One of the problems with using social media to promote our articles is that most of us do not command the kind of authority that the top notch bloggers in our niche claim. A recent case at hand was when Google Wave was launched in public beta. We had several hundreds of blogs writing on the same subject, yet it was only the most popular blogs that garnered all the attention on the social media.
The problem here is a lack of perspective. In this particular case, most bloggers merely parrotted the same news that readers already knew, thus losing out in the social media traffic race. When the same news is presented with a different perspective, it is received much better. So here are two tips that you can make use of while writing on a topic that is likely to be on something written everywhere else and still be seen as unique.
One of the easiest ways to capture attention is to be counter-intuitive in your posts. Let us take the example of ‘Google wave invites’ again. On that particular day, a Twitter search for Google Wave will show most twitterers saying one of these : “Google wave releases 100,000 invites” or “Need a Google wave invite”. This gives you the general mood of the ‘herd’. An article at this point about ‘Why it is better not to get a Google wave immediately’ or ‘Why a Google wave invite now makes no sense’ will surely catch your audience off-guard and it is likely to be shared more on social media.
If you have not already known, Tweetmeme is like a Digg for tweets and lists links that are making the maximum wave on Twitter. While the homepage (or the category page) of Tweetmeme can give you the currently popular stories, what you should be interested is the search option. As you might know ‘How-to’ articles are among the most popular articles and tend to get shared pretty quickly. Search for “How to” followed by the topic you wish to cover. In the example mentioned above ‘How to Google wave’ will give you lesser known website links that have been covering an interesting perspective. You may write on a similar subject or you may use the titles to form your own clever how-to titles. While the same is possible with Google Blogsearch as well, in my experience, TweetMeme tends to be less spammy and more relevant to the keywords I look for.
The above two are just among the hundreds of different ways to use Twitter to find interesting topics for you to write on. However, as a means to providing a perspective to what you write, the above two tools can go a long way in helping you write articles that can be social media friendly.