Promote Yourself: Get Retweeted

In our previous post, Power Tool: WeFollow and Other Twitter Directories, we took a quick look at a Twitter Power Tool, WeFollow, as well as other directories of Twitter users.

In this post, we continue the Twitter series with a discussion of how to promote your Twitter account, and how to get retweeted.

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Promote Yourself: Get Retweeted

We’ve mentioned retweeting before — it’s a great way to increase your audience when other people send your tweet out to their followers. It’s the best possible outcome of a tweet. It’s a way to cast your net wider and gather in supporters, and it should be your goal on Twitter. As Web celeb Guy Kawasaki once put it, “You don’t know who the best evangelist will be for your product or service.” So you need to figure out how to get retweeted.

To manually retweet, copy the message and insert RT and the sender’s Twitter handle at the beginning. You can also retweet any post from the Twitter Website by mousing over it. When you mouse over a post, Twitter provides several possibilities below the message:

Twitter retweet example 1

Figure 54 — How to Retweet Example

If you select Retweet, you see a message pop up (in what is known as a light box) similar to the following:

Twitter retweet example 2

Figure 55 — Retweeting Example

If you select Retweet, Twitter will send the message, verbatim, without any commentary from you, to your followers. If you want to edit the message or add your own thoughts, stick to manually copying it to your status window and adding at the beginning the RT and user handle, or using the “via @whoever” convention to indicate you’ve edited or commented on the original tweet. Maddeningly  Twitter does not enable you to quote a tweet and add your commentary from the Website, but they do on some mobile versions.

To get others to retweet you, start off by answering the right question — not the original Twitter question: “What are you doing?” or its current incarnation, “What’s happening?” Instead, answer “What’s interesting?”

Guy Kawasaki is the master of finding interesting things to tweet about (with the help of his staff). My favorite — one that I retweeted almost immediately for no other reason than that it was really interesting — was “Taiwanese scientists bred glow-in-the-dark pigs.”[1] How can you resist?

So what interesting things should you tweet about? Try tweeting about Twitter. Twitter users love to read about:

  • What some analyst thinks of Twitter
  • How to use it better
  • Lists of companies on Twitter
  • Lists of CEOs on Twitter
  • What’s wrong with Twitter?

You can also break news:

  • Follow the Twitter newsbot of CNN (@cnnbrk), retweet its tweets, and get retweeted
  • Find news from niche topics related to your product category
  • If in doubt, tweet it. Most tweets are noise, so yours has as good a chance as any of standing out

Personal branding guru Dan Schwabel produced this list[2] of the most retweetable words and phrases:

1.) You
2.) Twitter
3.) Please
4.) Retweet
5.) Post
6.) Blog
7.) Social
8.) Free
9.) Media
10.) Help
11.) Please Retweet
12.) Great
13.) Social Media
14.) 10
15.) Follow
16.) How to
17.) Top
18.) Blog Post
19.) Check Out
20.) New Blog Post

While this list is probably accurate, we’re not sure how it actually helps! According to Dan’s list, the ultimate retweetable tweet could say “Would you please help retweet my great free new blog post about Top 10 Social Media People to Follow and Check Out?” Perhaps you should write that blog post, and include a link to it at the end of this sure-to-be-retweeted tweet?

Next up: How to Reply on Twitter

Promote Yourself: Get Retweeted is the 112th in a series of excerpts from our book, Be a Person: the Social Operating Manual for Enterprises (itself part of a series for different audiences). We’re just past page 309. At this rate it’ll be a long time before we get through all 430 pages, but luckily, if you’re impatient, the book is available in paper form at and you can save $5 using Coupon Code 6WXG8ABP2Infinite Pipeline book cover

Get our new book, The Infinite Pipeline: How to Master Social Media for Business-to-Business Sales Success online here. You can save $5 using Coupon Code 62YTRFCV

What Others Are Saying

Infinite Pipeline offers practical advice for using social media to extend relationship selling online. It’s a great way to get crazy-busy prospects to pay attention.”
—Jill Konrath, author of SNAP Selling and Selling to Big Companies

“Sales is all about relationships and trust. Infinite Pipeline is the ‘how to’ guide for maximizing social networks to find and build relationships, and generate trust in our digital age.”
—Sam Richter, best-selling author, Take the Cold Out of Cold Calling (2012 Sales book of the year)

Infinite Pipeline will be the authority on building lasting relationships through online social that result in bottom line business.”
—Lori Ruff, The LinkedIn Diva, Speaker/Author and CEO of Integrated Alliances

[1] Glow-in-the-dark pigs!

[2] Dan Schwabel’s list: