Ready to improve your Twitter marketing plan?
Even if you’ve been on Twitter a while, there’s plenty you can do to increase followers, retweets and replies.
In this article I’ll share six tips to help you get more return from your Twitter efforts.
#1: Turn a Pinned Tweet Into a Feature Box
The Feature Box is an email form you place at the top of your homepage, which offers your website visitors a freebie in exchange for signing up for your email list.
Simply create a Lead Generation Card that includes an incentive for people to opt in. Offer regular email updates, a special freebie or a subscribers-only discount. Pin the tweet to the top of your Twitter profile and you’re all set.
By default the lead generation card will save all your email leads in a .csv file which you can later download and use at your convenience. Plus, some email marketing tools like MailChimp add all new leads from the Twitter card directly to your email list, which is super handy.
#2: Communicate Less and Tweet More Links
It’s a common myth that one of the best ways to get new Twitter followers is to engage in conversations, but a recent study by Dan Zarrella looked at the “reply rates” of about 130,000 random Twitter users and discovered that highly followed accounts tend to converse less.
Keep in mind, the study results don’t suggest that Twitter conversations have a negative effect on your following, just that conversations aren’t what motivate people to follow you on Twitter.
Talking to people on Twitter will help you get your first couple hundred of followers. However, there’s no way to further scale this activity.
#3: Reconsider URL Shorteners
Back in the day, people used link shorteners to save extra characters in tweets.
If your primary motivation behind using URL shorteners is to simply save some extra characters – you no longer have to worry about that. Today, Twitter counts any link (no matter how long or short it is) as exactly 22 characters.
Twitter also applies its own link shortening service (t.co), which checks the URL for viruses and malware, to every tweeted link.
Still, many people continue to add shortened links to their tweets even though the benefit of using them today is arguable.
When people use third party tools to publish tweets, they stack more link shortening services on top of Twitter’s default one — resulting in multiple redirects and increased page load times.
Here’s a real example of what might happen “behind the scenes” as you click on a shortened link in your Twitter feed:
#4: Ask Twitter Influencers for Help
Content doesn’t spread automatically. You need to get retweeted not just by people you know, but by the right people.
According to BuzzSumo who recently studied the share counts of more than 100 million articles, when influencers share your content, the reach increases substantially. If one influencer shares a piece of content, it will get 38.8% more social shares. Three influencers double the social shares and five influencers quadruple them.
It’s important to network with influencers and develop relationships with them. Then, when you have an important piece of content you’d like to get seen, you can ask the influencers you know to share it.
#5: Use Twitter’s Recommend Feature
Recommend is a native feature of Twitter’s tweet button that many people don’t pay attention to.
After a visitor tweets an article from your blog, the window recommends they follow you on Twitter, if they don’t follow you already.
This is an excellent way to grow your Twitter account, since people who just tweeted your article are likely to want to follow you.
Look at the code of your tweet button and make sure the recommend field contains your Twitter username. To double-check you’ve set up the feature correctly, ask a friend to unfollow you on Twitter and then tweet an article from your blog. If the recommend field contains your Twitter username, you’re all set.
Note: If you use a plugin or service to create tweetable links in your articles, be aware they may use “recommend” to promote their own Twitter accounts on your blog. For example, if you use ClickToTweet, visitors who tweet from your blog are asked to follow @ClickToTweet on Twitter.
To avoid promoting third-party services on your blog with the Recommend feature, try an alternative like Click To Tweet by CoSchedule for WordPress.
#6: Repeat Article Tweets
Ever worry that if you tweet the same article more than once it’ll irritate your Twitter followers? Don’t.
According to a study by Wisemetrics, the second tweet of an article gets as much as 86% of the performance as the first tweet.
Clearly the performance will fade with each new tweet, but considering your followers are probably in different time zones, you still need to tweet your most valuable content more than once.
When you publish an article, send a tweet right after the article goes live. Then, send a second tweet a few hours later, one more the next day and another within a week.
After that first week, feel free to tweet your old articles whenever it’s convenient or appropriate. Your new followers will appreciate it, since the content will be new for them.
Just about everyone has an opinion on Twitter marketing. The key is to be careful who you listen to. Generic tips may backfire, so adopt tactics that are backed by real numbers and case studies.
In the end you’ll spend less time and money on Twitter, and will reap the rewards of a smarter marketing plan.
What do you think? What are your best Twitter tips? Have you seen other great articles with Twitter research? How does it affect your everyday Twitter routine? Please leave your comments below.