How to Get a Top Tweet on Twitter

By Irene A. Blake

With a few changes on Twitter, you might gain recognition as a top tweeter.
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Twitter doesn't manually select top tweets. Additionally, users can’t vote for or suggest tweets. Instead, Twitter utilizes a proprietary algorithm that determines top tweets by a number of factors, such as search term relevance, tweet quality and widespread engagement level. Although there’s no one method that can absolutely guarantee top tweet status, there are several things you can do to improve your chances.

Interact With People

The more you interact with other Twitter users, the more likely they will notice your tweets and re-tweet or favorite them. As this process unfolds, Twitter may recognize your tweets as they become part of a larger conversation. Follow top or expert tweeters in the topic area that interests you. Read their tweets and re-tweet and favorite high quality tweets. Engage these users by acknowledging their points directly within your tweets via “@username” (without quotation marks) mentions and by asking them questions.

Create Interesting Content

Twitter users often re-tweet or favorite tweets about topics they like. To attract users to your tweets, focus your account on a single topic category and then post quality tweets about subjects within the category to show that you're a good source of information or expert about it. Additionally, Twitter users often follow accounts and re-tweet or favorite tweets they consider engaging and valuable. As a result, post up-to-date information about the topic and include links, photos and videos that support or enhance the text in your tweets.

Use Hashtagged Keywords

A hashtag -- “#” -- positioned before a topic keyword or phrase within a tweet helps draw attention to it. When another user searches about a specific topic via Twitter Search without a hashtagged keyword/phrase, the results screen shows all tweets containing the relevant keyword/phrase. Yet, when a user searches with a hashtagged keyword/phrase, Twitter Search narrows the results to only those tweets that contain the hashtagged keyword/phrase. Insert relevant hashtagged keywords or phrases into your tweets to make them more visible in Twitter Search results.

Share Across Services

Another way you can gain followers and increase your chances of having more top tweets is by sharing your tweets, or links to them, on blog sites and other social networks like Blogger, Facebook, LinkedIn, Tumblr and WordPress. Additionally, share your tweets on personal, academic or business websites and in forums or comment areas on topic-related sites. Sharing your tweets across services makes them more visible to Twitter users who follow you but miss some of your tweets, and to users who don't currently follow you.

Remember the Rules

The Twitter Rules (link in Resources) forbids the use of third-party applications and websites designed to increase followers. A sudden increase in followers not gained through normal social interaction on Twitter can result in account suspension. Additionally, suspension can occur if you attempt to increase followers by spamming other users with follow invitations via "@username" mentions or tagging tweets with non-relevant keywords to mislead searchers. Information in this article applies to Twitter as of February 2014.