Category Archives: Twitter
We all want our tweets to get noticed, read and retweeted—whether they are your personal tweets or you are tweeting on behalf of a brand.
The purpose of this blog post is to give you some information about what research says about the best time to tweet and show you some tools so you can tailor your tweeting times to your followers’ habits.
Time of Day
According to the Twitter vs. Time infographic produced by the marketing company Lemon.ly referencing Twitter and Sysomos data, the most traffic on Twitter occurs between 9 to 11 a.m. ET and 1 to 3 p.m. ET. According to Hubspot Social Media Scientist Dan Zarrella’s research, the best time to tweet is 5 p.m. ET. The takeaway: Spread your tweets out throughout the day with an emphasis toward later in the day.
Pulling data from Dan Zarrella, the Science of Social Timing infographic created by KISSMetrics, shows that the breakdown of tweets in U.S. 48% of tweets are from the East Coast, 33% of tweets are from the Central time zone and 14% are from the West Coast. It is important to remember that nearly 80% of the general U.S. population is located in the Central and Eastern time zones. The takeaway: Think East Coast time.
Day of the Week
According to Dan Zarrella’s How to Get More Clicks on Twitter, you are more likely to get clicks on your Twitter links toward the end of the week and weekends. From my personal experience, I have been successful with Sunday evenings. In terms of followers clicking on your Twitter links, followers are more likely to do so on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The takeaway: Don’t forget about the weekends.
Optimizing you or your brand’s daily tweeting habits is important in making sure you reach your followers. I found 13 tools that can help you figure out and maximize the timing of your tweets.
1. WhenToTweet. This tool will help you figure out when most of your followers are online.
2. TweetWhen. This free tool shows you the best times to tweet based on your past 1,000 tweets.
3. Tweriod. This free tool looks at you and your Twitter followers’ tweets to provide times on when you should tweet.
4. TweetStats. This free tool will show you detailed analysis of your best tweeting time.
5. Timely. This free tool analyzes your past 199 tweets and figures out the best time slots for you to tweet.
6. Tweue. This free tool is basically a Twitter queue that will evenly space up to 10 tweet from 15 minutes to eight hours apart.
7. TweetReports. This free tool gathers the stats from your top 25 influential followers and analyzes the times where keywords are talked about the most, and when you may want to participate in these conversations.
8. Lookacross. This paid tool (30-day free trial) to find the best time to reach people.
9. 14Blocks. A paid tool ($5-$49/month) that analyzes your followers’ activities to find out the best times to tweet each day of the week.
10. Socialflow. A paid tool ($1 for first month) publishes your content when it will resonate the most with your Twitter followers.
11. Hootsuite. A free web-based social media dashboard that allows you to queue up and post updates in a timely fashion.
12. Buffer. This free app allows you to add articles, photos and videos to it anytime of the day and then it automatically shares them throughout the day
13. TweetDeck. This free tool allows you to schedule tweets and can help you manage your social media platforms.
Conclusion: Success Lies in Frequency Not Timing
In the end, success on Twitter does not rely on when you tweet but how frequently you tweet. Not too much but not too little. If you post at least 5 times a day, spaced throughout the day, you will mostly likely achieve the maximum impact of your tweets.
A lot of what Stephen Covey writes in his bestselling book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People applies to the habits of the top influential Twitterers. So here are seven behaviors to repeat regularly to increase your influence on Twitter.
Habit #1: Make Each Tweet Count
Mark sure each tweet or update you send is relevant. There is an increasingly amount of noise on Twitter so you need to make sure each tweet you send grabs the attention of your followers. With limited time and lower attention spans, compelling tweets are a must. Hint: try to follow the 9 simple formulas to creating killer headlines.
Habit #2: Know Yourself
Habit #3: Plan Ahead
Habit #4: Know Your Following
Know your Twitter followers and what they like about your tweets. The third-party platforms mentioned above show you which tweets are the most popular and shows which topics your followers like and don’t like.
Habit #5: Listen
Listen well. Follow trending topics on Twitter, popular hashtags and take advantage that Twitter inherently reports news before traditional media does. Create a reasonably large amount of Twitter lists to better segment your followers so you can better understand your different types of followers.
Habit #6: Grow Your Influence Slowly
Your following won’t dramatically increase overnight. It is a marathon not a sprint. Follow these tips on how to grow your Twitter influence (another post I wrote).
Habit #7: Develop a Sustainable Strategy
Twitter takes a lot of time and effort to be successful. You are only as good as your latest tweet. You have to continually to produce re-tweetable content. Know how to get more retweets by taking advantage of research by social media scientist Dan Zarrella.
