Twitter, the online texting service on steroids at only 140 characters is often a challenge for those with a traditional marketing mindset. It’s more about brutal brevity, smart succinctness and simple shortness than monstering the masses with multi-media sensory overload.
It’s all about doing more with less.
Creating and then marketing content with Twitter is more about tempting the click than revealing all your secrets at once. Twitter should be seen as the teaser social network. It offers the promise of much more beyond the link.
It’s unsophisticated ways are its charm and its fatal attraction for celebrities who dare to tweet while under the influence of substances, emotion or plain stupidity.
The Twitter torrent
Twitter is sometimes seen as an inbox when it is more like a fleeting torrent that streams and screams its content past you. Often never to be seen again. It pushes the “I don’t want to miss out” syndrome.
This led to the creation of Twitter tools like Hootsuite that organises Tweets into lists for reading later. The corralling of Tweets into hashtag categories can be an effective way to manage Twitter that is sometimes seen as similar to the ungainly management that is like herding cats.
3 key elements to a tweet
There are 3 core elements to a tweet. Get these right and you are on your way to using Twitter well. They may seem simple but they are often poorly executed or ignored.
So what do you need to hone, polish and include to make your tweets sing and dance?
- Headline – tempt the reader to click the link. That’s its job, nothing more nothing less.
- Links – It was 4 years ago that I watched a video that said “don’t waste a tweet without a link“. It sort of made sense.
- Hashtags – Drive those tweets into Twitter searches and lists that are relevant. It is becoming the glue for social. This is the role of a hashtag.
What are your goals?
Stumbling onto Twitter with poor intent can lead to wasted time and effort. You need to have some specific goals in mind.
Some goals that are worth considering.
- Do you want to drive more traffic to your blog, website or online store?..So tweet and automate the content but not the conversation.
- Is it sales you are after? Use tweets with links to landing pages that have something to sell. Or tweet a coupon that can be claimed in-store or via a Facebook page.
- Are you wanting to connect and engage with influencers, customers and prospects?…Tweet their content, offer to help.
There are more goals than this but bait the Twitter hook, get focused and strategic and maybe those tweets will lead to blogging nirvana.
10 tips for Twitter content success
So here are 10 top tips for creating, marketing and sharing content on Twitter.
#1. Write a great Twitter headline
Writing successful Twitter headlines are often the result of a well titled blog post or article. So the principles of headline writing are paramount. These include list headlines, (the bigger the number the better) “How To’s” and negative headlines such as “3 Deadly Linkedin Mistakes to Avoid” are some ideas to to get you started.
#2. Build a Twitter tribe
Quality of relationships is vital on social media as well as life but quantity is essential for successful marketers. Bigger is better. Building a large targeted list of Twitter followers will move your content and increase sales.
More resources: How to build a targeted Twitter tribe of 100,000
#3. Don’t forget the hashtag
Hashtags started in 2007 on Twitter and have since spread to Pinterest, Instagram, Google+ and more recently Facebook. It ensures that people can categorise content according to their interests and hobbies. Make it easy for people to find relevant content they want to consume.
More resources: How to Herd Cats on Twitter
#4. Tweet your content
Creating the best content you can is vital for social media success. One tweet is not enough. With every new article, post and YouTube video you need to share it several times on the first day it is published. Also if it is not just topical but evergreen content, keep sharing it. A tool I use to assist me with that is SocialOomph.com
Resource: SocialOomph (professional edition, which costs about $25 a month) allows you to not only load and schedule tweets but make them recurring. This feature saves me the onerous and time consuming task of ongoing scheduling. This works well for my content marketing as most of my content is evergreen and can be sent out more than once. So it allows me to load tweets once and then set and forget. It also lets you load up to 500 unique tweets.
The major benefit is that it saves me about 25-30 hours a week of ongoing tweet scheduling. That is 100-120 hours per month.
What is that worth to you?
#5. Tweet other people’s content
Social media is sometimes seen as a narcissists heaven as it provides global online attention. If you want to succeed then enlisting others to help starts with helping them first. I share over 20 other bloggers content on Twitter every day. Sometimes it is manual and other times I automate it. I use Twitterfeed to help me with this.
More resources: The Twitter Tool I Can’t do Without
#6. Target influencers with your tweets
Using Twitter to tap into the power of both mass media and social media influencers can be a powerful form of marketing leverage. The Old Spice campaign responded to the tweets of Ellen DeGeneres, Guy Kawasaki and Perez Hilton to great viral effect.
More resources: 11 Social Media Marketing Lessons from the Old Spice Campaign
#7. Use calls to action
Twitter has provided some research that shows that calls to action are effective. These include asking for a download, a follow and a reply. The old adage applies “If you don’t ask you can’t receive”
#8. Use Action words such as Adverbs and Verbs
According to Dan Zarella if you want a higher “Click Through Rate” (CTR) for your tweets then include action words like adverbs and verbs.
More resources: Action oriented Tweets Get More Shares
#9. Provide some personal content and have some fun
Social media is social, so mix up the serious and add something personal and fun to the mix. Apps like Runkeeper that track your exercise and post to Twitter (and Facebook) can be fun and add a little motivation to your exercise. Jamie Oliver the Celebrity Chef is well known for sharing fun and personal content on Twitter (and Instagram) that builds his brand.
#10. Ask for a retweet
This may seem like begging but according to Dan Zarella asking fora retweet by stating “please retweet” works.
More resources: The 20 Words and Phrases That Will Get You the Most ReTweets
What about you?
What content has worked for you on Twitter. Are you working on writing those compelling headlines. Is Twitter an important part of your social media marketing?
Look forward to hearing your stories and insights in the comments below.
Want to learn how to increase your Twitter followers?
My book – “Blogging the Smart Way – How to Create and Market a Killer Blog with Social Media” – will show you how.
It is now available to download. I show you how to create and build a blog that rocks and grow tribes, fans and followers on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook. It also includes dozens of tips to create contagious content that begs to be shared and tempts people to link to your website and blog.
I also reveal the tactics I used to grow my Twitter followers to over 185,000.