What is the ideal situation for a social media post that you make? On Facebook, it is hitting a high number of ‘Like’s or ‘Share’s. On Twitter, it is the number of retweets that you get for your post. More retweets mean your post is visible on Twitter timelines that is beyond your own circle. It does a world of good to get retweets on your posts. It opens up new territories and therefore, the potential to expand exposure of your brand name. However, it is easier said than done, as we all who have worked on Twitter know!
The most basic challenge to getting retweets is that your post has to be really good to be likeable enough for a person to share it in a personal capacity. These Twitter users are under no compulsion to retweet and they gain nothing out of doing so. Their only takeaway is that their retweet is liked or appreciated by people on their timelines. Your post has to fulfill this vital condition. To borrow a trendy lingo, your post has to be ‘cool’ enough! Now, the catch is that when internet marketers use tweets, they often make a marketing pitch out of it! It is the surest way not to get retweeted!
Here are some of the rules of getting retweets on Twitter that I have observed in the course of time through Twitter analytics.
Rule 1: Use more color. Tweets that are eye-catching and eye-pleasing are more likely to get retweeted. In fact, a simple stat shows that it has 150% more chance of being retweeted! Tweets with colorful, vibrant images have all it takes to hit a high click-through rate as well, of about 80%! This clearly shows that color grabs the attention and you get what you want, with little or less importance to your actual text copy. Images matter on social media, be it Facebook or Twitter.
Rule 2: Use more humor. Instead of boring business talk that makes sense to you and not others, how about using some humor in your tweets. No matter who your target audience is, it pays off to use some fun elements in the tweets. For example, why drag your numbers on Twitter when you know pretty well that it will cut no ice with your followers? Interpret those numbers with a funny tagline or image. Then watch the result! When the funny tweet is shared around, it is not just the humor that is passed over. It is also the hardcore marketing fact that you wanted to share anyway!
Rule 3: Use infographics. These are the new must-haves for retweets or social media shares. Infographics are images captioned with relevant text lines, charts or statistics. Infographics can summarize a point way quicker than an article or a blog post. And in the fast lanes of the internet, infographics get the message across without seeming to take a toll on the user’s time. Infographics also have the quality of simplifying and decoding material for the easy consumption of time and attention starved Twitter users. In other words, more retweets and more eyeballs for your tweets!
Rule 4: Be useful. Value addition is one of the most important criteria for getting retweets on Twitter. Your tweet must have some useful or valuable information that the users want to share with others in their circle. Contrary to what many believe, the internet is not simply about recycling meaningless content! For example, if your tweet contains the link to a free tutorial to learn Photoshop, the user might feel that there must be someone who needs to know about it. So they retweet. The value of your tweet has to be of general matters that appeals to a majority of people, rather than niche concerns. Even when you are tweeting about hardcore business matters, you can draw up general conclusions for users to feel the need to retweet.
The Final Word
A retweet is like a recommendation. When I recommend someone or something, I put my own name and credibility on the line. I feel prepared to take the credit. If the flak comes my way because of a silly recommendation, I feel let down and scalded never to do that again with that particular set of components. This is exactly what happens when someone thinks of retweeting. Your tweet must be doubly good for them to share it on their Twitter wall. When you have this thumb rule in mind, you are less likely to go wrong.
Have any other Twitter retweet rules to share? Write in!