Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Wanna be Retweeted? 3 Things to Remember.

What do we all want? To be recognized, of course…though many of us won’t admit that (yeah, me too). In the twitterscape, Retweets are a way to give recognition and show admiration, respect and appreciation for a deserving tweep.

But sometimes those wonderful tweeps can make it a challenge to retweet the tweet! Do YOU tend to forget that Twitter allows just 140 characters? It’s an art in itself. One needs to be crafty sometimes to make a meaningful chirp.

Just grabbed a tweet off the timeline. Here it is:
"Men are disturbed, not by the things that happen, but by their opinion of the things that happen." – Epictetus

111 characters with spaces. Whew. Not a problem. Even if the person tweeting has a 15 character account name, there may still be room for someone ELSE to tweet it after me. Now I grabbed the one just below it (note: changed to avoid promoting this event):

TONIGHT -- Rock XX.X presents SYSY Rocks: The Scandellions & Lennie Struthers w/ The Zucchini Boys and Mysterious Sons! 8P/9P – (11 character link)

And now we have a problem...it’s 136 characters! This tweep wants to get some important information out about an event. It could be critical to get this information out to boost attendance. Sadly, that’s Not going to happen. Here’s the best I can do:

RT @Zxtweeper TONIGHT Rock 99.1 presents SYSY Rocks: Scandellions & Lennie Struthers w/ The Zucchini Boys + Mysterious Sons 8P/9P (11 character link)

Oh no. I can’t retweet it with unless I slash more! It’s 146 characters. The original tweeters name was 9 characters long; if it was seven or less I would have made it. I’m sunk. No, actually, not me.

The poor tweep is sunk. His message will not go out to thousands of my followers.

It’s a simple message folks. If you have an important message that you really want to get out there, keep it as SHORT as possible. Use below 120 characters as a rule of thumb. Then you’ve got a shot at it. Otherwise, well intending folks like me may start taking out words and using funny abbreviations. The end result could be a retweeted message with some the original meaning missing. It’s easy for me to interpret what to remove from your original tweet, but would I have made the choices you would have made? Don’t leave it up to me.

Once you’ve got a short snappy tweet to put out there with LOTS of extra space, don’t be tempted to add “pls retweet” or “please RT”.  It won’t happen. Think about it…don’t you feel a little put off when you see that? YOU’RE telling ME what to do? It’s not polite to ask and it’s just plain not nice to try to whip people who likely don't know you into action. If there’s something  you feel begs to be retweeted, select a few tweeps that you converse with on a regular basis that have an interest in the subject matter and send them a direct message alerting them to the particular tweet. Let them know that if they feel it’s worthy of a retweet you’d appreciate them doing so.

Don’t be alarmed if they don’t retweet it; not everyone will. For the most part, this practice works well and it stays within those who have an interest in what you are saying. Tweeps ask me to RT via DM from time to time, and I do the same. Recently, I DID have someone turn down my polite request recently, however he explained why. Remember, you DO have to be selective when you choose the best candidates for retweeting.

#1 If you want to be retweeted, keep it short, sharp (KISS)
#2 Don’t ask to be retweeted in the tweet
#3 Contact tweeps who may have an interest in your tweet via DM in regards to retweeting

Common sense, not rocket science.

Photo courtesy of wallpaperslibrary.com ...we added the caption.

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