Everyone is Tweeting/RTing but Nobody is Reading/Clicking Links

Shhhh Social media - Tweeting/RTing by Geralt CC0 Public Domain

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

RT Symbol      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

Who am I by Geralt CC0 Public Domain from Pixabay      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.
Respond, be involved.

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:
  • USA
  • UK
  • India
  • Aus­tralia
  • Cana­da
  • Ger­many
  • South Africa
Does that help you set the time at which posts should be pub­lished? It should.

All about Timing

Alarm clock Royalty Free image by Green Street      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:
  • Lon­don 2pm
  • New Del­hi 6:30pm
  • Syd­ney 11pm
  • Munich 3pm
  • 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.

Track Progress

      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

Re startingMost 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.

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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.

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