Are you ever amazed by the willingness of many a marketer to hang on to outdated and ridiculous concepts, even after they’ve been proven woefully inaccurate and even dangerous to the successful management of a brand or business?
I find myself amazed several times a day, sadly.
One of the most amazing, long-lived and ludicrous concepts is the idea that adding, “my tweets are my own,” to your bio somehow gives you a pass on sharing something potentially volatile.
Scott Slams The Silly Disclaimer
Although I’d seen those five little words on plenty a Twitter profile, I didn’t really think about them all that much until I started listening to the Unpodcast, hosted by Scott Stratten and Alison Kramer.
In one of their awesome Moron Mountain segments (bring back the mountain, pretty puh-leeze) they shared this reprehensible social media saga.
Ding, ding, ding! When you share socially, you’re sharing publicly. And guess what? Once you put something out to the public, you lose any chance of pussyfooting around about your intent and purpose.
Privacy is only possible when you keep an idea, concept, tweet, rant or other ridiculosity to yourself!
Once It’s Published, It’s No Longer Private!
Let me drive the point home … it ain’t your own if you choose to share it on a public platform!
Once that idea is published it takes on a life of its own. When you put it out for public consumption it then has the potential to be shared, discussed, dissed, misconstrued, maligned, talked about and even torn apart.
Much like there’s no such thing as a social media marketing ninja, there’s no way to publicly share a thought and at the same time keep it private and protected.
I often post a pithy phrase when I see something that bothers me. I never, however, expect that everyone in my feed will agree with my sentiment. I’m always prepared for discussion and dissension in the ranks.
If you can’t back up your idea, if you can’t handle dissenting opinions and direct discussion, maybe you should rethink that specific share.
You Can Rarely Lock It Down Once You’ve Let It Loose
Once it’s out there, there’s little chance that you can make it completely disappear. It’s been retweeted, screen capped and shared to Facebook, even discussed in a blog post or a popular podcast.
Undoing is MUCH harder than taking the time to think through what you plan to share. It’s MUCH easier and MUCH smarter to choose not to share something if you think it has the potential damage your personal or brand reputation.
A disclaimer isn’t going to deliver you from the potential backlash.
Ownership Comes With Obligations!
While your post has lost all potential for privacy once published, you still own it.
Your name or handle is attached to that original post, and is passed along with each retweet, each share and each screen grab.
Are you ready to own up to an idea that has the potential to create some serious dissent. If not, it’s time to consider shutting up rather than sharing!
I hate to see Twitter used improperly. As it’s my favorite social media platform, and the place I spend most of my networking and content curation time, it really grinds my gears to see the prolific promotion of out of date information and ideas.
Evergreen Erodes Over Time!
The idea that content can be timeless is great. But we’re too quick to tie a bow on what we consider evergreen, ever valuable content.
Here’s the deal. Evergreen trees are living things. Yes, they live long and fruitful lives. But they don’t live forever.
Same goes for your content! It isn’t immortal. Your content is going to eventually lose life and luster.
It ain’t evergreen forever!
I Thought This Article Was About Twitter?!?!
It is, it is. I promise. But it’s also about how you share content with Twitter.
The fast pace and short shelf life of a tweet often causes sloppy sharing, and that really bugs me. It seems to me that when you’re trying to make the most impact in the shortest time frame, you should take the time to share smartly. To me that’s just common sense.
When you’re attempting to showcase expertise and knowledge, it’s imperative that every link you share actually brings value when it’s clicked and read.
So, you might ask, how do I ensure that my shares are smart and savvy and seriously showcase my value to my audience?
READ Before You Share. EVERY TIME!
When it comes to ensuring you’re not sharing sadly out of date information, there’s one single, simple, golden rule. READ before you retweet!
No matter how trusted the author or site, you’ve still got to vet the content for viability and value before you spread it around.
Firehose? Face Feed Fallout!
My Twitter feed is a fast, frenzied, frenetic place. And I love it!
What I don’t love so much? Seeing your smug mug taking over a full screen of my feed that spans minutes, sometimes even seconds.
Spread that shizz out, tweeps!
When you scatter-shoot your shares this type of “hey, see how often I’m tweeting” fashion you make it hard for your audience to deduce which of the shares is worthy of the click. You create confusion and frustration. Do you generally choose to do business with someone who leaves you confused and frustrated?
I’d bet the answer is a big, fat NO!
Tweet For Twitter!
That might sound a little simple and you might want to call me Captain Obvious, but hear me out.
How often do you see a tweet that’s 140 full characters of hashtag frenzy, plus a shortened link.
#every #word #has #a #hashtag
What the heck is the article about? You can’t read the title in the link, as it’s been shortened to allow for more hashtag hurrah!
If you want your tweets to target your audience in a timely fashion, you need to ensure you take the time to craft that tweet.
I dare say that crafting a terrific tweet, a tweet that draws clicks and prompts retweets, is an art form. It takes skill, testing, trial and tribulation.
So, Can Tweets Really Be Timeless?
Yes and no. I know, the only worse answer is “it depends.”
One of the best things about Twitter is its speed. That speed means it’s often a-okay-hunky-dory to share an article or an idea more than once. In a smart fashion, of course.
But when you’re using Twitter as a means to promote the content you’ve created, which is one of the main reasons many of us interact on Twitter, you have to factor in the timelessness of your content before you can calculate the timelessness of your tweet.
Content care (content audits, rewrites, reposts, etc.) goes hand in hand with creating a great Twitter strategy.
If you want to fill your Twitter feed with timely and timeless content that creates trust and respect for your expertise, you’ve got to create a content strategy that keeps that content timely, valuable and viable.
So?!?! Was this article about Twitter or content marketing?
Both. They go hand in hand!
As a curator of content, I spend a lot of time seeking out great reads that are worthy of sharing with my readers and followers. It’s a big part of my daily social media strategy and interaction. Sharing great content sparks conversation. In the end, that connection and conversation is why we’re all spending time online, right?
Yet, as I peruse and post throughout the day, I find myself shaking my head when otherwise smart and savvy social media marketers fail to take seriously one top tenet when it comes to top-notch Twitter tactics.
Put A Feather In Your Social Media Cap!
And get the online recognition you deserve!
Make sure your Twitter handle shows up when I, or anyone for that matter, click on your social sharing button to tweet your captivating content.
Seems pretty simple, right?
Yet everyday I click to tweet great content and I get one of the following:
- Great intro and link, but no attribution
- Great intro and link, third party plug-in attribution
- No intro and a long, ugly link
Credit Yourself For Your Content!
I’m guessing you put a little, or a lot, of time and effort into crafting that content. Wouldn’t it be nice to reap some extra reward when that killer content is shared on Twitter?
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve clicked to tweet only to see the attribution for the share go to Shareaholic. Sure, they provide a great product and service to many a blogger, but the tool doesn’t deserve the recognition for your content creation efforts!
I also see a lot of people who’ve take the time to set up their click to tweet attributions, but without their interactive, clickable, handle. Your company name is nice and you can certainly monitor Twitter mentions of your company name. But wouldn’t you like to allow interested parties to easily access your Twitter profile and maybe add themselves to our growing list of fabulous followers?
K.I.S.S. – Keep It Simple, Savvy!
Your time in the social space slips away in seconds. You’ve got to take advantage of every opportunity to showcase yourself when it comes to creating connections and enabling engagement.
You’ve taken the time to add a social sharing plug-in, because you want your content both read AND shared. But failing to properly set up your social sharing, especially for Twitter, is quite silly.
Take a minute, right now – don’t delay – and check out your social sharing set-up. Is your Twitter handle, interactive and clickable, showing up when you click on the little bird? If not, take the time to sort it out. Missed opportunities are silly at best, and I won’t tell you what word I’d use to describe them at worst!
You’re a savvy, not silly marketer, aren’t you?
… but if it ain’t working, it’s A-OK hunky dory to jettison that *%$#^@!
I have a couple of clients for whom Facebook is still an absolute dream. Their reach and level of activity, or engagement, has seen no drop. They continue to steadily add new page likes and continue to see positive results in weekly Facebook reports.
