How our Twitter strategy has changed over time (and what you can learn from our mistakes and wins)

Twitter has changed a lot over the years and so our Twitter strategy has also changed accordingly. We’ve taken a look back at some big moments in our brand and approach to Twitter and wanted to share the distilled version of what we learned from all the good (and the bad) that we found.

Want to follow us in the now? Find us @UnionMetrics.

Brand transitions

In case you didn’t know, we haven’t always been Union Metrics! Once upon a time we were called Appozite, but we’ve always been the makers of TweetReach. In the past few years we’ve transitioned from using @tweetreachapp on Twitter as our main presence (around since 2009, but not active anymore) to @UnionMetrics (around since 2012). You can see how even our first tweets from each account differed, as we had 3 more years of Twitter experience on the latter:

Brand transitions are never easy but can be relatively painless if you plan them well. First and foremost you want to be sure you have a plan for finding brand mentions and gently- yet relentlessly- correcting them. A lot of people use TweetReach but aren’t aware that it’s made by Union Metrics, so we’ve spent a lot of time leaving comments on blogs and replying to tweets to let people know that TweetReach and Union Metrics Twitter snapshot reports (and more comprehensive Twitter analytics) are one and the same.

We wound down activity on the @tweetreachapp handle slowly, eventually changing the bio to reflect that we tweet almost exclusively from @UnionMetrics now with just the occasional reminder that anyone finding us there should move over to UM. We also made sure we were following everyone we had been following on TR from the UM handle, then unfollowed everyone from TR. At least one follower did ask why we unfollowed them, but understood completely when we said we were simply moving activity from one handle to another.

Media strategy

As Twitter has evolved so have the ways to tweet; they added photos in 2011, followed over the years by support for video, GIFs and the addition of their other apps Vine and Periscope. What once was limited to 140 characters in words only became limited to that plus whatever media a user thought would best capture the idea of their tweet.

We’ve done our best to experiment with these options over the years, now adding images and GIFs to tweets as often as possible when it’s appropriate. Aside from the fact that photos are eye-catching and can communicate ideas quickly, they also take up more space in a Twitter timeline, giving your brand more of a chance to be noticed by fans and followers.

Posting cadence

There are and have been many different theories behind how often and when brands or anyone on Twitter should post. It’s a fast-moving stream that can definitely be updated more often than something more static like the Facebook News Feed, but there’s still work that goes into finding the right balance between posting brand related content, relevant external content and whatever else makes sense for your brand and audience communication.

We continue to test, but definitely recommend always scheduling some tweets outside of U.S. business hours- evenings and weekends, plus late night/very early morning hours- since it’s truly a global community we live in. (This can also let you know if part of your international audience is being underserved.)

Finally, always schedule a mix of different content; you never want to be 100% promotional about your brand.

Taking our own advice

We try to make it a point to practice what we preach here on our blog by doing regular reviews of our own data and deciding where we can do better and what just isn’t working and needs to be cut out of our strategy or at least cut down. Always aim for progress, not perfection!