Frequently, I am asked for tips on how to get a hashtag, name or topic trending on Twitter. If I can come up with a fool proof equation to hand out, guaranteeing a Twitter trend at any given time, I would retire in the Maldives with my husband, coconut rum, and Sade serenading us 24/7.
In other words, there are just no guarantees with trending.
However, after years of watching what trends and how it happens, I do have some handy tips that could help the next time your group wants to get your witty hashtag trending up there with #TWUG & #HarryStyles.
- Keep in mind that the goal is to get as many tweets with your hashtag or phrase out in a very concentrated time. 10,000 tweets about #HotDogs in a 24 hour period of time isn’t going to trend. But 10,000 tweets about #HotDogs in 30 minutes has potential. Designate a window and stick to it. There has to be a plan.
- Be sure to choose a hashtag that is succinct, accurate and easy to remember. The number one problem I notice is a hashtag being butchered with misspellings and errors. The longer your hashtag is, the more likely it is to be misspelled. Keep it precise. #DidYouKnowItsNationalCatDay vs #NationalCatDay
- Equally as important to tweeting your hashtag often and in a short or specific window is how you tweet it. Part of a trend is how many times the hashtag has the potential of being seen in a timeline.
For instance, let’s say Adam Levine tweeted,
“Hey @SurferWife, I think I’m in love with you! #MarryMeSurferWife”
All 5.6 million of his followers would have the potential of seeing the hashtag #MarryMeSurferWife. Now let’s say, I had tweeted Adam Levine this,
“Hi @AdamLevine, who are you in love with?”
and he simply replied back to me,
“@Surferwife Hey @SurferWife, I think I’m in love with you! #MarryMeSurferWife”
The only people that would see his hashtag in their timeline are only the people that follow both him and myself. So, I don’t know, maybe 100? The rest of the 5.6 million that follow him wouldn’t have that hashtag in their timeline. Whenever your tweet starts with the @ symbol followed by the name, the only people that see it are the people that follow both accounts having the conversation.
So, when you want to trend something, it’s not nearly as helpful to reply to someone with the hashtag in your tweet as it is to tweet the hashtag as a stand alone tweet for all to see.
Good for trending:
Not so good for trending:
Do you see the difference? The second tweet will only show up for people who follow both @Runningman215 and myself. Thus allowing for only a handful of impressions. The first tweet shows up in all 4,990 timelines of people that follow me. If you absolutely MUST reply, simply throw a . in front of the person’s @name you’re replying to and it suddenly turns into a tweet that goes to all of your followers!
As a sidenote, retweeting someone’s tweet with the hashtag is also great. This is the same as sending out your own tweet because the retweet is going out to everyone in your timeline.
So, to recap tips and tricks to get your hashtag trending on Twitter:
1. Lots of tweets in a short window.
2. Choose a good hashtag. Triple check that you’re tweeting it correctly.
3. Send out your own tweet with the hashtag or RT others using the hashtag. Replying to a tweet with the hashtag in your tweet is not nearly as effective as the first to options.
4. I really hope Adam Levine IS in love with me.