Are you looking for more replies, engagement, clicks and retweets for your Twitter efforts?
Let’s be honest – any business that takes the time to network on this platform is looking for all of these things, and it seems images could provide the answer for each. Let’s consider some statistics. MassPlanner states, “Infographics are “liked” and shared on social media three times more than other any other type of content.” Buffer Social found that “Tweets with images receive 150% more retweets than tweets without images,” while Twitter states, “Tweets with photos get 313% more engagement.”
So now that we know why we should be spending time on images for Twitter, let’s move onto how we should be using them.
Images for Twitter – 5 top tips (and the mistakes to avoid)
Brand your visuals
Don’t allow your efforts to go unrewarded when your images are re-tweeted – use a tool such as Pablo to add a watermark to the images you create. This can also easily be done in Photoshop (with helpful tutorials found on the Adobe website) by using templates, ensuring the design and font is the same with each image.
Create original visual content for Twitter and Twitter alone
Don’t re-use images across all of your social channels – doing so will impact engagement. Buffer Social found that Tweets with Instagram images are 42% less likely to be re-tweeted, so in order to build engagement it is important to take different images for each platform you want to post on.
It is also worth remembering that images shared from Instagram to Twitter don’t actually show up on the Twitter timeline – instead the tweet includes a link to Instagram. If you were to remain sharing photos from the Instagram platform, it is vital to post them with an engaging line of description and relevant hashtags to influence people to click through. However, it is much more effective to simply upload using Twitter’s dedicated image uploader – this way the image will show up on timelines and stimulate far more interest.
Infographics – share-ability, engagement and expertise
Whilst written content on your blog provides you with a chance to demonstrate your industry knowledge to your fellow equestrian businesses, images are more digestible and grab attention more easily than content that must be clicked through to.
Infographics provide the best of both worlds – capturing audience attention with vibrant visuals, whilst also allowing you to provide value in the way of facts, stats or tips. For example, if you’re a specialist equestrian feed manufacturer, your infographic can demonstrate trends in the industry that your equestrian retailers will be interested in. This could include growth in the market for certain products and price rises and falls in percentages owing to trading conditions.
Nurture engagement by running a competition
Foster engagement by using your images for competitions and online contests. For example: ‘CONTEST: First three people that can guess where our filly is grazing wins…. #findthefilly.’
Competitions make for extremely shareable content and the addition of relevant images help broaden the audience as well as build attention. Again watermarks or some form of branding should be added to ensure all attention is focused on your company, and this also helps to build brand awareness with the online community you are targetting.
The key components of a succesful Twitter competition are having a defined goal with carefully selected plans. Make sure you track your campaign to learn what works well for your target audience. This includes looking at prize value, entry requirements, optimum tweet times as well as information about the entrants, such as age, location and potentially, some pointers on income.
Image size and composition – get your dimensions right
Twitter works to set measurement ratios for images – resulting in images that are automatically cut down, with images that are two tall or two wide having parts removed unless the user clicks on the image to see it in its full size. Whilst this may be ok for an image of a Shetland pony, you may find your Shire isn’t being fully shown unless clicked upon. To make sure your image displays as it should, edit it to be 800 x 400 or 1,000 x 500 — or any size at a 2:1 ratio (Twitter also has an upload limit of 3MB, and you need to work to a maximum image size of 1024 x 512).
Tapping into the equestrian community
Twitter is an extremely useful tool for sharing but more importantly, for interacting with your clients, potential clients and the general equestrian community. It’s ease of use and speed at which interactions can be made makes it one of the most user-friendly forms of social media. The number of equestrian users has also increased dramatically and finding out how to tap into this audience is very useful to improve engagement.
The online equestrian community has organised dedicated daily hashtags, creating a huge conversation for all who use the relevant hashtags. Mainly held from 8 – 9 pm each evening of the week, these hashtags include:
Tuesday: #DressageHour and #PonyHour (9-10pm)
Friday: #HorseBizHour (4-5pm) and #TackRoomFriday
Joining the conversation with relevant hashtags not only brings your tweets onto the timeline of interested users, but it also brings opportunities of free advertising as well as collaborations. The users that run the main hashtag accounts (such as #HorseHour) organise regular sponsorship opportunities for companies, which benefit the company by displaying its content to a wider and completely relevant audience. This can be in the form of a competition, simple hashtag or regular mentions to send users back through to the company’s official Twitter account.
Twitter and images go together like a horse and cart – however that’s not to say that this platform, like all other social networks, aren’t without their challenges. The need to keep up with the latest trends, tips and changes is a must – and to make the most of this medium, you may need a professional helping hand. If you believe that we could help you, feel free to get in touch to find out more about our social media marketing.
For those of you yet to explore all that Twitter has to offer, here is a roundup of all the basics you need to know before sending your first tweet.
What is a tweet?
A tweet is simply a Twitter message. It can contain up to 140 characters of text, as well as photos, videos, locations and other forms of media. Public by default, tweets will show up in Twitter timelines and searches unless the account is private.
What is a Retweet?
Retweets are tweets that are ‘re-shared’ to the followers of another user. You have the option to either ‘Quote Tweet’, which allows you to add a comment or image along with the original tweet, or just a simple Retweet that repeats the original tweet onto you timeline. Retweets are a great way to add your voice to a topic, show support and it enables you to connect to the original poster while furthering the message.
Does my handle matter?
Your handle is simply your user or account name, such as @PressPointMedia or @EBTrade. It is important to use consistent handles across all social media networks, so try and use the same name across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – it really helps with discoverability.
Twitter allows you to tag another user’s handle within your tweets, otherwise known as a mention. Mentions notify the users that have been tagged, enabling them to respond. Mentions work like hyperlinks, allowing users to click the tagged user and visit their profile.
Direct message (DM) allows you to communicate privately with other users, but DM’s can only be sent as long as the two users follow one another.
If you need expert advice on how to make Twitter work for you, PressPoint Countryside & Equestrian is here to help.