What habits would you add to this list?
Social media is a game changer for public relations. It is bringing new challenges and opportunities to the profession and to savvy pros. I have outlined seven ways that social media is changing PR.
- Two-way conversation. PR pros can no longer blast out information about their brand or client and expect to succeed. Consumers and journalists have come to expect that they won’t be “spammed” and will be answered quickly and in a personal manner. Timely, two-way communication is the “new normal.” Listening, engagement and thought leadership are now three areas that PR pros manage.
- Digital communication. PR pros need to know the latest digital tools, including social media monitoring tools, Twitter, Google Analytics. They need to understand blogging and the tools that come with that. We need to understand the nuance of communication for different online communities. (ie. between communicating on Twitter and/or Facebook.)
- Research. The social networks offer a wealth of information to PR pros on target markets, customer service, and media they want to pitch. They can now create new opportunities that may not have been available before without social media.
- Journalism is changing. Traditional media is no longer the “go to” source for information. The news can “break” from anywhere and the general public has become citizen journalists. For example, look at the U.S. Airways crash into the Hudson River or Michael Jackson’s death. The consumer no longer relies on big news organizations to be on the scene for news. Companies are, in essence, becoming media companies and their PR pros are becoming publishers. Be sure to read How is Social Media NOT Journalism?
- Faster and more visible communications. In our 24/7 customer-centric world, social media has increased the potential for complaints and the visibility of this negative outcry. Since we live in a social network, crises happen faster, and response time must be as well. It is important for PR pros to develop their organization or client online presence BEFORE a crisis happens. Because technology is always changing, the crisis plan needs to become a “living” document that helps give an immediate and well-informed response to the latest information.
- Analytics. PR pros need to understand and use math everyday. Social media can better help track the return on investment, including direct costs of staff time spent using the tools, and measurement of the traffic it drives to a company’s website.
- Organizational hierarchy change. Internal and external communications have been democratized thanks to social media taking out the extra layers such as a direct line to the CEO if you are an internal or external stakeholder.
What would you add to this list? How do you think social media has changed PR?
This post originally appeared on the blog Spin Sucks.
In today’s ultra-competitive PR world you need to find ways to stand out. Following are 10 things that continue to help me become a more successful PR pro. I hope they help you, too.
- Do your homework. A mass pitch never amasses a lot of coverage. Before you pitch a journalist or blogger, know what they cover. Research their past stories and fine tune your pitch to appeal to their audience.
- Learn something new. Take a training course. Sign up for a conference. Go back to school. Take an online certification like HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing Certification. You may find out you know more than you think.
- Become a better writer. Practice being a “headline communicator” by learning how to hook your audience with your first five words. Find creative ways to flex your writing muscle. Become a contributing author to an industry publication. Start your own blog or write for your company’s blog.
- Develop deeper relationships. Remember how powerful and memorable handwritten thank you notes are in today’s online world. Look for new and creative ways to keep yourself top of mind in the eyes of your stakeholders. Don’t forget that relationships are best built face-to-face than over the phone or on a computer.
- Learn how to better manage the yes. This is a twist on managing the no. Learn how to better manage the expectations of others. Make sure that you set the scope of work and discuss desirable outcomes. Make sure you always under-promise and over-deliver.
- Prioritize. When you feel overwhelmed by multiple large projects, step back and remember what’s most important to accomplish today. Create a to-do list at the end of every day, so when you come into work the next morning you know what you need to do first.
- Be more resourceful. If you can’t reach a journalist or blogger over the phone or by email, search for them on Twitter and send them a message. Find creative ways to pitch beyond the standard press release. Seek out the stories journalists are working on by using services like HARO and NewsBasis.
- Take advantage of social media. More journalists are using social media to find story ideas and sources. Use sites like Muck Rack, MediaOnTwitter, and Journalist Tweets to find out who’s online and how to contact them.
- Network, Network, Network. Join professional PR associations like PRSA or IABC or Ragan. Become a member of your local Social Media Club. Participate in Twitter chats. You never know when a relationship may help you with your current job or finding a future one.
- Use free PR tools. Read Jeremy Porter’s 13 PR resources you may have overlooked post. There are many tools out there that can help you deliver tremendous value to your brand or client – without spending a dime.
What tips would you add to this list?
This post originally appeared on the blog Spin Sucks.
Justin Brunner, a corporate communications manager at Standard Parking, and I met over Twitter. So it seemed fitting to find out more about him in 140 characters or less. Justin is responsible for the construction of their intranet, creation of their publications, development of their corporate messaging and managing their social media platforms.
