Political campaigns are beginning to learn that Twitter has a memory, and anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of public opinion. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. While every day is new in politics, most fundamental messaging has persistent value. An attack that works one day may well work the next. The question is simply which tweets can work again and again while retaining their impact. Retweet count is the best measure of effectiveness and re-usability. Dan Zarrella explains this better than I ever could,
You don’t spread ideas just because they are “good,” you spread them because of some other trigger or set of triggers has been pulled in your brain…The advent of the web changed how memes spread: it made them spread faster, it exposed them to more people, and it removed many of the constraints imposed by the limits of human memory. But there is one change that dwarfs them all: observability. We can now compare millions of viral ideas to uncover the building blocks of contagiousness. ReTweets may seem like a small idea, but that small idea is the first real window into how ideas spread from person to person. For the first time in human history we can begin to gaze into the inner workings of the contagious idea.
Almost every Twitter user gets excited when something they send gets retweeted en masse. Hardly anybody looks back to see what worked in a systematic manner to determine future messaging. Our parody account @MittRmoney constantly cycles through a large database of tweets which we then track using the Twitter API. Below, you can see the 1000 most shared tweets based on the last 10,000 that were sent. We’ve found that almost all of these messages can be sent day after day, and still be retweeted again and again. Of course, only a small fraction of your followers ever see each tweet, which explains part of their durability. You don’t have to worry about why it works – the fact is it does. Some trigger or other gets pulled every time people see these ideas.
If you’re a political campaign, you shouldn’t repeat yourself. It’s not professional. Yet you can still look back to see what worked, and perhaps more importantly what didn’t, to determine the direction you take moving forward. MyTopTweet and TwtrLand will provide some free analysis to get you started. Contact Us if you’re looking for a custom database that can track every tweet sent by your accounts and competitors.