If I asked you to rate the most annoying elements of Twitter, I bet your list would like something like this:
1. Spam/porno/marketing bots
2. Twitter weirdos and creepers
3. Dumb tweets
4. Excessive #FFs
5. RTs, RTs, and RTs
Am I right, or am I right? While I agree that elements 1-4 are the useless throw pillows of the Twitterverse, #5 is legitimate. RTs are intrinsic to the Twitter experience, so they are here to stay. That being said, we need to find a way to work with them, rather than against them!
Let’s play a game, RT Twact or Twiction?
1. People are more likely to click on a link in a RT. Fiction. You would think that people *would* want to click on a link that has been RTed because it appears to be legitimate, vetted even. However, according to Bit Rebels, people are more likely to click on the original link that was posted. Based on my research, no one seems to know why.
2. RTs are often used as an indication of your social media presence? Fact. The websites that determine your social media influence *do* use retweets (your retweeted content) as an indication of your social media presence. I know a lot of you don’t care what your Klout score (the forerunner) is, but it *has* become a commonplace means to evaluate you. If RTs help you get hired, I say “work” (yep, see what I did there?) for them!
3. I heard that there’s a program that can easily tell me how I compare to everyone else in the RT department. It can show me if people RT me more or less than the average person? Fact. That’s what Retweet Rank is for! According to them, my Retweet rank is 20,451 - approx 99.47 percentile. Not bad, not bad. *Pats herself on back*
Now for RT etiquette:
1. How should I RT? The classic way (writing “RT @Call_Me_Bookish” and then copying and pasting their tweet) or by just clicking RT?
There’s no right or wrong answer here, just preference. I personally go with the second option because it’s faster and I think that all of my Tweeps’ little pictures add diversity to my feed! It allows everyone else to instantly see who is partaking in the conversation.
2. Should I RT #FFs that I’m included in?
Again, this depends. I have more Tweeps than the average person, so this method no longer works for me; I would flood your feeds! If you have a smaller following, then go for it! However, the best way to thank someone for the #FF love is to include them in your #FF recommendations! If you’re already doing that, then there’s no need to RT or send them a thank you tweet. However, I do RT personalized #FF tweets. If someone takes the time to say why I should be followed, then I’m going to RT it. Does vanity have something to do with it? Maybe.
3. How much is “too much” or “too little”?
As I’ve said in a previous “Teach Me How to Twitter” post, you need to have a fairly even mix of original content, @mention convo tweets, and RTs. If someone’s entire page is full of RTs, then they look like you don’t have much to offer. If people barely ever RT their Tweeps, as @lisa_beebe says, “I secretly suspect they’re too self-centered to be worth following.”
Other times, you just need to play it by ear. You may publish a blog post that a ton of people @mention you about in a single day. If they are adding to the conversation or praising you, then those tweets are valuable enough to be RTed. Most of us suffer from RT addiction, so we’ll understand!
Final word: Go with your gut, but be conscious of how your actions impact your relationships with your Tweeps. Find that balance and RT away!