By Ann Smarty
Twitter is always a highly recommended social media channel to promote your brand online. But it’s not easy to build a following. It’s even harder to persuade followers to click through to your site—and convert.
Indeed, historically, Twitter traffic has had one of the lowest conversion rates compared to other social media giants. Yet Twitter can be a reliable source of both clicks and conversions.
If you’re looking for a quick win or hack, read something else (which—spoiler alert—won’t work). But if you want to learn a tried-and-true process that does work, here you go.
If it’s hard to succeed on Twitter, why bother?
Based on third-party stats, Twitter has around 330 million monthly users globally. For its size alone, it’s a market worth exploring. I personally love Twitter for two reasons:
- It’s incredibly open. You can reach out or connect to just about anyone. You don’t have to be friends to talk to someone, and users can discover your tweets even if they’re outside your immediate network of followers—you’re not limited by your pool of connections.
- Unlike Facebook and Instagram, Twitter still gives you organic visibility. I resort to Twitter advertising only rarely—my organic reach is pretty solid. Any person or brand, big or small, can get results from Twitter almost immediately.
That said, not everything works.
What hasn’t worked for me on Twitter
Despite over a decade on Twitter and more than 66,000 followers, I’ve never really seen an impact from the following tactics, despite the fact that they’re extolled as “best practices” in most guides to Twitter marketing:
Using any kind of hashtags. Used strategically (e.g., tweeting to trending hashtags), hashtags may help with visibility for your tweets, but I’ve never won many link clinks, even on tweets with high engagement.
That may be because hashtags are clickable, so they steal clicks from links in your tweets. I still use hashtags for tweeting my articles but keep conversion-oriented tweets (i.e., those linking to a landing page) as clean as I can.
Using tools that recommend your “best time to tweet.” I’ve used a variety of tools that monitor your activity and help you schedule updates for your most successful time slots.
I’ve failed to see any noticeable impact in tweet performance or clicks, so I ended up canceling my subscription to those tools. Either those tools are poorly made, or there is no “best time to tweet.”
Uploading native images. Like hashtags, tweeted images may help with engagement (i.e. likes, comments, retweets), but I couldn’t find any correlation between using images inside tweets and more clicks or conversions.
(I actually have a theory that tweeted images hurt traffic and conversions—they’re another click-stealer.)
Those failures aside, here’s the seven-step process that has helped me earn clicks and conversions on Twitter.
How to earn clicks and conversions on Twitter
Step 1: Spend some time building your Twitter profile
You don’t need thousands of Twitter followers to start generating traffic and conversions. “Building your Twitter profile” is actually pretty doable: