The key to succeeding on Twitter is influencing people. Your influence can be gaged in many ways. Inspiring retweets is one.
Sounds easy, right?
Actually, garnering retweets can be a daunting task, and those who accomplish this goal have one thing in common: they tweet with retweeting in mind.
Here’s 10 reasons you’re not being retweeted:
- You don’t follow the 140 character rule. Traditional retweeting (RT @username) has to follow the 140 – (username + 6) rule. Savvy users don’t use Twitter’s auto-retweet function, especially if they want to include their own comments.
- You don’t read what you’re sharing. Remember, you are the last line of defense for what you post. If you don’t click others’ links to ensure you’re not retweeting a scam or virus, why should people trust you enough to retweet you?
- The site you link to includes an auto-popup or overlay, begging me to take action. This appears before I’ve even read a single line of the page; in fact, it usually covers the page so I’ve no choice but to take some action. My action, of course, is to close the window and move on—without sharing your tweet with my followers.
- You cuss. I’m no prude, but I find no reason to cuss in a professional, social media environment. Even when quoting someone you should substitute characters (like ***).
- You are too political. Tweeting for sales, business, and influence should be void of an overly-political voice, unless your target audience warrants such discussion. In fact, I never retweet political statements on principle—I know that a portion of my followers would be offended no matter what the statement.
- The page to which you link is loaded with grammatical errors. I’m a professional, and my followers trust that I’m sharing information for a good reason. Broken English, spelling errors (sure, they happen, but there’s a limit to what’s acceptable on a per-post basis), and lack of punctuation doesn’t represent “me”. If you’re retweeting sub-par content, it reflects poorly on you.
- You abuse the term “Please RT!”. Unless the issue is urgent, you shouldn’t be begging. Accept the fact that people can decide on their own if your comment warrants a retweet.
- The content of your tweet doesn’t interest me. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. One cannot expect everyone they follow to only tweet topics of interest. Understand this and it will be easier to accept not being retweeted.
- The page to which you link requires registration. Even if it’s free, we simply don’t have the time to register at every site we visit. Find another source, or write your own post (avoiding plagiarism, of course).
- You don’t use the appropriate hashtag. Even though I’m following you, I might not be interested in everything you have to say, or, I might not be on Twitter when you tweet something interesting. The chances of me seeing your tweet increase if you’ve used a hashtag on which I search.
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking Twitter is just a “free-for-all” and “if you tweet it, they will come”. There’s a reason key tweeters are recognized and respected, and they didn’t build their reputations overnight. They did this, in part, by tweeting with retweeting in mind.
Have any “I won’t retweet…” stories of your own? Post a comment!