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Twitterjacking: The Art of the Twitter Trend

What is twitterjacking? A short answer is co-opting trending topics on Twitter and using the new-found authority to promote your brand. It comes from the term 'Newsjacking', an idea promoted by bona fide marketing strategist David Meerman Scott.

In their infancy, breaking news events create a ripe opportunity to promote one's brand. Journalism is forever changed since Twitter has emerged as the premiere micro-blogging platform of choice (for now at least). This medium is the perfect opportunity to inject one's brand/message into the global dialogue.

Celebrities, businesses, politicians, brands, and countless other organizations are using twitter to participate in the continuous conversation. Naturally, SEO, social media, and other marketing professionals are always trying to replicate successful campaigns.

Unless you are the NFL (always a in season), Twitter vitality is not guaranteed. A clearly defined strategy gives all handles the opportunity to become influencers, grow a community, engage others, and establish themselves as an authority in their space.

Here are a few topics that are critical to the successful Twitterjack.

Frequencey of Tweets: Too Much or Too Little

Is there such a thing as too much tweeting? There are many parallels between television advertising and Twitter. Most users, 60%, access via their mobile device. This is according to a 7/7/12 tweet from the Official Twitter Advertising handle @TwitterAds.

When a Twitter user opens up the application, they will do either two things; produce their own content, or they will scroll through their recent tweets to see what is happening. Bottom line, if you are not tweeting frequently no one is going to see your tweets, engage, follow, or retweet.

NCAA Men's Championship Tweets

During the 2012 Men's NCAA Basketball Championship, there were 35,000 tweets per minute at one time. A signle tweet during half time is not effective

When you have a small community and want to grow an organic following you need to be visible. A constant stream of solids tweets is the only way twitter users will engage and promote your handle. In the five minutes someone spends on the application, unless they are already thinking about your handle, they are not going to scroll all the way through the hundreds or even thousands of tweets to find out about what they missed.

Creating Trends Early 

Unlike the New York Stock Exchange, Twitter is always open. There is an opportunity anytime for a handle to to contribute to an early trend. If there is relevant news story related to your brand/product it is critical to participate via Twitter as soon as possible. This illustrates authority status.

Influencing a trend is not always about tweeting, it can also be creating an early hash tag or creating a new handle combining the breaking news event and your brand/product. An important case study is the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. 

New Jersey was one of the hardest hit states, millions without power. The major talk radio station NJ 101.5 quickly made use of the hashtag #sandy1015. Residents were able to particiapte on Twitter but also hear their Twitter messages manifest across the state.

Make sure you are aware of relevant news stories as soon as they happen, and there is more harm in tweeting too little than too much.

Join The Conversation

  • Jan 27 Posted 4 years ago Paul Wry Sr. Excellent article !

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