Frustrated with Twitter? Join the ever-growing club. You’re pumping out great content day in and day out, and it’s just not getting noticed. What’s the deal? Well, instead of keeping your head down and plowing forward, stop and look around you. What do you see? First:
- You’re too worried about clicks. Twitter is a place people go to ingest 140 characters of information quickly. Many users flat-out ignore links included in tweets. Why? Battery life, for one thing. Clicking a link in the Twitter app of a smartphone loads the landing page on your suddenly-operational web browser, further taxing that poor piece of mobile technology.
And don’t even get me started on attention spans. In the time it took me to write this sentence, I checked my fantasy baseball lineup for today, sent an email, and tried to get “Call Me Maybe” out of my head. That song is infuriating. The point is, 140 characters is more than enough to read for quite a few people in the Twitterverse.
So what to do? Focus on making those 140 characters the best they can be. Maybe a link is unnecessary from time to time. Be funny. Be honest. Be helpful. And to do that, you’ll have to realize something:
- You’re not having conversations. How often do you reply to people? Chances are it’s not enough. How about retweets? Again, probably not enough. This is an easy pattern to fall into. As the task list piles up, neglecting Twitter is a natural response. And when you do remember the account, it’s all too simple to rush a tweet just to get something out there. Next time you’re about to fall into that pattern, take 5 minutes to get a conversation going. Just 5 minutes. Listeners are hugely valuable on Twitter. There aren’t many out there.
Let’s use healthcare as an example. Is one of the people you’re following complaining about a headache this morning? Give him this article. Did you just laugh out loud at a tweet? RT that noise. Did you just read a fascinating sentence and share it with a friend? Again, RT. Show some love. The Golden Rule applies in the Twitterverse, too. Once you loosen up a bit, you may find your account is heading in a great direction. But in order to loosen up, we should probably tell you:
- You’re taking your account too seriously. Tweets scheduled months in advance. Great tweets ignored because they didn’t come from your brand. No conversation with the commoners.
If you’re not going to change these bad habits, you’re wasting your time with Twitter. It’s an organic, up-to-the-minute summation of our world, and there’s a place for anyone and any brand that’s willing to converse, help, and show a sense of humor. If you’re not up for that, your time and money are better spent elsewhere.