Three Twitter tips for comms pros

These three Twitter tips for comms pros may seem simple, but they make a big difference.

We comms professionals are often bonkers busy, so we can be tempted to just share a link to a story with the headline as the text of the tweet.

But this isn’t the best way to get people to engage with your tweet, or click read more.

In our Social Media Comms Academy, we learn how to create content that gets LOADS more likes, productive comments, retweets and clicks — and ultimately more real-life outcomes that help you meet your goals.

(We’re open for new members of the Social Media Comms Academy from August 16th to October 1st 2021 by the way – we’d love you to join us!).

Anyway, here are just three tips pulled out from our training that help you get better Twitter results.

You can’t do all of them at once, but you can try them out with various things you’re working on — to make your tweets more captivating for your audience.

Tip 1: Don’t share the headline

If you’re sharing a link, the headline will show in the Twitter card that the link generates. 

So don’t bother repeating it: people can already see it.

Use the space in your tweet to draw people in, and write something else to accompany the link.

And if you or a colleague are responsible for publishing the story on the web, make sure the web page’s featured image is there, and that it’s one that will intrigue or attract whoever is looking.

Tip 2: Write words that increase the chance of your audience being interested in the story.

You need to build interest, by giving people a reason to know it’s something they’d like to read/watch/hear.

So do a content spotlight, or add some humanity.

A) The content spotlight

Look at the story you’re sharing, and find the most interesting sentence, or a quote, or a fact.

Make that the text to go with the hyperlink.

It will give people a reason to want to read/watch/listen to the rest.

B) Add some humanity

Talk about the story as you would to a friend.

Why do you recommend someone read/watches/listens to the content? Can you share something interesting about the making of the content?

This example has a typo, but you get the gist:

Tip 3: Save people a click

Most people won’t be bothered clicking on a link that brings them to your website, YouTube, Vimeo or anywhere else really.

A) Embed your video in the tweet. 

Twitter links to external video hosting sites like YouTube and Vimeo don’t always display in a way that is optimum.

And for your audience seeing it, it can take around 3 to 4 seconds to open the video up in a new app.

Most won’t tap that link.

So when the video is embedded in your tweet, it’s quicker to view.

And Twitter will either autoplay it, or present it in a way that’s designed to make us want to click.

People are more likely to give it a second or two before they scroll past, especially if you have added captions.

This is your chance to pull people in.

Those few extra seconds, where people view to see if it interests them, is a bigger advantage that it sounds.

If the video you tweet is longer than the permitted 2 minutes 20 seconds, either edit it, or cut it it to the first few minutes.

Then, if your audience wants more after that, they can click the link you’ve added to the tweet.

 

B) Thread it out. 

If you have a written story, do it justice by tweaking it to be Twitter friendly.

Break the story down into bite-sized elements, and tweet it as a thread.

Then people don’t have to decide to leave Twitter to find out more, because there it is on their app, enticing them into your lovely world.

To be clear: clicks to your website are not the be all and end all.

Better some people find the story on Twitter, than no people find it on your website.

Bonus! Tip 4: Make your text look nice

A load of sentences squashed together does not attract the eye.

I’m not a stupid person, but a load of information in a big old chunk is harder for me to read and understand.

Make it easy to read for everyone.

Edit out anything you don’t need.

Break up the text.

Use return spaces between sentences.

The extra white space makes your text more enjoyable to read.

It’s social distancing for sentences: spread it out, and luxuriate in the room you can make in a tweet.

Which of these would you more readily notice in a busy feed of tweets?

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