That’s certainly not the norm of late, when most marketers are seeing numbers continue to dwindle, especially since the calendar rolled over into 2015. My own, already less than impressive, Facebook functionality has continued to decline.
Why are these clients continuing to see so much activity. I can’t give you hard facts, but I believe several factors are working in their favor:
- Their content is targeted to a niche audience that can’t get that information anyplace else.
- There’s little duplicate content being shared, because the niche is so specific and targeted – so every post is an AHA moment, as that content hasn’t already been seen elsewhere.
- Both of the pages I’m referencing could be considered hobby pages. Each has an incredibly avid and sometimes volatile following. Passionate followers keep pages moving along, especially when discussion topics are shared.
For those marketers managing pages of the same type, with the same continued result, I say hooray! And don’t do a ding-danged thing differently. The old adage that things that aren’t broken need no fixing very aptly applies.
But there’s another side to this story, one that many marketers and page owners are facing, and will continue to face as the year progresses. Dwindling numbers, rock-bottom reach and diminishing return on investment.
What are those in that boat supposed to do?
Hopefully you’ve never been one to put all of your eggs in one basket and you’ve been creating connections, engaging in conversation and building relationships on other platforms. Be it Twitter, Google+, Linkedin, what have you?
I’ve been seeing increased activity and killer conversation in the new year, especially on Twitter and Google+.
And if you haven’t spent much time elsewhere, it’s not too late. Get on board the Twitter train. Greet new connections on Google+. Finally devote that effort to Linkedin.
It’s never smart to rely on only one piece of rented digital real estate. You could be evicted at any time. And the landlords are in it for themselves, not for you!
Create A Fixed Formula
This is what I’ve chosen to do. I’ll be following a strict, formulaic posting schedule for the next several months. If Facebook continues to drop as a referral source, I’ll drop the frequency of my formulaic posts.
While I have any referral links from Facebook, I won’t drop it completely. But, I make no promises once those referrals dry up and blow away.
Don’t Let The @$$holes Get You Down!
There are several Facebook marketers out there telling you to quite whining, intimating that it’s your fault, that your posts are metrics marauders, that you’re an algorithm chaser. Here’s what I say to that:
I’m guessing you haven’t much changed your posting style and frequency all that much since you started on Facebook. I know I haven’t. I didn’t all of a sudden start posting multiple memes and monotonous, or moronic, motivational quotes.
Any changes made were those touted by Facebook themselves or the very same Facebook “experts” that are now calling many of us out as whiners.
It’s not whining to talk to your peers about what’s going on. It’s not whining to fess up and say you don’t have the budget to engage in daily post advertising or boosts.
It’s reality, and if those experts don’t like your reality, then they’re not really anyone you need worry about in future.
A Facebook Farewell May Be In Your Future
But it’s not going to knock you back and here’s why:
- You’re no dummy, you’ve invested time and dollars in the real estate you own, your website and mailing list!
- You’re no dummy, you’ve built relationships elsewhere! Facebook isn’t the only social media hot spot in town!
- You’re no dummy. You’re not listening to the guilt trips of the Facebook fan club. It works for them … YIPPEE. For you, not so much, and that’s not that big a deal. Certainly nothing that’s going to fell your business.
- You’re no dummy, you know exactly what works when it comes to your marketing dollar and you’re not about to throw it away. You’ll invest advertising dollars where you see the most benefit.
If you have to say goodbye to Facebook, it might be hard. You might feel a bit sad. But when one door closes, another opens. It might be time to see what’s behind door number two.
How About You?
What’s your plan of action when it comes to Facebook and 2015?
A while back I wrote an article about the kinds of responses I’d love to send to ridiculous automated direct messages sent on Twitter. It was, of course, written in my regular tongue-in-cheek, snarky fashion, but I hope it offered up a few truths.
Yet the dumb DMs keep on coming. Not that I really thought one article was going to put a stop to the practice.
Let’s Take Back Twitter!
Maybe if we band together and share some more ridiculous examples, we can slowly turn at least a few of these challenged souls away from making this their response to any new Twitter connection.
