Is everyone Tweeting/RTing, but not clicking the link? This has been a long time complaint about the value of social media sites by some blog writers. As writers we should always question the value of our publicity efforts and seek to understand ways to improve our readership.
Role of Tweeting/RTing
I have recently started using a tool to regularly post pages to Facebook and Twitter and have found that for every 10 posts that are made to Twitter:
4 are liked, and
3 are RTd.
The role of Tweeting/RTing is something a blogger must understand. This varies on a daily basis, but these are the averages that I have noted. The ratio for Facebook is a little lower. Now it is true that neither “Likes” nor RTs guarantee that your website is visited. Measuring activity linked to the automated posting times I have noticed however that there is a close correlation between the time of the social post and the timing of visitors on the site. An automatic posting, for example one made at 11am, is then followed shortly after by site visits. It is not possible to prove these were the direct result of the social post, but it is the most likely explanation.
I have spent time testing this and know that social media posts do bring visitors. From research I have previously shown that as much as 65% of traffic is from social media. But I also know that social media can at times be a fickle mistress. Much depends on who visits Twitter and Facebook on any given day. One of the aspects about social media that must be understood is that you, the poster, must show yourself to both be human and offer value.
Automate, BUT be Human
Automation is a great tool, it can make life simpler. How else can you send a tweet out at 2:12am (local time) then again at 5:45, 9:21, 11:20, 1:30pm, 4:42, 5:54, 7:20, 9:30, and 11:55 at night and still be human? But of course automation comes at a price. If that is all you post then people suspect that you are a piece of robotic code used to publicise things. Not a good impression to make.
The trick is therefore to be human in all other aspects. Thank people for their RTs, for example. Like and RT other people’s work. Tell people about things you like from other people’s sites. One writer I know told me his trick:
Post 1 link to your material, then
Post a quote by someone famous.
By doing this he is not making his tweets all about the link he is connecting with people. Most of us love quotes. It is on that level that he is connecting with people. As a blog writer you want people clicking your link, it is why you use social media. But it should NEVER look as if that is the only reason you are making social media posts. Automation will happen even when you are having a day off, that is one of the great advantages and you will accumulate likes, shares, and site visits, even when you are picnicking with your family in the park on a beautiful summer’s day.
Respond to Others
The Facebook share of the day at the beach does wonders to prove your humanity. I always kick myself after such visits because someone else posts picture I had not thought about taking. That said, I am not a person who loves self-portrait photos. I see someone else making such posts and remember I should have taken such a picture. I love to respond to what others are doing, make the occasional comment — this shows that you care, just as any person should. Be human.
You may have seen the picture of our street covered in piles of snow on Facebook. The driveway needs to be kept clear in order to go places and truth is people love to hear about your struggles. The same is true of before and after pictures for home renovations.
Responding to others and getting involved in their discussions is another way of showing they you are really human. It is all about interacting. Be a part of a conversation on one subject and people will listen to you on other subjects. One other aspect here is that responding to people you don’t know, in Facebook groups for example, means that you are always connecting to new people and pushing the boundaries of who you know.
Good Old Google
You will always draw a certain amount of traffic from Google searches (and if you don’t it either means you have a new blog or are not using keywords correctly). I have found that I gain 25 percent of my views this way. There are always things you can do to improve this traffic through the search engines, but that is another subject.
Knowing the source of your searchers can be useful in planning when posts are automated through the day. For example over the past few weeks the most frequent countries searchers are located in include:
Does that help you set the time at which posts should be published? It should.
All about Timing
Taking this list of countries it can tell me when my social media contacts may be active. At the time of writing it is 9am in my time zone (EDT). Yet time zones matter. Take the following cities and the times are different:
New Delhi 6:30pm
Cape Town 3pm
San Francisco 6am
Timing you social post can be vitally important. Given that people read blog posts for two reasons, for either their personal or professional development it says you should aim to get people’s attention while their mind is active and they are seeking knowledge.
How successful is your social media campaign? I form the question as an advertiser would quite deliberately. Think about your recent social posts they are a part of your campaign to gain readers.
Social media should for a blogger should be seen as a part of their advertising strategy, not simply a mud-puddle where you hope your words stick.
If you have 5,000 followers, the first thing you must understand is that at any specific moment only 1% of them are active. That 1% means that 50 people are active right now. Probably only 5 of them are looking at their Twitter feed, the others are currently posting their own material or reacting to their direct (non-social media) friends. Understand that at any given moment you are only reaching the small number of people that are actually reading their feed. I may look at what Steve or Marilyn have posted earlier, but many don’t.
Know, that if you have 5,000 followers you are unlikely to ever get 10 to 20 percent of those followers going to your site whenever you post. According to Wordstream “the average landing page conversion rate is 2.35%”. I am surprised it is as that. This figure is, however, based on the number of people actually seeing your post at any given time. By repeating posts you can increase the likelihood that your followers will take notice of your posts. Tracking progress is vital as it will help you understand where you can fine-tune your publicity efforts
Repeating Social Posts
Most people have followers from all over the planet and it is impossible to reach everyone with a single social media post. Your posting during the working day in most of the USA, for example, is when Australians are sleeping soundly. You should plan to repeat posts to allow people in other time zones to get involved in your activity.
With social media you must remember that people come and go. For example on a holiday weekend I rarely do anything on social media. I tend to catch up and start re-using them next working day. Many people are like this. They have days when they can use social sites and other days when they can’t. In addition people’s moods change over time. They may not look at your post when grumpy, but show it to them when they are happy and they will look. This is why you repeat social postings over time — catch people when they are paying attention. They can never hear you when they are asleep.
If you look at the posts which have been the most successful over all time they are likely to be the ones that you will remember people retweeting or drawing many comments on Facebook. It all proves the Tweeting/RTing activity is worthwhile in the long term.
Buy Peter B. Giblett a coffee as a thank you for talking about the power of Tweeting/RTing and the value it can bring to your blog. The featured image here is by Peter Giblett based on an idea by Dave Crisp. Other images used here come from royalty free or public domain image collections, such as Pixabay.