Following on from my recent blog post about Follow Fridays here is some information about Retweets on Twitter. I sometimes see people asking for a Retweet and it’s just not likely to happen I’m afraid. I’ve been asked about this a few times so I thought I’d explain in a bit more detail as it made me realise that it’s not always that simple or obvious. I covered a few things in my past blog posts but this is more in-depth.
Why don’t I get many of my Tweets Retweeted?
A Retweet or RT is when someone tweets something you have tweeted. It’s really useful in getting something you find important out to lots of people who aren’t necessarily following you. This could be a blog you’ve written or a blog you’ve liked, a special offer you want seen, a missing pet or important news. Anything. Take note that not many people will retweet constant advertising so don’t expect that. It’s ok to tweet the same thing throughout the day a few times asking for a retweet because people are online at different times. In my view 3 times in a day is enough but it’s up to you. Of course you must make sure it’s interesting enough for people to retweet or it won’t happen.
I sometimes think of a Retweet like a spiders web – your original tweet is in the middle and it just spreads outwards if retweeted. You’ll see it’s a very useful tool therefore.
Now, imagine you see a tweet and you want to retweet it but when you go to do that it is over 140 characters so unless it’s shorter you can’t retweet it. Most of the time you won’t bother trying to “edit” the tweet and shorten it because it’s a pain. So you don’t bother. Fair enough.
Therefore bear this in mind when you want something retweeted yourself. Keep your tweet shorter so no editing is needed. Test this for yourself but you have to add 5 characters to the number of characters in your Twitter name and take this away from the 140. For example:-
RT @_Sians: Showing a retweet example. Pls RT
(this is a retweet example, not the original tweet as it has RT in front)
Everything before the word Showing has to be added on to your original tweet when it’s retweeted, even the spaces. So in my case @_Sians is 7 characters so I need to allow 12 spaces for a retweet. Therefore for any tweets I want retweeted I don’t go over 128 characters – and that includes the request for a retweet -> pls RT. For example, if your twitter name is @ballymountaccs then you must allow 20 characters for a retweet.
Sometimes people will retweet something they like however you may get more Retweets if you ask for them. Hence adding Pls RT on to the end of your tweet.
If you are tweeting a link to a website like a blog post, lots of Twitter applications like Tweetdeck have an automatic shortener so the long link is shortened. It looks like a lot of gobble-de-gook – but it’s shorter than your original link so it’s handy to fit into your 140 characters. It still links through to what you wanted though. There are other applications to shorten your link and these are simple to use too. These can also track how many clicked on the link so you can see how well it’s working for you. Personally I like bit.ly and you don’t have to sign up to it just to use the shortener. Just type the link into the box and click on shorten. Don’t forget that you must include http:// at the beginning of the link. It’s sometimes best to just copy and paste the link so you get it all correct. And again when copying from bit.ly to twitter just copy and paste – worth checking it works too before you broadcast it to everyone.
You can shorten tweets with lots of abbreviations:-
You = u
Are = r
And = &
Password = p’word
Before = b4
Etc etc – see my previous blog about fun abbreviations. I don’t think these are difficult for you to work out for yourselves though. 🙂
Some people like to put a comment on the end of a retweet, for example if they want to say it’s worth reading or very funny. The way I do that is by using the arrows <– so it differentiates from the original tweet. It is good to show it’s you and not the original tweet though so things don’t get misconstrued.
There is the “new retweet” option available on lots of twitter applications however this is still taking time for people to get used to and not always recommended. It does mean you don’t have to edit the tweet and shorten it which is great though and hopefully it will be liked a lot more soon.
It’s always nice to say thank you to people who retweet you as well. Doesn’t take a minute but can be nice interaction with someone you may not even have “chatted” to before.
I hope the above is some help to those that are wondering and if there is anything you wish to ask please do and I’ll try my best to help. If you like the post please Retweet Me 🙂