Facebook is the big dog on the social media block. Over 71% of US adults online have a Facebook account; only 17% of the same group has an active Twitter account*. But that number is growing – Twitter users include high-level industry influencers, including the media. There are lots of great reasons to use Twitter. And when you do, it’s important to understand that it works differently than Facebook and other social sites. It needs its own strategy.
We recently worked with an organization that has been active in social for a long time. They have thousands of Twitter (and Facebook) followers but very little engagement. We reviewed their current state and decided to put significant effort into maximizing their Twitter presence.
We started with our belief that gaining visibility and engagement on Twitter requires volume and repetition. The latest stats I’ve read cited the lifespan of a tweet as 18 seconds – then it moves down in the stream and something else gets your customers’ attention. You have to tweet repeatedly throughout the day to increase the odds of your audience seeing your tweet in their busy stream. The same report said that most businesses see an increase in engagement at about 14 tweets/day. Did you just gasp? You’re worried you’ll fatigue your audience?
Not so. Different people will see your tweets at different times, based on when they scan through their stream. Luckily, you don’t have to write 14 different ones. Write 3 or 4, perhaps, and rotate them throughout the day. Make sure your tweet timing spans your customers’ time zones.
For this particular client, we proposed a more focused content calendar and more frequent posting schedule. The strategy was implemented for a month and, within a week, we saw drastic increases in reach, retweets, replies and mentions. The organization, for reasons unrelated to the Twitter metrics, decided to default back to their previous Twitter behaviors. Within a week of discontinuing the content strategy and posting calendar, the results dropped by 50% and higher.
The cause and effect of our client’s increased Twitter volume, coupled with focused content, was obvious. These results aren’t unique to this business or its industry. Twitter success – reaching your customers and giving them reasons to engage with you – is rooted in smart content strategy, timing and frequency.
*Source: Pew Research Internet Center.