In designing their social media strategies, some marketers invest in Facebook ads in the hopes of reaching that wide user base. Others focus on the fountain of youth that is Instagram. And B2Bs, of course, wisely leverage LinkedIn’s network of professionals for greater visibility. These are all good tactics, but if you want your business to have a truly comprehensive social-media-marketing plan, you’ll add Twitter to your strategy. Consider these statistics from Hootsuite:
- Over 300 million people use Twitter every month
- 80% of Twitter users are affluent millennials
- Daily Twitter users have been increasing steadily since 2016
- 75% of B2B businesses market on Twitter
Even more telling is that while Twitter is certainly popular in America (almost 25% of U.S. adults are on Twitter), it’s truly a global platform. This is evidenced by the fact that 80% of Twitter’s user base exist outside the United States. That means if you’re a business looking to take your operation global, then Twitter needs to be a part of your social media strategy.
The million-dollar question, then, is how best to leverage this platform for greater brand awareness and ROI. Like with any social media platform, there are best practices to follow in order to achieve this. With that in mind, here are the best Twitter optimization tips for 2019.
If you’re serious about developing an effective Twitter game and building your brand, then you can’t wing it. You’ll need to plan your strategy down to every last detail, including the subjects of your tweets as well as how often you intend to tweet. Experts recommend starting off at around 15 to 20 tweets per day. Data also shows that the most retweets occur within an hour after tweeting, which is why a higher output is best.
You’ll need to organize a schedule for your twitter activity, too. An invaluable tool to ensure you tweet consistently is a social media calendar. There are many templates, workflow solutions, and calendar tools out there that will help keep you achieve this and ensure you’re laying out an effective plan of Twitter attack and following through.
Find the sweetest tweet times
Say you’ve crafted an enticing tweet and are ready to post. Problem is, you can’t just throw it up on Twitter at any random time. If you want to maximize the chances your tweet reaches the widest possible audience then you’re going to need to post during the times when that audience is most frequently on Twitter.
Part of this comes down to predictable human behavior. Weekends are pointless, as this is when most folks are out with their families, with friends, traveling, or focusing on any number of things besides social media. That leaves us with weekdays, but even from Monday through Friday, there are hours when more folks are using Twitter than others.
Before 9 am, for example, your target audience isn’t even in the office. And after 5 pm they’re either heading home or daydreaming about the near future when they are headed home, so that’s out too. Lunchtime isn’t ideal either because people are enjoying some precious weekday free time, which thus leaves either mid-morning or mid-afternoon.
Hootsuite performed an analysis of nearly 60,000 tweets and determined that the best time to post is Monday through Friday between 9 am and 4 pm, with the highest amount of likes and retweets occurring at around 3 pm. This is when many professionals are trying to get past that mid-afternoon slump and are taking quick breaks and/or sneaking in some social media time.
Build your twitter following
There are a number of strategies to achieve this, and one of the most effective is to optimize your content. By “optimize” we simply mean giving your target audience the compelling, easily digestible content they crave. So keep your tweets short (you don’t need to use all 280 characters), share your best content, repurpose curated content, include multi-media in your tweets (videos, infographics, GIFs, etc.), and work on your hashtag game.
As to that last point, hashtags are a crucial part of reaching a wider audience and building a following, regardless if you’re in the B2B or B2C sector. Some best practices include:
- Create a list of popular hashtags to use based on industry terminology and audience interest
- Aim for evergreen hashtags (i.e., #InstaGood, #Sustainable, #GreenTechnology, #ThrowBackThursday, #PhotoOfTheDay, etc.)
- Base your hashtag around the benefit of your product or service to your customer (i.e, #BigSavings, #DataSecurity, #CloudSolution, #2for1 etc.)
- Use hashtag analytics tools to stay up to date on relevant and popular hashtags
- Keep refreshing your hashtags.
Also, engage with your Twitter follower and follow others in your particular industry. Follow the most visible Twitter users in your sector like influential bloggers, thought leaders, authors, speakers, business heads and anyone else who moves the needle on social media.
Focus on the right analytics
No modern digital marketer achieves success without a solid analytics game, and social media is no exception. Just like with SEO and content marketing, there are signals you must analyze in order to glean what’s working and what isn’t. Regarding Twitter, crucial signals include:
- Average tweet performance
- Tweet reach
- Twitter engagement
- Volume of social mentions
- Number of positive and negative mentions
- Following increases
- Social media reach
What these analytics are going to tell you (and they’ll tell you down to a science), is your level of relevancy. Little to no engagement means little to know relevancy, which means your Twitter initiatives are going to be all for naught.
On a final note, regardless of your particular industry, don’t be scared to show some personality and, dare we say it, humor. So with that in mind, we leave you with some examples of brands that keep their audience hooked with reliably funny tweets. Hopefully these examples will inspire you to have fun with Twitter while at the same time leveraging it for greater business success.
About the author
Vice President of Strategy and Marketing Services – Elevation Marketing
From legacy Fortune 100 institutions to inventive start-ups, Ryan brings extensive experience with a wide range of B2B clients. He skillfully architects and manages the delivery of integrated marketing programs, and believes strongly in strategy, not just tactics, that effectively aligns sales and marketing teams within organizations. Find him on LinkedIn.