- Social Media

8 Things to Tweet About and Not What You Had for Lunch

In my last installment to my series on the Top Ten Business Practices for Twitter, I focused on when and how often to tweet. This post focuses on the best content posting practices. To that end, I put together a list of eight things to tweet about, and none of them are about what you’re eating for lunch:

1.  Links to Blogs and Articles About Your Industry

In the course of the day, we all see numerous articles and blogs that are relevant to our respective industries.  It is great to share these editorial finds, but it is even better to write them in a way that will get people to link on them, as John Borthwick, founder of Betaworks does below with this tweet:

 

2.  News About You and Your Company

It is great to share news about you or your company as it is relevant to your followers.  In the tweet below, @FordMustang does a nice job tweeting about a recent article discussing the power of the Ford Mustang versus Ford Trucks:

 

3.  News About Your Industry

It is great to comment about news in your industry.  Last week’s LinkedIn IPO unleashed lots of commentary from many digital leaders and commentators on Twitter, such as this tweet from Henry Blodget, CEO and Editor-in-Chief of Business Insider:

 

4.  Trending Topics

Trending topics on Twitter invite wide variations of commentary.   This past week, Christian broadcaster Harold Camping’s prediction that the world would end on May 21, 2011 generated a lot of Twitter commentary, including this funny tweet from British comedic actor Stephen Fry:

5.  Events

The use of hashtags for events make it easy for people to track the stream of insights coming from the attendees at an event.  So, when you are at events, it is a great practice to tweet out your insights using the event hashtag.  It is a terrific way to connect with other people at the conference as well as people who could not make it.  The recent Mashable Connect 2011 conference offered a rich stream of tweets including this one from public relations professional Jessica Randazza about a talk by Meetup Founder Scott Heiferman:

 

6.  Pictures and Videos

Twitter is a great place to provide links to photos and videos. Services like Twitpic and Twitvid make it easy and fast to upload videos and pictures for followers to see.  In addition, just tweeting out links to pictures on your website or Twitter is a great way to engage audiences, especially if you are enabling them to experience something from the perspective of an insider.  This tweet from Pitchfork Media does just that.

7.  Questions

Questions are a great way to secure retweets and responses from followers.  They can be used for a wide range of topics from trivia questions to opinion-soliciting to idea crowd-sourcing.  Rolling Stone makes a regular practice of soliciting responses through tweets and links to its website, such as this tweet on Pink Floyd:

 

8.  Retweets

Retweets, along with @mentions are the currency of the web and one’s influence in the Twitter ecosystem.  It is good to retweet great tweets when you see them.  However, to ensure that the tweets resonate well with your followers, it is a good practice to add commentary at the beginning or end of the tweet, as Netflix does effectively in retweeting Entertainment Weekly:

 

Not on the list are two common sense things that everyone should consider when sharing on Twitter:

  • Make sure it interesting
  • Make it about you, your brand or your industry.

Do you have other ideas about what to tweet about?  I would like to expand the list.  Just don’t make it about what you are having for lunch!

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