Some “stellar” examples from my feed and my responses:
Thanks for the follow. Due to spam/viruses on DMs, I prefer mentions. I don’t reply here. Cheers!
Yet sent to me via, you guessed it, DM!
Welcome & Thanks for Follow. Please Retweet my tweet at: http://twitter.com/reallyannoyingploytohelpmesellyourcrap
Thanks in Advance
Yeah, we just connected. Do you think we could actually say hello and get to know one another before you try to drag me into retweeting your crappy service to my followers. It’s not going to happen, EVER, but at least ease into it. Sheesh!
Welcome to our design world! Let me know if you’d like a website. Send me a message here, or email.
Perhaps you could have taken the 2.5 seconds necessary to verify that we, indeed, are web designers!
Thanks for following. I will surprise you with interesting tweets!
As if everyone else in my feed is an utter moron throwing the same old uninteresting and craptastic tweets my way!
Hi gotweetsgo, Thanks for Connecting, Hope you are doing great. I do website designs for €99. Need one get in touch
Not only couldn’t you take the time to suss out that I’m a web designer, but you also want to undercut my pricing so that you win all of the cheap bastard business! Have at it!
Thanks for following me! I greatly appreciate your support! Have a look at my books at http://www.amazon.com/-/e/BADJUJUSPAMSALE -via @justunfollow
Wow. We haven’t even exchanged names and I don’t know your sign, but you’re already hawking your latest book? Smooth!
Hi Go Creative Go!, Could we partner on gear reviews? https://twitter.com/LamePRCo/statuses/399466066570510336 … or 555-555-5555
Guessing this fellow thinks that because we provide social media services for a bicycle components company, we’re also ready to review all sorts of sports gear. Not so much.
Hi Go, We’ve succumb to G+, mind giving a follow and +1? https://plus.google.com/u/0/+LamePRcopr/posts … Tks!
I’m not impressed that you think I’ll be impressed that you’ve “succumbed” to Google+. Perhaps you should have asked me what I thought about the platform (I’m a fan) before you put the kaibash on me connecting with you there, or anywhere else. Unfollow! Oh, and spell out thanks for pity’s sake. We’re not 13.
Have any stellar examples of stunningly stupid DMs arrived in your Twitter inbox lately? We’d love for you to share with us. And, of course, include the snarky reply you wish you could send in response!
It’s funny, but last Monday’s article, Dear Leading SEO Service Provider, wasn’t my first “open letter” response via blog post. I’ve actually written a few of them over the years, and they tend to generate some interest and get a little discussion going within the comments.
I was, however, thrilled with the response to my latest open letter style and as I was speeding through my feeds recently I came across another terrifying tactic that I immediately decided needed to be dealt with in the same fashion.
Before I start, let me define one of the words in the title. A Twidiot is a Twitter idiot. Just in case there was any confusion.
Okay, the instigator of this open letter decrying terrible Twitter tactics showed up in my mentions late last week. As I monitor my mentions pretty carefully, because I want to thank those who share my articles and also want to actually talk to my connections, I saw this and clicked through to check out who exactly had mentioned me.
First red flag? No following on either side of the relationship. That means I’m not following him, he’s not following me. Just a small red flag, not waving a pennant. Maybe this marketing technologist wants to start a dialogue.
Second red flag? The tweet wasn’t a question, comment or compliment (generally the three ways most of us start a discussion on Twitter). It was a link.
Of course I clicked the link. If I hadn’t, this article would never have happened. The link led me to a landing page. If I signed up for it, I’d receive a link to view an email all about personalizing in order to better suit the needs of my clients and prospects.
That’s when my Simmer Down Sassy Pants antennae really started buzzing.
REALLY! You’re going to try to sell me on personalizing my marketing efforts when you’ve done nothing to make a personal connection with me?
Personalization in Marketing Requires You To Act Like A Person!
Once I saw the link, I decided to dig a little deeper. First, I checked to make sure this specific marketing enthusiast actually worked for the company in question. He does.
