Keywords and Questions Lead to Twitter Engagement

Like a Box of Chocolates Mixed with Pain

My love/hate relationship with Twitter is at an all time high, and because my timeline is a mix of dank memes and constant negative national news, I never know what I’m going to get when I log in.
Recently though, I’ve had a few strange internet happenings that gave me a larger audience than I’m used to.

The other week, I mindlessly Tweeted out a question as I packed up my bag for a road trip.

Now I’m pretty cautious about what I Tweet – often taking 5-10 minutes reading and rereading something before I hit send, and even then I’m likely to delete it immediately or store it in the drafts.

However, I sent off a standard text Tweet asking for suggestions of podcasts that I might like to listen to during the upcoming trip.

Even as I write this now, I feel ashamed for forgetting punctuation.

FWIF: The only two podcasts I subscribe to are “Stuff You Should Know” and “Reply All.” Both are incredibly entertaining and educational, but we all need to switch things up now and again.

The very first response was from someone I know personally, who suggested that I listen to “Call Her Daddy.” I’m not going to go into details about what that is but from the few clips I’ve heard, it’s mostly females sharing their sex stories, which leads me to believe my friend was trolling me.

A few other responses were genuine from friends. Sports stuff, prison stories, journalistic things… and then the self promotions began. During the drive I switched my phone to airplane mode (a safe practice anyway) as I was tired of it buzzing from my cup holder. By the end of the next day I had received 67 responses to my original tweet.

The fact that my mentions were flooded with accounts wanting me to listen to their podcasts shows that many of them are taking full advantage of following Twitter keywords. 

For those unsure of what keywords are, please familiarize yourself here.

In this case, I’d venture a guess that “suggestion + podcast” were the hit words that did the trick.

In the past, I’ve tweeted to promote brands, news articles, and services but never actually for podcasts. Not surprisingly, when I searched “best ways to promote a podcast on Twitter,” there were plenty of podcasts on the subject. Content is king.

I’ve worked as a journalist in the 21st century so I’m fairly familiar with strangers online telling me to do things. But looking at the mess of responses made me wonder why podcasts in particular were jumping to grab my (and anyone on the websites) attention.

The thing is, everyone has a podcast. You probably know someone who has their own.  
According to 2019 Podcast Stats and Facts, over half of the population in the United States has listened to a podcast. Plus the data says there are over 750,000 podcasts out there, which means the diversity of subjects can attract listeners with all different perspectives and interests.

The strategy of spreading your podcast to other social channels, whether that’s Twitter, Facebook or Instagram requires changing tactics, as all have different rules and algorithms for sharing and communicating. Because it’s easy to find people, topics, and relevancy, Twitter proves to be king in this realm.

For example: I’m not very likely to post a pic on IG and hashtag it with #WhatAreSomeGoodPodcastSuggestions ?

There are no postings with that hashtag at the time of publication.

Statistically, the fact that I asked a question also meant that it was supposed to get more engagement. A useful article by QuickSprout says people are 21 percent more likely to engage with a Tweet if it’s asking a question.

“What should I have for lunch?” Hypothetically will get more engagement than “I don’t know what to eat for lunch.”

By looking at successful accounts, including media outlets, sports teams and consumer goods, what stands out is a mixed media timeline. Most normal people don’t always want to read 2000 word articles nor do they always want to watch 6 minute videos. However, sprinkled in with a regular feed of text, pictures, and links, those larger pieces of content do quite well.

My New Friend Meyers Leonard

The highest level of engagement and impressions that one of my Tweets ever received was when I Tweeted at Meyers Leonard, who at the time was playing center for the Portland Trail Blazers.

I won’t get into the reason behind why I purchased these shorts with the cursive word, “Bless” written across the crotch. But they are incredibly comfortable and have deep pockets, a rarity in athletic wear.

Anyway, the lettering was coming off and I was bored, so I decided to Tweet at Meyers.
To my surprise he responded! Very kindly at that. Again, my phone was consistently buzzing the rest of the day, as accounts like @blazerfan61 favorited his response.

Since then, Meyers has been traded and I understand that the acclimation to South Beach and career transition takes priority over getting me new shorts. 

However, if you’re reading this Meyers, best of luck and my shipping address is the same!

The Sacramento Kings Acknowledge my Instagram

As stated previously, the Kings have an incredible Instagram account. While writing this piece, I had an opportunity to contribute to the fun and like to think I properly seized it.

After the account responded positively to my comment, I took my own account off of private. Thinking that I might get some more likes with my account highlighted.

A big step for me. Remember – despite posting fairly frequently, I still think a lot about how people will view my content as a reflection of myself. 

My comment received over 600 likes, which is more than any other comment, picture or article I’ve ever put on the internet. I’m not sure how many people viewed my pictures from the Kings link, but a few liked my old post of Buddy Hield signing autographs at the California Classic. 

My brief moment of internet popularity wasn’t all glamour and glory though. As some account, who I inferred belongs to a young teen due to their name @lakersandbarca, commented a clown emoji on my most recent post. A practice that, I’m told, is how the kids roast each other these days.

*eye roll emoji*

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