In honor of Twitter’s #FollowFriday, here is a quick Q&A with him on everything digital media. I encourage you to follow him on Twitter (@justinspage) and subscribe to his blog, The Justinarim. Happy Friday!
Q: Tell me about yourself.
A: Recent Chicago transplant with a 7-year communications & marketing background; Texas native; Navy vet; lover of tennis, travel and fashion.
Q: Tell me about your experience as Standard Parking as the lead communicator.
A: My primary role is to oversee the delivery of information. My goals for year one: 1) assess 2) create strategy 3) implement and 4) measure.
Q: What has been your experience between understanding social media and implementing it?
A: Understanding what works best for your specific needs is hard. Constantly creating new content is tough. Implementation is the easy part.
Q: How do you define social media?
A: A direct, 2-way conversation across an online platform, primarily utilized for information sharing and creation of ideas.
Q: Who “owns” social media at Standard Parking?
A: Corporate communication oversees the company account & monitors overall company activity. Field marketing handles location-specific accounts.
Q: What is the purpose of social media?
A: It opens a direct dialog with your stakeholders (customers, clients, potential clients or competitors) and creates corporate transparency.
Q: How do you measure success in social media?
A: Success is the $40M question! I think it depends on the goals & objectives. Ask what can you get out of it then see if you’re measuring up.
Q: What is the biggest mistake that people make in social media?
A: I think there are two: Placing a dollar figure (ROI, etc) on engagement and whoever has the most friends/followers wins. It’s about quality.
Q: What social media tips would you give my readers?
A: Have a plan and be consistent. If you don’t know where you’re going then why go at all. And, if you go silent, no one will hear you.
Q: Who influences you the most on Twitter?
A: People that take the time to respond to your comments or provide a solution when you need it.
Q: What would you tell a “newbie” about the value of Twitter?
A: You only get out of it what you put in. Post relevant items that you feel are valuable to your audience. Try, try, try and you’ll get there.
Q: Your Twitter profile says you are an opinionated problem solver. What problem caused you to be the most opinionated?
A: When people told me to, “Stop asking ‘why’!”
Since I still had more ideas to add to my previous blog post 10 Ways to Grow Your Influence on Twitter, I have returned with 10 more ways to boost your Twitter influence.
1. Provide insight and ask questions. Commenton other blogs to promote your Twitter username and your blog Web site. Also, crowdsource. Ask others what they think about a topic, a new tool or technology or even advice on something that is on your mind.
2. Be an enthusiast. It is all about what you say and how you say it! Gary Vaynerchuk is a great example of someone you should follow on Twitter. Warning: His enthusiasm is contagious.
3. Be like Mike, as in Michael Jordan. Find people on Twitter that you admire. Whether it’s someone like Gary or Top Celebrities on Twitter. Look at their Twitter stream and see what, when and how they Tweet… and take notes.
4. Do your homework. Research other people’s Twitter streams. Find out what items they mark as a “favorite” or whom they interacted with. Also, subscribe to newsletters like SmartBriefor grow your RSS feed with blogs found on Alltop or Google Blog Search.
5. Create a contest. There are many ways you can structure a contest. But first, figure out what you want to accomplish with a contest. More followers or more Web site hits? Check out Mashable’s 5 Tips for Creating a Successful Social Media Contestfor more information.
6. Type slow, think fast. Remember the Five Ws (Who, What, Where, When and Why). “Why” is the most important question to ask yourself. Why would this tweet be important to be my followers? Remember, the more people “talking” about your tweets, the greater your influence.
7. Attend social media events. Attend events that discuss social media. Find those events in that area and live tweet on the event’s hashtag. For example, find your local Social Media Club in your area or attend a Ragan Communications social media event.
8. Find your niche. What topics do you usually tweet about? Is it leadership, marketing, PR, news of the day? Identify 5 to 10 topics you like to talk about most and stay within those lines. Your followers need to understand what you are passionate about and what topics to expect when they look at your tweets.
9. Help others. Are you a Meformer or Informer? 80 percent of Twitter Users talk about themselves. Be that 20 percent of Informers and help others. Pay it forward. It will come back to you.
10. Know your limit. Remember not to over-tweet. I know I look at the history of a Tweeter before I follow him or her because I don’t want to get spammed with irrelevant information on my Twitter stream.
What do you think? Do you have other tips?
Finally, if you’re wondering how to measure all this “influence” there’s a great site called Klout, which recently unveiled its Top 10 Lists for 2009. You can check out Brian Solis’ blog post with his thoughts on the lists.