7 problems with your Twitter strategy and how to fix them

by Katerina Petropoulou, posted 1 year ago
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Many brands and individuals think that just having a Twitter account is enough. But sooner or later, they come across the challenge of a stalled Twitter growth and no ROI which in the worst cases would force them to give up.

If you’re facing the same challenges, then probably it means that your Twitter Marketing strategy needs improvement. Thankfully, there’s no problem without a remedy. So let’s take a look at some of the problems your Twitter strategy might have and how to fix them.

Problem #1: Not knowing why you’re on Twitter

So you have a Twitter account for your (personal) brand, but you’re not sure why. I know, peer pressure, the fact that ‘everyone else is on Twitter’, I get it. But the fact of the matter is that these are not good enough reasons to have a Twitter presence.

One way or another, maintaining a Twitter account requires time and resources on your part so you’d better make it worthwhile. Before starting to invest, take a step back and think what you want to get out of it; in other words, set goals for your Twitter Marketing.

Whether your goals include growing your audience, boosting sales, generating leads, creating buzz make sure they are SMART.

Specific – Be clear about what you want to achieve.
Measurable – Set goals that can be measured with specific criteria and metrics.
Attainable – Be realistic about your goals and make sure you have the necessary means and resources to achieve your goals.
Relevant – Keep in mind that your goals need to be worthwhile and bring you forward.
Time-bound – Set the timeframe and aim for a deadline.

Problem #2: Focusing too much on you

Twitter is a social platform and as such it requires a certain level of interaction. Many brands make the mistake of treating Twitter as a distribution tool and a platform for self-promotion. But there’s so much more to it.

Interacting with your audience is an important element of your Twitter Marketing strategy. The idea is to be conversational and interact with your community. Spending as much as a few minutes a day asking questions, replying to comments, engaging with your community and sharing their content can really make a difference.

Twitter chats are another way to engage in your niche, build authority for your brand and expand your reach. They provide you with the chance to be useful and relevant, offer your help and communicate your brand’s voice and identity in a constructive way.

Problem #3: Not focusing on amplifying your message

Twitter engagement is not just an empty metric. Many brands out there, find it hard to reach out to new audiences and there’s a point where you realize that you’ve been engaging with the same people over and over again.

Focusing on amplification is a great way to break out of your direct reach and expose your tweets to a larger audience in three steps:

1. Get serious about hashtags

It is no wonder that other social media have incorporated one of Twitter’s most defining features: The hashtag. Twitter hashtags are the best tool to target your tweets to specific audiences. In fact, tweets with one or more hashtags are 55% more likely to be retweeted than tweets without.

However, go for quality over quantity. Research has shown that the more the hashtags, the less the engagement of your tweets. This means that it is better to pick one or two of the most relevant hashtags to you and your content, rather than adding any hashtag you can possibly think of.

2. Optimize content for amplification

Content is king, especially on Twitter. This means that quality content that is valuable to your audience will significantly help you amplify your message and make your account more visible. However, there are certain elements in a tweet that can help boost engagement rates. The results of a recent Twitter study show that tweets containing rich media such as images or videos, facts or quotes are the winners of amplification.

3. Include calls to action 

That’s right! If you want your tweet to travel even further, just ask for it. Asking for a retweet is one of the most successful calls to action on Twitter. According to Twitter, promoted tweets that were asking for a retweet, increased retweets by an average of 317%. And if you’re looking for even better results, make sure you actually spell out ‘retweet’ rather than using the abbreviation ‘RT’.

Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 17.47.18

Source: Dan Zarrella

Problem #4: Not knowing what to tweet

Many SMBs and individuals out there face the challenge of content curation; basically finding interesting, valuable content to tweet.

A solid content strategy that defines the type of content you post, as well as the volume and frequency of your posts, can really make a difference in your Twitter Marketing.

Take Twitter Counter for example.  A few months back, after spotting a drop in our Twitter engagement, we decided to switch to a once-an-hour, round the clock posting strategy. The result was a significant boost of the overall engagement of our Twitter account.

Interactions overview

Here’s a break-down of time-saving tools for setting up your Twitter content plan.

1. Content Curation

Scoopit

Using keywords and interests Scoop.it can turn into a powerful, tailor made content curation tool with the option to directly publish content on social media in one click.

Feedly
Feedly is basically a news aggregator that can pull any RSS feed. You can completely personalize your experience and add all your favorite news sources and blogs into a stream so that every day you can immediately find great articles in your niche to share. Feedly also shows the number of shares for each piece which is a great way to quickly grasp the social media buzz around a topic.

Flipboard

Flipboard is a magazine-like mobile app for smart content curation on the fly that can save you a ton of time, as you can discover amazing content to share during your morning commute.

Mentia

Mentia is a free smart content curation tool for social media that suggests content based on its sharebility and your interests. What it also helpful is the fact that you can post and schedule content on Twitter, directly from the platform.

Bonus:

StartAFire

StartAFire is not a tool that will help you curate content but it’s definitely a tool that will help you add even more value to the content you share on social media. It’s currently in beta, but you can request an invitation. It integrates with Buffer scheduler and basically allows you to seamlessly promote your own content with great click through rates. So every time you share a link from a third source, StartAfire adds a little modal with content suggestions from you.

StartAFire

2. Content creation

Canva
Canva is a great tool for creating professional looking images for social media in less than 3 minutes. The best part is that you shouldn’t worry about the size of your images since Canva offers templates of visuals for all major platforms.

Piktochart

Piktochart is great for creating infographics in just a few minutes. What is helpful is the wide range of themes to choose from and the freedom the tool offers in customizing templates to fit your style and needs.

Wideo

Wideo is a handy tool for creating videos for social media, quickly and easily. The free version allows you to choose from a selection of templates and produce videos up to 45 seconds which is the ideal length for a social media post.

3. Posting and scheduling

Twibble

Twibble is a cool tool that will automatically post your blog posts on Twitter with amazing visuals to go with. All you need to do is set up the RSS feed and specify how often you want to tweet, hashtags and attributions. Twibble then will start scanning your source for blog posts and automatically post them to your Twitter feed using the posts featured image.

Buffer

Buffer is one of the most popular schedulers for social media and for a good reason. You can either let Buffer suggest you times to tweet or set up your own custom content schedule.

Friends+me

Although it started as a Google+ tool, Friends+me is a good alternative to Buffer that allows you to schedule content from anywhere on the internet.

Problem #5: Not tracking your progress

How do you know that your Twitter Marketing strategy is actually working? Posting and engaging on Twitter is one side of the coin but keeping track of your Twitter performance is equally important.

Depending on the goals you’ve set for your Twitter Marketing, you need to define a set of KPIs to facilitate your tracking.

Let’s take a look at a few general metrics that can help you assess whether you’re achieving brand awareness and more customers.

Follower growth

Keeping track of your follower growth on a day-to-day, weekly or monthly basis, provides you with information of your direct Twitter reach and how strong your brand is growing on Twitter.

It is one of the metrics to check on a daily basis to see whether you’re on the right track but for a helicopter view, you can easily calculate your monthly or yearly follower growth in percentages based on your stats report.

For example, if you were to calculate your follower growth in percentage for October it would be:

(Follower growth October – Follower Growth September) / Follower growth September

[Tweet “Follower growth is one of the basic KPIs of your Twitter success”]

Engagement

Measuring your Twitter engagement is can provide you with valuable insights on the quality of your audience and how many of your followers are actually engaging with your content. But most importantly it is an indication of how well your Twitter content strategy resonates with your audience.

To get an overview of your engagement, you can always start from the total number of retweets, mentions and favorites your account received in a day, week, month or year based on the period you are interested in and calculate the engagement rate of your audience.

A basic model for this would be:

(clicks + RT + mentions + favorites)/impressions

Another interesting engagement metric is the average number of retweets per tweet (total number of retweets / total number of tweets). This way, it is easier to decide on your Twitter content plan and the effect your frequency of tweeting has on your retweets.

Yet the possibilities are endless, depending on your goals. How many users interacted with you? How many of your tweets are retweeted and what is the average number of retweets per tweet? All these metrics can be easily calculated through your stats report and some very basic Excel magic.

What I find extremely time-saving in my monthly .csv reports from Twitter Counter is the section with the number of users that interacted the most with my account. This allows me to see at a glance my most dedicated followers and make sure that I engage with them on a frequent basis.

Screen Shot 2015-09-28 at 13.57.41

Website visits

Using a link shortener is the easiest and most effective way to track clicks and the traffic that your tweets generate. You can either create your custom link shortener or use free tools like bit.ly, goo.gl and Buffer which allows you to schedule your tweets and automatically shortens all links included. If you have a paying account with Buffer you can also set up Google Analytics tracking so that all your links are assigned utm tags for easier monitoring.

Leads

Twitter is a great tool for finding leads. An easy way to measure leads generation through Twitter is putting in place Lead Generation cards which stand out from regular tweets. They are a free tool with the option to promote them via Twitter Ads and they can be quite useful for driving interest to your website or product and turning your Twitter audience to contacts.

Problem #6: Not being responsive

Twitter is definitely not email which means that for brands in particular, it is very important to be quick and responsive when users reach out to you on the platform.

35% of people turn to social media seeking customer support and these people expect a fast response. More specifically, 42% of the consumers that have filed complaints on social media, expect a response within an hour.

Even if you’re not able to resolve an issue right away, a simple acknowledgement that you have received the message and you’re working on it, is already a good step.

Seamless is one of the brands that provide quick customer service on Twitter and a good example of fast, helpful responses.

What is perhaps even more important than quick response however, is perhaps addressing negative feedback on a platform as open as Twitter.

Negative comments can in fact be an opportunity to show your commitment to your customers and provide your audience with the best service you can.

Ignoring a negative comment on social media is perceived as indifference towards your audience and simply sends out the wrong message. Let alone that your lack of attention, can push things out of control very quickly.

Instead, you should opt for responsiveness in a constructive way. A great example of a brand that actively engages with customers that complain in social media is KLM.

Problem #7: Not being a good listener

You need to set up a sort of alert system if you wish, in order to gather all the information you need to refine and revisit your approach and social media strategies.

strong>Tweetdeck
TweetDeck is my absolute favorite tool for Twitter monitoring because it’s simple, easy to use and it’s ideal for quick Twitter monitoring quick Twitter monitoring.

Twitter lists
The fact that you can add any Twitter user to a list whether you follow them or not, gives you endless possibilities. Here’s just few of the reasons why Twitter lists are an essential tool for your Social Media strategy. Twitter lists can help you:

1. Listen

Having a good monitoring system in place is one of the most important elements of a good social media strategy and Twitter lists can make Twitter monitoring much easier.

For example, creating a private list of your competitors can help you get a better idea of their Twitter strategy and get some inspiration on what you could improve in your tweeting.

2. Build relationships

Twitter lists is what Monica Geller would refer to as ‘organized fun’. You can use them to build Twitter relationships with influencers in your field and reach out to new people in your niche. This way, you can build authority and a strong community around your brand in a more efficient way.

3. Curate content

Twitter lists are a great way to keep up with all that’s happening in real time and curate content you can share with your followers. For example, you can keep up to date with all the latest from social media influencers or influencers in your industry.

Twitter tracker
This Twitter Counter tool is great for Twitter monitoring and track important hashtags and keywords, which can come in handy during marketing campaigns you might be running. Along with the volume of tweets, you get access to list of the Twitter users that have tweeted about your search query the most, as well as a list of Twitter influencers that have tweeted about it.

What biggest challenge when it comes to Twitter Marketing? Leave a comment right below and let’s get this conversation going!

Comments

  • Brilliant! Thanks for adding the data to support your advice. I’m going to be referencing this article as I grow on Twitter.

  • Jeannette L Browning

    Best written article I have seen in a while. Couldn’t have written it better myself. Thanks for sharing!

  • SportsBarker

    Thanks for the fantastic tips and info. Definitely some valuable and actionable advice here.

  • good , now help get he
    r out of there.