Retweeting is the most effective way of sharing information you like on Twitter. Apart from the obvious, most people ask what makes a retweet different from a tweet?
Recently I came across Dan Zarrella's data of retweets, where she helps us further understand why people retweet things, and this might help you.
1. Include Links
Retweets tend to contain links, Zarrella explains - 56.69% of retweets contain a link versus 18.96% of normal tweets.
2.Use URL Shortner
Avoid at using tinyurl.com at all cost to shorten your link. Rather use services like bit.ly and ow.ly to do it for you.
3.Incorporate Pictures & Other Media
Who can resist a tweet such as “Picture of my newborn”? Nobody, that's who. And your topic doesn't have to be anything as sweet as that. The key is the tweet leading to the picture.
4. Use Key Words & Phrases
As much as possible have these words contained in your tweets, as what Zarrella has found.
5. Avoid Idle Banter
To be honest, we all occasionally tweet about ‘boring' activities such as sleeping and showering but there are a few words that Zarrella dubs the “least retweetable.”
6. Avoid Semicolons
Most RTs contain some form of punctuation with colons, exclamation marks, commas and hyphens leading the way. But Zarrella calls the semicolons “the only unretweetable punctuation mark.”
7. Use Longer Words / More Syllables
Avoid abbreviations and emoticons but instead use better language with more syllables. Don't treat everyone on Twitter as stupid. As shown in the graph, Zarrella's RTs are not only of a higher syllable compared to normal tweets (1.32 vs. 1.58) but they are more intellectual: Per a Flesch-Kincaid test, comprehending RTs requires 6.47 years of education, while normal tweets require just 6.04.
8. Focus On Original Content Or Breaking News
This is common sense I guess but I'll just include it nonetheless. Original content is way more popular than the stuff we have already read, who wants to continuously read about Tiger Woods?
An experiment by Zarrella shows that certain timings have better RT chances compared to some other timing.
10. Leave Enough Room
To give yourself the best possible chance of retweet, you need to make sure you leave this many characters free.
This is the mathematics to calculate your unique number:
Your Number = Length of username + five characters
However, some users tend to retweet using (via @*****), hence the need to leave this much number:
Your Number = Length of username + eight characters
There you have the 10 tips to get retweeted which are used by me. If you have any other tips or methods, please do share it through the comment box. Just remember: “Always be linking.”
Link to original post - http://citysand.wordpress.com/2009/12/14/10-tips-to-get-retweeted-on-twitter/