If you’re one of those marketers who’ve realised Twitter’s growth rate in recent years has slowed down, and are having second thoughts regarding marketing your business on the social network – you're not alone.
However, let me also assure you - Even though the growth rates of newer ‘image/video-based’ or more ‘visually stimulating’ networks like Instagram and Snapchat have surpassed that of Twitter, it barely undermines the opportunities that Twitter has to offer for the growth of your business…
Frankly, when it comes to Social Media, Twitter is a ‘different BEAST’ altogether. The fact that it has a widespread user base (79% of users are outside US); and is currently loved by 300 million monthly active users; 80% of whom access it via mobile – paints a completely different picture!
Twitter started off primarily as a ‘micro-blogging’ App designed to post very short comments or thoughts, which it still limits to 140 characters per post - making it highly compatible with mobile phones and for lifestyles ‘on the go’.
One thing that clearly differentiates Twitter from other social channels is the ‘speed’ at which the ‘broadcast’ ‘engagement’ or ‘conversation’ takes place. Its true essence lies in being able to constantly deliver the most ‘current’ or ‘fresh’ content – an uncluttered experience packaged within 140 characters of text.
Twitter is estimated to receive 500 million tweets in a day, out of which, majority of tweets are consumed and shared by 80% of active users; all of whom are Millennials spread out across the globe; and they control roughly $139 billion in spending power!
That’s more than enough reason for businesses to create a Twitter account, start engaging with targeted audience and build followers to meet their marketing needs. But to stand out in possibly the noisiest social media platform, it requires more than just a Twitter handle and a few tweets a day.
Here are 9 proven growth hacks that will help you to improve engagement, audience traffic and followers on Twitter:
1. Understand Your Audience – Use Analytics Tools
Any Twitter analytics tools will help you gain a deeper understanding of your audience, discover your most engaging tweets and lesser ones, and ascertain which of your tweets or campaigns people are gravitating to.
An example below is from Twitonomy, which is a complete Twitter analytics platform that allows you to track everything from growth, engagement, clicks, mentions, etc:.
This analysis will support you in creating a focused Twitter strategy that will help boost engagement and find most effective ways to grow followers. Some other analytics tools you can try your hand at are: Twitter analytics, Buzzsumo; Spruce, Hootsuite, etc.
2. Tweeting At The Right Time
If you're randomly sending out tweets, then there's a high chance of very little percentage of followers seeing them. In order to cut through the clutter of millions of tweets sent in a day, it begs to find the right time frame to push your tweets to increase its visibility to your followers.
Research findings from Sprout Social below shows the most effective time ranges when you can send your tweets, so that it is visible to your followers in their time lines:Insights from the Graph above:
- The most recommended days to Tweet are Monday Through Thursday.
- The most recommended day to Tweet is Thursday.
- The most recommended time range is around Noon on Thursday.
- The safest time to Tweet is any weekday from noon and 3 p.m.
- The least recommended time ranges include early mornings and late nights
3. Tweet With Captivating Images
There’s no denying that ‘a picture paints a thousand words’, and if a captivating one is accompanied with our tweets or bios – it sure captures the imagination of our visitors and naturally urges them to engage with the content.
A HubSpot research report on Twitter stats claims that the use of images result in 18% more click through, 89% more favorites and 150% more retweets.
Take a look at the humorous yet captivating ‘photoshopped’ self-image used by the TV host/comedian, Jimmy Kimmel for his twitter bio. It's impossible ‘not to’ laugh out and engage with his image depicted as an infant.
4. Don’t Forget To ‘Retweet’
If you don’t know it already, the new feature of Twitter allows users to retweet their tweets – a huge opportunity to recycle your favourite and popular tweets to bigger or more focused audience.
And even a bigger reward is given by Google by indexing the tweets that get retweeted many times, which means you raise your chances of turning up in search results.
A good practice would be to keep track of these retweeters with proper analytics and make a list of each follower that retweets you – as these could well be your potential loyal followers who like your content and amplify your message within their community networks.
5. Tweet Other’s Content – 80/20 Rule
The 80/20 rule is what the marketers practice as – Tweeting 80% of others’ content and 20% or your own.
The reason being, you cannot always consistently come up with fresh ‘tweet content’ of your own, and secondly it pays to give a shout out to your fellow twitters time and again, as it’s catches on to the golden rule of ‘reciprocity’, bringing a ‘win win’ situation to all involved.
When you find the content of other users that appeals you, give them a @mention and send it to your followers – this in turn can earn you a retweet from the user who created the tweet. See example below:
6. Humorous Tweets
Whether its creating humour tweets or sharing funny messages, if you can come up with messages that followers can have a laugh about, then it’s a clear winner – as it holds attention, stirs a positive emotion, and invokes your followers to engage with the message and share it with friends.
Brands like Old Spice and even NASA are making quite a positive impact on their customers by engaging their followers with humorous tweets – all the while retaining their brand values and identity. An example below is from NASA’s Curiosity Rover:
7. Use Images To Get Past 140-Character Limit
Here’s a trick you can use if you find yourself too constricted by the 140 character limit set by Twitter per post – If you really need to put out more text, you can always snap a screenshot of your smartphone notes, and use it as an image:
8. Reaching Out To Twitter Influencers
It goes without saying that if you can get influencers like celebrities and industry experts to convey ‘your story’ through their tweets, you're in for a treat – as they have massive following and even if a small percentage of their followers trickle to your account, it’s worth the effort.
As per According to Launchmetrics, “76% of marketers consider influencer engagement effective in garnering customer loyalty”. The report also emphasised that “93% of marketing professionals are getting results in improving visibility through influencer engagement strategies”.
It's essential that you develop an Influencer Marketing Strategy for Twitter, so you can reach out to Twitter influencers; build the required relationships in time by following and retweeting their tweets; to ultimately leveraging them to increase your own following.
9. Use Of #Hashtags
Hashtags are instrumental in creating higher visibility in Twitter. They can mimic the work of a Call To Action button and help amplify the engagement rate.
Tweets with hashtags are found to have two times more the engagement rate. However, you need to be careful not to overuse hashtags, as the report from Bufferapp estimates that tweets with one or two hashtags have 21% higher engagement than those with three or more hashtags:
A brilliant example of hashtag campaign is that of Coke, with its #ShareACoke campaign. The campaign drove in massive amount of sales and engaged thousands in creating their own content in social media:
Over To You…
It takes time to grow a loyal pool of followers in Twitter. A consistent effort of following through a carefully designed Twitter marketing strategy, along with experimenting with ‘growth hacks’ laid out in this post can help you grow your account, build your brand, and increase your audience reach and engagement.
If you'd like further assistance or would like to discuss anything covered today, we'd love to hear from you.
Call Andy Fox (me) on (03) 5249 5570 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Website is element7digital.com.au