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Social Media Ninjitsu | How To Build Social Capital On Twitter
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social capital on twitter

HOW TO BUILD SOCIAL CAPITAL ON TWITTER


So what exactly is social capital?

 

Here is Wikipedia on the topic:

Social capital is a form of economic and cultural capital in which social networks are central, transactions are marked by reciprocitytrust, and cooperation, and market agents produce goods and services not mainly for themselves, but for a common good.

 

When buying Facebook or Twitter Ads it may be costing you for every page like or every bit of engagement you are getting through that ad. That is physical capital, because it involves actual cash. Liking someone’s post or commenting on it doesn’t have a cost. At least as far as I know! This is not just simply the case of  “scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours”. It may seem obvious, and yet has big implications for social media marketers in this time and age, especially for those lamenting about how Facebook and Instagram’s recent algorithm changes have taken away so much engagement from us that some of us have spent years cultivating. And now the new changes water down those benefits.

 

The sharing economy offers a way of out the “pay to play” conundrum. It comes in the form of reciprocal likes, comments, mentions, which – taken together and done consistently are the stuff of an engaged, die-hard, and loyal base of followers.

 


Be generous in your mentions

 

Find more excuses to drop someone else’s Twitter handle into your tweets to stimulate conversation. Drop more than one twitter handle if you can grow a group conversation.

 

Here’s a couple great reasons to do this:

 

Quite often you might post an article from the web. This might take an extra moment or two, but it’s really worth doing a little Googling to find out if the author has a Twitter account. Once you do, find out if they are on Twitter. Viola! Now you have a mention worth making. The author of that article will thank you, and might even return the favor. At the very least it builds goodwill, and that is social capital.

 

An example of a tweet that gives a mention both to the publisher and the author of the piece.

twitter mentions

Mentioning the author of the post in your tweet will not go unnoticed to the person whose content you’re sharing. They may even return the favor down the road.

 


Use mentions to start a group conversation and outreach to certain influencers

 

Only do this if the tweet you are considering for people you’re mentioning is of a topic and contains hashtags that are relevant to them. Having said that, every opportunity should be made to do this, as Twitter is an excellent (and in my opinion the best) way to generate online group conversations. A combination of multiple twitter handles and hashtags can go a long way.

Try experimenting with Tweets using mentions of multiple people to stimulate responses

Try experimenting with Tweets using mentions of multiple people to stimulate responses

 


Thank Retweeters with a GIFt

 

The pun is actually intended. A great way to thank new followers or retweets of your content is to literally give them a gift they can all see. Try a GIF for example. It doesn’t have to be a gif image. It can be a simple graphic or picture that conveys the message. So in this case: .png, .jpg, .gif – any of these will do. It’s the thought that counts.

thank new followers or retweeters

Thanking new followers, especially engaged followers, or retweeters can pay dividends in terms of more engagement

 

 


Ask for a retweet

asking-for-rts-and-comments

Asking or retweets and or comments can work wonders.

 

A great way to engage your users is to post a question. Even better: Ask them to share their thoughts. You’d be surprised how so simple a strategy can work wonders. A common approach is to say “Pls RT if you agree or can relate”..

 

Here’s an example:

 

Ask questions, or ask for comments

 

Questions are great, especially when asking for an opinion, or when giving a survey, as they certainly invite comments as well as likes, and who knows?

 

Maybe also a retweet? Why not? There’s nothing wrong with it, and people do it all the time.

 

That being said, you can try both 1). questions or comments, and 2). asking for a retweet at the same time. What you see below is a common tactic:

 

Asking for retweets and comments

Try asking a question or ask for a comment and a retweet at the same time.

 

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