Then I took a close look at his stream, and was not too shocked to find that he:
- Sent out over 60 tweets per hour
- All tweets contained one handle and a link
- All of those links went to his company site
Wait! There’s more. Mr. Marketing Technologist sent out the same three tweets, with only the handle changed, over and Over and OVER again. No changes, except the Twitter handle. Along with the “personalization” video, this guy sent links to:
- an SEO eCommerce guide
- a video that detailed the many different ways a certain group of individuals described a red dress
Getting To My Marketing Point, Already!
So, this is obviously spam via Twitter. And really no different than email spam, Linkedin spam or Google+ community spam. Spam is spam is spam, it only differs in the delivery.
Maybe it’s just me, but shouldn’t a company trying to showcase itself as an authority on personalization actually personalize their marketing message? Maybe spend a little time on building real connections that might turn into leads, prospects and customers?
I monitored this Twitter account all weekend. The 60 posts per our wasn’t a tech glitch. The same posting pattern continued throughout the weekend with the same three rotating tweets. No changes. Over the weekend this equaled thousands of tweets, each mentioning a different Twitter handle.
Funnily enough, the follower numbers didn’t change at all. No new connections were made based on these scintillating tweets. SHOCKER!
Summing It Up, FINALLY!
While marketing and technology, especially in the form of smart and personalized marketing automation, do actually go together, I don’t think our marketing technologist friend got the right message. When you forget that marketing, especially via social channels, is about creating and maintaining relationships you might soon find yourself swimming in seas that foster spam.
Technology should assist in your marketing efforts, not override them in a bid to send out an endless stream of tweets that detracts from your brand’s real message and makes you look like a Twidiot!
What kinds of bad online marketing behavior have invaded your digital space recently? We’d love to talk to you about it!
Social media, when managed, maintained and used properly, can be magical. For businesses it offers up a chance to engage with current and potential clients, allowing you to broaden and deepen a relationship. However, when poorly utilized, there’s possibly nothing more annoying and potentially deal breaking. Sadly, Twitter – my favorite social media platform, tends to be a hot spot for some of the biggest offenders.
Terrible Twitter Tactics
We might call you a twit if you:
- Hijack our feed! We don’t need to see your name and avatar over and over AND OVER AGAIN, taking up our entire feed. Space it out a little, folks. Make it appear like your shares and ideas are part of a well planned choice, not a scattershoot.
- Don’t actually read, in its entirety, the article to which you post a link. Share out of date articles or misinformation and you’ll soon lose the trust and respect of your followers.
- Reply to every tweet on every feed you follow. Seriously, some tweets are just random thoughts or rhetorical questions that do not require your response. No one wants to see their feed taken over by your repeated “Yeah, man” reply posts.
- Never link out to pertinent information. You’re not omnipotent or omniscient. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Link out to pertinent articles, photos and videos. We’ll appreciate the share and consider you on top of what’s new and important in your industry or field.
- Use text speak and cutesy spellings. Yes, you’re limited to 140 characters. You can still utilize proper spelling and grammar.
- Get too personal. Yes, social media is about personalizing a brand and engaging with your audience. But it’s not a place to let loose with ranting political beliefs, too personal messages or moral dilemmas. TMI can drive friends away online, too.
- Automate without a sense of timing and importance. Posts should be timely and relevant. Breaking news posted three days later has no value.
- Hash tag EVERYTHING. Yes, hash tags help your tweet get found in search. But you don’t have to take up every available character with hash tags that might not mean much to the conversation.
- Hash tag inappropriately. It’s a lot like web sites that used to add keywords to their meta tags that had nothing to do with their site’s actual content. It’s cheating and it’s annoying. We feel duped. When we feel duped we cease to follow.
- Fail to change out your avatar. Want your business taken seriously? Post your logo, a head shot, something. Not that default egg. Many consider Twitter a serious business tool, me included. If you can’t take the time to completely fill out the shortest about section across all social channels correctly, how can we take you seriously.
Did I miss one of your top Twitter peeves? Of course there are others that I didn’t list. Feel free to share the tactics that get you riled in the comments below.
Happy Friday and here’s to a wonderful weekend free from Twitter twits!