Is it possible to write a “perfect” tweet? According to this infographic from Neomobile it is, but I would argue perfection is in the eyes of the beholder.
The definition of the perfect tweet depends on your business objectives.
As the owner of a marketing and public relations company, I write tweets to drive traffic to my site. And not just ordinary, run-of-the-mill traffic.
Nope. I want traffic that converts into leads and customers. Those goals translate into two important Twitter metrics for me:
- Click-through rate
- Number of retweets
So how do you write a tweet that helps you reach your business objectives?
Attach a URL
According to research conducted by Dan Zarella, tweets with links are three times more likely to be retweeted than those without. If you are trying to drive website traffic, it is critical to link to blog posts, video, landing pages, pictures and other content. And do not just put the URL at the end of your tweet—sandwich it between compelling copy.
Master the art of “unselling”
In case you had not heard, social media is not just about you. Avoid overly promotional language in your tweets such as “buy me, buy me.”
It is fine to share your own content, but you need to share other content too. Subscribe to your favorite blogs, or add them to an RSS reader, so you always have a steady stream of content for your Twitter feed.
Perfect spelling and punctuation
Tweets are not the place to use texting jargon, so spell words in full (except for numbers) and avoid spelling or punctuation errors. Learn the common mistakes most people make such as using its when they really mean it’s, as well as the difference between their, there and they’re.
The magic number of characters
Sure, you have 140 characters per tweet. But you need to leave 20 characters for your link and another 20 for the retweeter’s comments. Some research indicates the perfect tweet character count at 100, others at between 120 and 130 characters. Regardless of where you net out, it is important you do not use all 140 characters in your tweets.
Limit the number of hash tags
Use hash tags so new followers find you, but do not overdo it. Tweets with more than three hash tags are hard to understand and tend to be ignored. Research hash tags ahead of time so you pick terms common in your industry.
Mix it up
Do not be boring. When writing tweets combine questions, interesting statistics and headlines to engage your followers.
Pick the right words
Include more verbs and fewer nouns that encourage followers to take some sort of action. Grab their attention with words like “change,” “new,” and “don’t” that piqué their curiosity.
Timing is important
Zarella’s research indicates it is best to tweet on the weekend and later in the day. Tweets posted on Friday, Saturday or Sunday have higher click-through rates than those posted during the rest of the week. He also found higher CTRs with tweets posted in the late afternoon versus the morning.
If you are just starting out on Twitter, these tips might seem overwhelming. Try to have fun with the platform and remember your followers as you write those tweets. Will they find your tweet interesting? Will they find it interesting enough to click? And will they want to share by retweeting?