This article originally appeared on http://sixtysecondsocialmedia.com.
Mark Dalton specialises in social media and digital marketing news. You can find him on Twitter here.

Are you on Twitter? Do you want to be seen more? Replied to more? Looking for more general interaction or are you in business looking to improve your Twitter marketing?

Well believe it or not there are some things that you can do yourself on Twitter that may improve your interaction and marketing success rate. Here are my top 5 Twitter marketing tips.

 

1. Retweeting with caution

Okay, I have to start with that good old retweet button, retweeting is great, it is a way of sharing content from someone else with your followers at the click of a button. However it has some drawbacks, firstly, use that button in moderation. There is nothing wrong with retweeting a few things in a row, however I am sure you have come across those accounts where everything, and I mean everything is a retweet? Don’t be one of those accounts, too many retweets in a short space of time can be off putting for new followers and people may be abandoning your account sooner than you think.

The other problem with the retweet button is that when you retweet something the @user is notified that they have been retweeted however they cannot reply or favourite from within the notification panel. In order to continue the conversation users need to find the tweet within your profile and reply from there. That is time consuming and if you are trying to connect with people then chances are that the effort could be lost.

If you retweet a retweet from someone else, keep in mind that you simply become part of a number, a better way to retweet is to copy the original text and paste it into a new tweet with ‘RT’ (retweet) at the beginning, if you modify the tweet to accommodate character numbers then use ‘MT’ instead. You can achieve this process more easily in Tweetdeck where there is an edit button that allows you to share tweets this way.

2. Use your lists

Twitter lists are fantastic, I love them. They are a great way to filter your Twitter feed and group people together based on similar characteristics or interests. So one of my lists for example is, “Irish bloggers” where I have the @Irish_TechNews team placed. This allows me to view, interact with and check out what they are saying without the clutter of other tweets when I select to view the list.

Lists can be either public or private so you can monitor competitors with a private list or you can show of your impressive list of brand advocates and content creators in a public list. You can share your lists with people by tweeting them publicly. People will be notified when you add them to a list and as you grow as an authority in your field your community on Twitter will grow and begin to trust you to curate the information they seek.

3. The favourite button is a great interaction mechanism!

The favourite button is a nice interaction feature that allows you to inform someone that you like their tweet or their content without having to actually say anything to them. If you are a big brand or business this can be a great and quick way to acknowledge people who tweet you instead of trying to respond to each tweet.

Use caution when it comes to auto favouriting. This is where companies use bots to favourite tweets that are sent to them but it can have harmful consequences, some companies have bots which auto favourite tweets that simply mention them without reading the tweet first. This can land a company in hot water if it turns out to be a negative tweet or a tweet where favouriting makes no sense.

View the usage of the favourite button as a social media interaction, not something that should be done automatically.

4. Check those images and videos

Twitter carried out a study of over 2 million tweets and found out that tweets that include a photo can get a boost of 35% while video content can get a boost of 28% in terms of interaction.

Buffer found to have similar results when they carried out a similar study. Photos and videos are important for engagement but be careful how you add them to your tweets. Twitters image expander only works if you tweet via the official Twitter app or the desktop website itself. Image expansion is good as it draws eyes to your tweet when it appears in other people’s feeds.

Twitter also integrates with Vine and YouTube to embed video into the timeline when you post it. With so many options available, there is no excuse not to add video or photo content when you want to promote something. Drive that interaction where you have the control!

5. Reply to the right audience in the right way

Many people assume that every tweet they send and reply to appears in their followers streams. Not true. If you start a tweet with “@user” then it only appears in your feed and the feed of the person you are tweeting to. This can limit a tweet visibility if you want it to be seen by more people.

Now this can be a good thing if you want to keep it between yourself and another party, you can start replies and conversations with “@user” if you want to keep your followers feeds clutter free and that is a good thing!

However sometimes you want to give public praise or disgust to a company, in order to make sure people see it you need to start the tweet with a full stop, for example, “[email protected]” and this will make sure that your tweet appears in your followers feed.

There you have it, five of my top Twitter marketing and engagement tips to try and help you boost your Twitter social interaction. My last little tip to you, especially businesses, is to track your engagement. Recently Twitter made analytics available to everyone so that people can measure their engagement for themselves. Now there are no excuses, you can see a breakdown of everything and it is a free service.

You can help boost your own Twitter presence, so happy tweeting!