A significant number of people retweet without actually clicking on the link themselves, let alone reading the content they are retweeting.
Research undertaken by marketing experts Hubspot suggests that retweeting may not be an effective measure of reader engagement. Over 16% of the tweets analysed generated more retweets than actual clicks. In other words more people are retweeting than are actually reading or quality checking the content.
The research analysed 2.7 million tweets that contained links and discovered that:
- There is no significant link between the number of retweets and the number of clickthroughs
- 14.6% of retweeted tweets had 0 clicks
- Tweets that contained the word ‘retweet’ were retweeted more frequently but clicked on less often
- Tweets containing the @ symbol were retweeted less frequently but clicked more often
- Tweets including the words ‘please retweet’ are likely to be retweeted four times more than those that do not include that phrase
Ask for the retweet
Retweeting and clickthroughs can perform different functions. Being retweeted can help you establish yourself as a thought leader and can generate more followers – and simply asking for retweets can be effective in achieving this.
Clickthroughs can drive more traffic to your website/blog and generate new customers. Hubspot recommends placing your link 25% into your tweet and keeping to 120—130 characters in length in order to generate the most clickthroughs.