John is one of my favorite clients.

  • Passionate about his work
  • Still going strong in his 70s
  • But best of all –

John is a walking sound bite.

Someone like John is every business writer’s dream.

When he speaks, you can almost see the quotation marks around one of his clever comments.

That’s how I view the plugins that allow readers to click and tweet your best pearls. However, have you noticed some of those boxed tweet enticements fall flat?

How can your posts create the next walking sound bite? The kind your readers want to share. Click To Tweet

Tweet This or Not

If you are unfamiliar with the various plugins, WPLift rated their favorite plugins for adding tweet boxes to your posts.

I am on my second plugin, Better Click to Tweet. Apparently, the creators of my first one abandoned the maintenance. Never a good thing in our hacking world.

Why would you want to consider adding one of the plugins? I see three good reasons.

  1. Readers are more likely to click than comment.
  2. Tweets are easy to scan.
  3. Click to tweet text keeps your message simple, clear, and uniquely yours.

However, tweet boxes are only as good as what you put inside them.

Think of tweet boxes like giving a present.

  • The person either loves it (making you feel good, too)
  • Or they dump it in the nearest trash

Take time to get the present right.

3 Common ‘Tweet This’ Mistakes

Consider the point of these tweet titans. You want readers to click to tweet, right? But, you’d also like the tweet to bring people back to your site. At least in the ideal world.

So, with those points in mind, the following are common mistakes in creating Click to tweet text.

#1 – The Duh Tweet

We all do it. We state the obvious. You know, those dashed off statements that leave readers muttering – Duh.

The following are a few examples of Duh Duds. These are images I changed to protect the innocent (which may include me as I’ve done a Duh or two). So, don’t frustrate yourself by trying to click on the blue bird.

But, I love to lose subscribers. Duh.

Business writing is often boring, but I don’t know too many writers who strive for boring. Duh.

Quick Duh check – read your “click to tweet” text and add the word – Duh. Does it fit?

Tweet This Not That

Instead of stating the obvious (the unwelcome loss of subscribers), identify what may contribute to that.

Or try this one on for size.

#2 – The Too Clever for Your Own Good Tweet

My mind can be a strange and scary place. I’ve written words I thought were ingenious, only to discover I’m alone in that belief.

Even if some of your readers “get it,” why would you want others to be in the dark?

Make sure your Click to tweet text doesn't need a decoder ring to understand. Click To Tweet

Okay, the above tweet box IS one you can Click to tweet.

#3 – The Taken Out of Context Tweet

How often have you heard someone under siege by media say their statement was taken out of context? You could say the same about some Click to tweet text.

  • Without the surrounding arms of your post, your meaning could be misconstrued
  • Or your words may not make sense without the accompanying post

Imagine if you saw the following on Twitter.

Huh? What step? What’s missing? What the heck are they talking about? What’s missing here is context.

Of course, there is the potential to go viral with the comments this could prompt in the Twitterverse.

And then there are the tweets that invite a misconstrued interpretation.

Uh, what are we talking about here? Ohhhh…business communication. Right.

Tweet This Fix

Bless the genius who first came up with the Click to tweet concept. The best ones become the sound bite people love to share.

Visualize your Click to tweet text on Twitter without the rest of your post. Ask yourself these three questions.

  1. Does the tweet state the obvious? (the Duh factor)
  2. Could the tweet confuse readers?
  3. Does it miss the connection to your post topic?

If you answered Yes on any of the three questions, rethink what you put inside the box.

A maxim is an expression of a general truth or principle. For example, You’re never too old to learn. You could say a maxim was the precursor to the sound bite.

Mark Twain had this to say about the “proper proportions” to a maxim.

“A minimum of sound to a maximum of sense.”

Makes sense to me. How about you?

  • Do you use Click to tweet boxes?
  • What tips do you have?
  • Do you have examples of a great sound bite?

Please share your thoughts in Comments. And, of course, feel free to Click to tweet on one of the above “live” tweet boxes.

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Helping you Keep it simple, clear & uniquely yours – contact me for help with your business writing needs.

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BigStock Photo Credit

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