

Buddy Media also reports that Replies make up only 22% of engagement. Links are the largest form of interaction, with 92% of all user interaction with Tweets coming from link clicks. That being said, are you using your brand’s Twitter account effectively?

Good thing Buddy Media put together a report called “Strategies for Effective Tweeting: A Statistical Review” so we can examine some numerical data behind using Twitter. Let’s take a look.

Tweet On the Right Day
You may be using some kind of social media automation program to schedule your tweets for the week. This is a great way to make sure you are putting out new Tweets every day, without actually having to devote time to finding something to Tweet every morning. You should be spreading out your Tweets throughout the day, but when is the ideal time to Tweet?

According to the Buddy Media report, Tweets on Saturday and Sunday have 17% higher engagement rates. Even if you do automate your Tweets, you may have still overlooked the weekend since you’re not working, or at least you’re hopefully not at the office. Don’t fall into this trap. People generally have more free time on the weekends, so this is when they spend the most time on Twitter.

Tweet At the Right Time
Twitter is much different than Facebook. Your posts are only visible for a short amount of time after you Tweet them. The Facebook news feed shows posts based on relevance, not time. With Twitter, you don’t have the luxury of showing up on your followers’ Twitter feeds for days or even hours after you hit send. This means you need to be even more in tune to when you are Tweeting.

According to the report, Tweeting between 8am EST and 7pm EST will result in a 30% higher engagement rate than Tweeting late at night or early in the morning. Try out different times and see when in this window your brand is experiencing the most engagement.

Keep Your Tweets Short
Have you ever found a really interesting Tweet that you wanted to quote to your followers and add in your own two cents, only to find you only have five characters to add your own thoughts? Make sure your followers have room to interact with your Tweets if they want. Buddy Media found using less than 100 characters will lead to 17% higher engagement rates.

Include Links in Your Tweets
You can only say so much in 140 characters. Links let you lead to the full story, whether it’s to a news article you’re tweeting to your followers or to your blog post that expands upon your tweet. Buddy Media found a surprising 86% higher engagement rate for Tweets with links, as opposed to those without. If you’re not tweeting links as of now, you might want to consider starting.

Tip: Make sure you remember to include a space before and after your link. If you use a colon or hyphen to introduce your link, it’s easier to miss the space. Broken links are no fun, and you aren’t going to see the kind of engagement rates you want.

Include Hashtags in Your Tweets
Tweets with hashtags receive twice the engagement as those without, but only 24% of Tweets contain hashtags. Do your tweets fall in that 76% that are missing out?

Tip: Use the Discover tab on Twitter to find out how often a hashtag is being used. You can also determine the subject of other Tweets with that hashtag before you decide to start using it in relation to your brand. You may also find an opportunity to start a conversation theme with a hashtag that isn’t already being used.

There is such a thing as too much. Don’t hashtag overload your Tweets. Buddy Media found 21% higher engagement with one or two hashtags. Engagement actually drops by 17% when you use three or more hashtags.

Ask For the “Retweet”
If you’re finding your followers don’t Retweet your stuff, don’t be afraid to ask. Tweets that specifically asked followers to Retweet received engagement that was 12 times higher than those that did not. Writing out the whole word, as opposed to “RT”, leads to even better results.

Tip: Try adding something like “Retweet if you agree” to the end of your tweet. If you’re talking about a product, try adding “Retweet if you want this” to engage your followers and to get product feedback.

Tweak and Test to Find Your Ideal Strategy
Just because Tweets receive better engagement on the weekend doesn’t mean you should all of sudden discount the weekdays. Play around with the days and times you tweet and look at the analytics after you send. No matter how many reports you read, every brand is unique. You may find that 6am on Tuesday mornings is when you receive the most clicks. Save your best content, the stuff you really want your readers to know, and Tweet it at this time. If this is when your followers are on Twitter, consider Tweeting more during this time. Just be careful not to become so spam-like that your readers unfollow you. Buddy Media says more than four Tweets in a day and your engagement numbers start falling dramatically.

Key Points to Tweeting Effectively

  • Tweet on the weekends
  • Tweet between 8 in the morning and 7 at night
  • Keep your Tweets under 100 characters
  • Include links and make sure they work
  • Use hashtags, but keep the max to 2 per tweet
  • Directly ask your followers to Retweet

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