How Much Should I Tweet
Posted by Charlie Recksieck
Or When Would I Unfollow You?
Q: How much should I tweet
A: It depends
The first thing we try to break our clients of is that concept that each tweet is special, like a snowflake. They aren't. It's not just ok to repeat tweet content, but it's encouraged.
Look at a few of the people who follow your Twitter account. How many people are they following? Unless the answer is under 10 (which it's not), then everybody who follows you is following a lot of accounts on Twitter. Any given moment that they're looking at Twitter, there is a barrage of tweets coming at that person. People generally do not see or read every tweet that's in their feed.
The flipside of this is that when you happen to make your relevant and outstanding tweet today, lots of the people who follow you will not see it. So, most of your core audience is missing your tweets as they happen.
That's why you should repeat Twitter content fairly regularly. If you announced a new article or blog post you wrote, then you should probably get the word out on Twitter about 3 times that week - but using slightly different phrasings or approaches each time will make it seem less repetitive to the people who do see all of the posts.
Also, rephrasing and reframing an announcement gives you a chance to experiment and see which approaches actually lead to more clicks.
The more important something is, the more often you should tweet it. If you just changed your hours of operation, make sure to get that word out there several times. If you're tweeting a photo of your soup at lunch, then I think you can make that a one-timer.
How Much Is Too Much
It depends who you are. All I can really tell you for sure is what turns me off as a reader. If I'm following a comedian I really like, I love seeing 8-10 jokes from them in a day. Or if there's some specific news source I'm following, then I don't mind seeing a lot of posts - in my case, the San Diego Padres twitter accounts, I'm completely ready to see a lot of tweets from them on a game day.
But if things really are less newsworthy, I really don't need to see more than 2-3 tweets a day from anybody. I've unfollowed or muted people who really are great in-real-life friends when I'm seeing just too many baby photos or notes on what they made for dinner.
Replies Vs. Retweets
Using hashtags, replying to other tweets and re-tweeting interesting articles are really where the engagement and community is on Twitter (for better and, usually, for worse).
When getting involved like this, keep in mind that many Twitter apps will not show every reply you make - and especially if we visit your Twitter account directly, most apps will default to show just your Tweets (not your tweets and replies). Long story short, your replies might be staying a little more politely invisible and crowding others' timelines less.
Conversely, a lot of retweets will really crowd a timeline. Additionally, the one-click Retweet without adding an additional comment or Retweet As Quote ... these come off as pretty lazy. And if you're using Retweet as a quick way to give a thumbs-up (or slightly more effective version of a Like), these things really pile up. Over-retweeting is probably the most guaranteed way to lose followers.
Great Moments In Live-Tweeting
Speaking of losing followers, live-tweeting is a way to do it. It's a little more standard or accepted during live group events like The Super Bowl or the Oscars. But it's another way of turning people off.
Then again, if you're comedian Norm Macdonald and you think it's funny to push your Twitter followers to the edge, then maybe you live tweet 150 play-by-play messages of a random PGA tour golf event - not even a major.
God bless Norm. Zero F's given in his comedy and Twitter.
Keep On Plugging Away
Good luck out there. Our basic advice is to figure out why you are Tweeting, whom do you want to reach or impress. Then think what that person wants to see. And take it from there.
That said, if you're not Norm Macdonald and you're tweeting upwards over seven times a day, most of us probably aren't following you.