What’s the deal with the RTs?
Every once in a while on Twitter, you will notice that at the beginning of a tweet, there are the letters “RT” before the actual comment or link. If you followed the advice on my last post about starting and becoming a master on Twitter and have downloaded TweetDeck , you would easily know that RT is short for Retweet.
A Retweet simply indicates that a person values a tweet so much that she tweets it word for word to her followers so that they can benefit from it too. Being Retweeted is a high honor because it means that people are willing to put their own reputation on the line and risk losing followers just to get your message across to more people.
Even Tech Crunch and some Twitter Experts consider Retweets the best indicators of a person’s authority and influence on Twitter (as opposed to follower count). There are also numerous sites that just track Retweeted topics or how many Retweets a person has.
Clearly, Retweets has its place of significance on Twitter, and you should RT often. Why?
1. Creating Value for your Twitter Followers
Twitter is micro-blogging. Just like blogging, people will only read your tweets if it creates value for them. You need to tweet things that are brilliant, hilarious, amazing, ingenious, unique or at least interesting to your followers to make them feel that you are worth the follow. However, you can’t always come up with the best things yourself. Retweeting is a great way to be that provider of great information without doing the work yourself.
2. Get noticed by the people you are Retweeting
How often do you follow someone on Twitter without her following you back? You may have sent @ messages to that person, but you know she gets 400 everyday so she doesn’t respond to you anyway. But you still want to get noticed. A good way for people to notice you is to Retweet what they have to say. Most influencers on Twitter do a keyword search on their own name, so if you Retweet them, they WILL see it. After Retweeting them a few times, they may become more familiar with you, follow you if you are interesting, or even Retweet your stuff as a gesture of gratitude!
3. Teach your followers how to Retweet
No matter how brilliant your tweets are, none of your followers will retweet what you have to say if they don’t know what retweeting is or don’t know how to do it. That’s why you have to educate them. By regularly retweeting good content, your followers will begin to understand what this RT business is all about, and they may begin to Retweet your stuff too. If every single one of your followers know how to retweet, you’ll start seeing your name pile up on the Retweet Ranks!