How To Retweet
by Jo Shaer, on July 4, 2013
How To See A Retweet
A Retweet (or an RT as it becomes abbreviated when you type it onto Hootsuite or schedule a post via Buffer) is a way of sharing content that you have enjoyed with your followers. In your own Twitter feed, you can see which posts have been retweeted because it says so underneath them.
Retweets from your followers appear in your What's Happening timeline and look like regular tweets but have the Retweeted by text underneath to distinguish them. However, if you have a Twitter block in activation then you will not see retweets from any of those people.
Any Retweet that you make is visible in your home timeline which you can access via the profile button on your twitter site.
However, unless you have Hootsuite or Tweetdeck set up with a column for retweets, it is not possible to view a person's retweet history other than by searching through the entire list of tweets on that profile to find the ones marked with Retweet icons.
To find out which of your Tweets have been retweeted, you can set up a column in Hootsuite or Tweetdeck. However, whilst Twitter Help on How To Retweet says that you can also do this in your regular Twitter account by clicking Connect in the top navigation bar and selecting interactions to see all activity about your tweets, I cannot find any such button and the link explaining it is broken. What I did notice was that, if you click the @YourName tab on the Home Feed, it gives you a list of your mentions and also things that people have tweeted 'via' you. This is another way of retweeting that allows you to customise the tweet with your own views, whilst still crediting the original author.
How To Retweet - The Way It Works
If you see information that you enjoy and you feel would be valuable to others in your niche, retweet. It will help to build your own reputation as well as gaining favour with those whose content you have enjoyed. If anyone retweets you, make sure to thank them.
As I explained in both How Does Twitter Work and How Does Twitter Work For Business, because you're making a point of following users who are related to or interested in your niche, you are bound to see status updates with links to posts or articles on the subject that you will find of interest.
On your Twitter Home page, click the tab called Timeline. This shows all the tweets from those you follow and the retweet button is sited underneath each individual tweet. Hover over and you will see it appear.
If you see a status update that piques your interest, click the link and follow it through. Should that article or post be entertaining or educational, go back to your Timeline and hover over the post. Click the retweet button which should appear underneath the post. This will then appear on the Timelines of all your followers. You also have the option to Reply or Favourite the tweet.
To make your comment stand out from any others who might have done a standard Retweet or just to put your slant on the status update, you can use the via @AuthorsName. This credits the source but allows you to personalise the tweet for your own followers, giving originality and focus.
But, remember, there’s no point in knowing how to retweet and then using the skill to flood your followers with rubbish. It has to be quality and relevant. If you find it interesting, then so might someone else who wants to know more about your niche. If you just retweet anything, people will stop reading your retweets because they will come to regard them as being a waste of their time.
This is why it is never a good idea to use automated bots or other such programs since these are unable to differentiate between good and bad. They are set up to retweet anything and everything which will not enhance your reputation or niche authority on Twitter.
To credit a Tweet's author, Retweets show the profile pic, user name of the original author and Retweeted by information at the bottom with the familiar symbol. Because a retweet includes the twitter name of the original poster, they will be notified - usually by email - and it also appears in their @mention column on Hootsuite and in the main Twitter account. This is an integral part of the success of Twitter and why it's so important that users understand how to retweet.
A retweet is like highlighting the needle in a haystack or being at a party and having someone call your name from the other side of the room above the hubbub of chatter. You tune in to the sound of your own name and if you retweet someone on a regular basis, they will notice you. If they like what you say, they may follow you back and start retweeting your content to their own followers.
If you want to put the process on steroids, if someone tweets something with a link and you think it’s worth retweeting, visit the link and if the post has social icons for Facebook or Google+1, Stumbleupon, etc, you can share it across those social media platforms too. A retweet is the Twitter equivalent of a like on Facebook or a +1 on Google. Going this extra mile really helps to get you noticed by other influencers in your niche.
The correct etiquette when someone retweets you is to say thank you and for then the retweeter will respond to prove that it was not an autobot but a human retweet. Each little connection starts to build your own network and the beauty is that you don't have to write anything yourself. So long as you retweet and use the @OriginaAuthorsName to give the credit, you can just share other people's good content, getting yourself associated with the regular tweeting of valuable information and earning the notice and gratitude of those influencers who produced the content in the first place. What better way of pleasing someone than by telling the world how great their posts are. Everyone likes to see their name mentioned.
How To Stop Retweets
I discovered today that, whilst you cannot turn off all Retweets, you can actually disable Retweets from any particular account. Click on their username anywhere on Twitter or go to their full profile by typing http://www.twitter.com/accountusername. Next to the 'Following' button, there is a green version of the Retweet symbol which you can click to disable Retweets from that user.
If you see a new name in your timeline, it is because someone you follow retweeted something they thought you should see but if you no longer wish to see those updates, you can turn off retweets from that person in the future, althought tweets which have already been posted will remain on your timeline.
So, there you have it, how to retweet - although with the changes that Twitter are currently introducing, I will be back to keep this post up to date with the latest procedures.