You don’t have to look very hard to find terrible Twitter accounts. The signs of a bad account are easy to spot: hashtags on every other word, robotic tweets devoid of any emotion and tone-deaf promotional copy. Unfortunately, on a platform that offers so much potential for engagement, few companies have truly learned how to refine their strategy and use Twitter effectively. Don’t fall into this trap. Your firm is better than that! Sit down, pull up your Twitter account and double check that you’re not making any of these common Twitter mistakes:
Twitter isn’t all about you. The point of social media is to build community and allow for two-way conversation. If you’re using Twitter just as a megaphone for your ideas, no one is going to want to follow you. Interact with your followers, and avoid tweeting only promotional content. Throw in interesting content from other sources that relate to or support your message.
More so than any other social media platform, Twitter feels cluttered. It’s a constant stream of thoughts and conversation, and if you’re not engaged in it regularly, your voice is going to get lost. The only way to grow and engage your followers is to tweet consistently. Try to tweet at least three times a day, even if it’s just the same idea reworded.
Twitter only gives you 140 characters to work with, so you might think that it’s impossible to make a mistake here. Wrong! It turns out that there is, in fact, a tweet length sweet spot (say that five times fast). Too short, you risk writing a message that’s not engaging enough. Too long and it’s difficult to retweet, so followers will either alter your message or skip retweeting altogether. Aim for around 100 characters. I know, I know…100 characters?! You are used to writing 1,000 words, but we don’t live in that world anymore.
Whether it’s a date, a friend or a coworker, no one likes a desperate person. In the same way, no one likes a desperate Twitter account. Tweeting at people asking directly for a follow, constantly retweeting someone, or tweeting the exact same message over and over again are all bad ideas. It makes you look like a spam account, rather than the great firm that you are. Don’t do it!
Ah, hashtags. This seems to be the issue that stumps people the most. It’s tempting to pack as many hashtags as possible into every tweet, or to piggyback on any popular hashtag regardless if it’s related your brand. The bottom line: pick a maximum of three relevant hashtags per tweet. If you’re not convinced that this is a better strategy, read number four on this list again.
Twitter has come a long way from its beginnings as an SMS-based network. Pictures and video are the norm on the platform now, and it’s no wonder why: tweets with images see two times the engagement. It really is true that a picture is worth a thousand words—or at least 140 characters.