Twitter recently released a paper detailing the very high frequency of changes in their top search queries and terms (churn). Typically, these trending topics follow high profile news events or current popular conversation. Surprisingly, Twitter found that almost 20 percent of the top search queries in a given hour won't be on top in the next hour. How can a Twitter content strategy account for this churn?
1. Post frequently. Like any highly active forum, it's easy to fall to the bottom. Post frequently using your key terms and content will keep you in the forefront of the conversation you are creating. With trending terms changing so often, don't try to follow the crowd - maintain your own voice and create a discussion that's relevant to your followers and potential clients.
Caveat: Don't post the same tweet every two hours. Be creative and remember you are in a conversation - engage users in different ways about your chosen topic.
2. Understand that metrics will be hard to capture. Twitter ROI is probably the hardest of any platform, because the community is so fluid and interaction and engagement changes so often. It's hard to capture the financial impact of building community in any case, and it's especially difficult when measurable term frequencies and ranks change so often. If you see Twitter as part of your overall social media engagement strategy, it will be easier to relax and let the relationships happen naturally.
3. Make your Twitter conversation easy to follow. Remember that the key to being on Twitter is not to be the most popular this minute, it's to be the most relevant over time to your followers. Using consistent terminology and #hashtags is key to this strategy. You want your potential clients to find you because they were searching for the relevant terms to your business, not the top query of the hour. Make your conversation cohesive and consistent with your product and the voice you are projecting for your company. That way, Twitter users who find your tweets will be the ones who are excited to read them.
4. Comment (sparingly) on trending topics. So far this article has been about maintaining your own voice among the constantly changing trends on Twitter. However, there are times when something truly momentous happens, and of course it will trend on Twitter. Natural disasters, the death of key business or political figures, and other major happenings can and should be part of your Twitter stream. It's important to show compassion and that you are aware of the world around you, rather than just pushing your products and services. Again, this is not a race to the top of a trend - it's simply an honest tweet or two about a major event that affects the lives of those around you.
How does your company handle the rapid changes in trends and terms on Twitter? Let me know in the comments!
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