Last night, I took part in #journchat (a weekly conversation about media and PR conducted via Twitter).
As it was a ‘conversation’ (driven mainly by questions courtesy of the adjudicator), I was interested to see what kind of participant I had been during the session.
– Did I add value with my contributions?
– Did I exchange / engage with others?
– Did I bring outside people into the conversation that could add value?
– Did I highlight comments made by others that I thought were valuable?
So post #journchat, I dropped my Twitter handle into http://search.twitter.com to get an idea of my ‘behaviour’.
Little did I know that I’d stumble on a really simple way to graphically assess my Tweeting patterns, that can be used for an ‘event’ like this one or as a semi-regular ‘health’ check.
After looking at the conversation, I recognised five core Tweet ‘exchanges’ (represented below):
Put simply, the best way to make the most out of Twitter is to have an even balance, made up of the five exchanges / Tweet-types above.
I then looked at a passage of my Tweets from that conversation to see if I’d maintained a balance.
The following excerpt, very simply, tells me about my ‘performance’.
Now, fortunately (and thanks to some fortuitous editing!), my balance during this period of the conversation was pretty decent.
But, it’s not always easy to maintain a balance of contributing, mentioning, endorsing, being endorsed and replying.
What would have been worrying is if there was simply a page of only one or two exchange types on the page i.e. just retweets or just broadcast contributions.
Often times brands will look at how they’re are preforming using sophisticated tools like Twitalyzer or Klout, which are great tools, but my trouble with them is they focus too much on ‘influence’ and are quite confusing for the everyday Tweeter – when really your overall contribution and engagement is what matters most.
Twitter is a conversation medium.
So, if you are an individual user or running a brand account, hop over to http://search.twtter.com every once in a while and scroll through your exchanges.
Balance of the five = fantastic.
Too much of a good thing = adjust, and get back at it.
Next time you are at a dinner party, think about the five ‘exchanges’ highlighted above – I’m pretty confident that the best ‘conversationalists’ around that table inject original contributions (good Tweet, followed by possibly being RT’d), challenge things (@ reply), take part in one-to-one conversations (@ to @) and add value to points made by others (RT + comment).
If you conduct this little test and make a discovery, tell us about it in the comments box below.