Twitter etiquette for businesses 101: tweet others as you would have others tweet you. In other words, respect the hash, don’t abuse followers’ feeds with unwanted personal reflections and be an active participant rather than a passive spectator. Below are five more tips for creating meaningful relationships and contributions to the social media aviary pumping out 500 million tweets a day.
1. Think before you retweet
How much value are you adding to the lives – or even lunch breaks – of your followers? If all you EVER do is retweet, you give wedding hopefuls no opportunity to get to know the real you and true identity behind your brand and company culture. Of course, retweeting relevant content is valuable for your followers, but remember to throw in your own opinion, useful resource, or link to your business blog every 4-6 posts to establish your own credibility and industry influence.
If you simply can’t resist a retweet, you can now add your own comment to a post when retweeting by quoting a retweet; a process by which the original tweet is embedded in your post, allowing you to add your own 116 additional characters.
Fans of this feature release Hubspot say, “We love the spirit of this change because it discourages blind retweeting and encourages users to add their own voice about why they’re sharing that Tweet”.
2. Consider ALL interpretations
Because hashtags are not case sensitive, long or multi-word hashtags are, often, written with capitals at the #StartOfEachWord to make it easier for readers to distinguish individual words. Sometimes though the capitalisation isn’t carried over when the hashtag is adopted by others and people run the risk of unintentionally announcing the death of Cher with the hashtag #nowthatchersdead (originally intended to mark the passing of former British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher). Ahhh, #Whoops! Then there was that one time Susan Boyle’s PR team fell face-first into the Twitter mud with #susanalbumparty… but that’s another hashtag altogether!
So, for the love of the wedding industry and fellow vendors, check hashtags before publishing – with and without capitals – and consider the ramifications of your seemingly innocent, creative new hashtag!
3. Hang out with the popular hashtags
Adding trending hashtags to your tweets will ensure your posts are visible in the most active streams and increase your chances of attracting new followers who are actively searching for those topics. With Twitter’s tailored trends feature wedding businesses can view hashtags of relevance to them, based on their profile location and who they follow.
To participate in a trend, simply use the exact hashtag as it appears in your Trends list and publish a post relative to the trend; relative being the key! Twitter filters search for quality, so if today’s top trending hashtag is #WeddingFail and you publish a tweet with this hashtag promoting your end of year wedding shoe sale in an attempt to capitalise on the activity, Twitter will likely punish you by filtering your post out of search results – see Twitter Rules.
The lesson here is don’t waste your time abusing trends when you could be using more relevant hashtags to draw attention to your wedding shoe sale from people actually interested in a #BadgleyMischkaSale and #WeddingShoes.
There are a multitude of paid and free platforms available for monitoring the best Twitter hashtags for your business, including Tagboard: a platform where users create ‘Tagboards’ to follow the current conversations and activity across multiple social platforms pertaining to particular hashtags, including how many posts per minute are published.
Of course, keeping an eye on your competitions’ Twitter accounts is one way to improve your business by watching your competition and can provide great insight into which hashtags are working for them and those that aren’t. Use this information to test on your own followers and wider Twitter world to optimise your hashtag strategy.
As a quickstart guide though, here are 10 fun wedding-related hashtags to watch that wedding enthusiasts are already chattering about across the Twittersphere.
4. Don’t get hashhappy
Tweets with hashtags might get two times more engagement than tweets without, but this does not mean that by doubling your hashtags, your engagement increases proportionately. In fact, stats gathered by Linchpin SEO revealed that adding more than two hashtags can cause an average decline in engagement of 17%, indicating the sweet spot to be a total of two hashtags.
5. Don’t automate the love…
In particular, this rule refers to automated follow-back tools that send people completely transparent, blanket direct messages (DMs) telling them how thrilled the profile or person is that you’re following them and they just can’t wait to read your tweets – which is a stretch, given they didn’t even have the time to write a personalised greeting.
Agora Pulse says, “It’s always nice to get a thank you but when they are lumped into an automated tweet with other users they lose their impact.” Personalised thank you messages or mentions are far more genuine attempts at reaching out to your followers and they let them know there really IS someone on the other end.
To show your new followers some love, mention them in a tweet by using their Twitter handle (the ‘@’ sign and letters that follow) and ask them a question about their favourite wedding movie of all time, or share with them an interesting fact, quote or meme to start a conversation and begin building rapport.
Has your business encountered success or challenges with retweeting, hashtagging or mentioning clients, celebrities or wedding bloggers on Twitter? Let us know in the comments with a link to your Twitter profile so we can give you a follow and keep up to date with your latest news and product info… We promise not to respond with a cheesy automatic follow back message!