In this series of mini-blogs I will offer tips on how to make the most from your tweets.
Steve Dudley | BOU
I’ve written before about how best to use Twitter and how Twitter is ideal for building communities and engaging with others. But it still surprises me how many regular Twitterati still don’t know how to get the best out of Twitter.
Remember to retweet – don’t just favourite!
If you like someone’s tweet then don’t just favourite it, retweet it! It’s what makes the Twitter world go round and ensures that things you like reach a wider audience. And remember, the more you retweet others, the more they are likely to retweet you.
By all means use favourite as a ‘like’ as well as a retweet, but use the favourite button to acknowledge personal mentions such as an #FF or a tweet from someone simply offering you a suggestion or advice which is personal to you and not for wider consumption.
Some people still don’t get hashtags. Some ignore them completely whilst others stick a # on pretty much every other word they tweet (which at best just looks very annoying).
But hashtags are great for grouping texts on the same subject. At @IBIS_journal we use #ornithology for all our own avian science tweets and many others are now joining us. This means that you can search on #ornithology within Twitter or your dashboard and get all the latest #ornithology tweets in one go! We also use them to group our conference tweets (check out #BOU2014) which also acts as a discussion tool during the event itself.
A hashtag can increase engagement by up to 55%
If you want to use a #hashtag for something then first check it isn’t being used by someone else – just put the #hashtag in to your Twitter search panel and if its not being used nothing will come up. Avoiding #hashtagclash is vital as you don’t know what other content might end up on someone else’s #hashtag.
Also, keep the #hashtag short. The recent joint ornithology conference in North America started out with #AOUCOSSCO2014 (14 characters) but soon got shortened to #AOCOSC14 (9 characters) – not forgetting that hashtags take up space in your precious character count.
More social media blog posts and articles from the BOU
How social are ornithologists? – our IBIS paper
How social are ornithologists? – our NAOC2016 conference poster
The role of social media in ornithology – presentations from our #EOU2015 Round Table