How to increase your engagement rates on Twitter

A very interesting study from  Buddy Media was released earlier today that gives great insight into how brands can increase their engagement rates on Twitter. The study, available here, looked at the Twitter profiles of 320 of the world’s largest brands. By aggregating the number of replies and retweets, Buddy Media generated engagement rates for each of these brands from several factors, including the day of the week, time of day, and tweet length.

Based on the results, the highest engagement rates are seen on weekends, though brands are also tweeting less at these times. It’s likely that this is due to lower posting rates during these times. With less posts in their news feeds, users are likely more apt to see and engage with specific tweets.

The study also found that engagement rates on Twitter were actually higher during the day than at night. This is a complete opposite of the engagement rates seen by Facebook. It’s possible that this is due to Twitter’s more “RSS-oriented” nature. It seems to me that people use Twitter more during the day (at work, at school), and then get home and check Facebook. Let’s face it- surfing Facebook is more involved than Twitter, so user’s probably aren’t engaging with posts too much while they are busy.

Like writing less in your tweets? Buddy Media found that tweets with less than 100 characters actually received a 17% higher engagement rate than those with more characters. It’s likely that these tweets stand out in the news feed  and that consumers want posts to be straight to the point. As usual, it’s content over quality. It’s even possible that with more characters, brands are actually giving out too much of the tweet’s information that the user doesn’t even need to engage with the tweet.

In addition to less characters, brands should also be posting tweets that contain links. Besides getting more clicks and being a great way to generate traffic to a brand landing page, tweets with links were 84% more likely to be retweeted by Twitter users than those tweets without links. Even better, brands that asked users to engage with tweets actually improved engagement. From the study, tweets that specifically asked users to “retweet” or “RT” were twelve times more likely to be retweeted.

Finally, brands should make sure their tweets contain hashtags. Hashtags, those # signs you see on Twitter, receive twice as much engagement as tweets that do not include hashtags.

So, take a look at how you or your brand is tweeting. Are you getting the highest engagement you could be?

-Bryan Nagy