Recently a study wasrealized by Microsoft and Carnegie Mellon University on users’perceptions of tweet credibility (microblogging and Twitter)*. The report indicates important steps to increase reputation trustworthy and credibility on Twitter, strategies that tweet authors can use to enhance their credibility with their actual and future readers.
Twitter users have two different approaches to have a piece of information: follow another user they consider interesting for the content he/she produces or search into the Twitter search engine the info they are looking for. The fact that 1.6 billion of queries are generated on Twitter Search Engine (ref. Siegler, M.G. At 1.6 Billion Queries Per Day, Twitter Finally Aims To Make Search Personally Relevant. TechCrunch, June 1, 2011) is a clear evidence that both approaches are significant.
The survey reveals the sources Twitter users adopt to have an info.
- Reading tweets from users they followed
- Conducting searches on search.twitter.com (84%)
- Clicking trending topics on the Twitter homepage (84%)
- Searching for tweets using Bing’s and Google’s social search functionality (72%)
- Encountering tweets mixed into the results of general Web searches (81%)
The survey makes evidence that the ability of Twitter users to determine reputation, trustworthy and credibility is largely limited to features visible at-a-glance:
- user picture
- user name
- tweet content
The credibility factors are here reported (max impact 05.00):
|author is someone you’ve heard of||04.33|
|contains URL you clicked thru to||04.33|
|account has verification seal||04.32|
|author often tweets on topic||04.14|
|many tweets w/ similar content||04.11|
|personal photo as user image||04.10|
|author often mentioned/retweeted||04.09|
|is a RT from someone you trust||04.08|
|username is related to topic||04.07|
|author location near topic||04.07|
|author bio suggests topic expertise||04.06|
|is a retweet||04.06|
|author has many followers||04.05|
|verified author topic expertise||04.04|
|is a reply||04.01|
|author is someone you follow||04.00|
|near top of search result list||03.58|
|contains complete URL||03.57|
|author tweets frequently||03.52|
|contains a URL||03.50|
|author location near you||03.43|
|customized Twitter homepage||03.41|
|contains shortened URL||03.39|
|logo as user image||03.37|
|author is following many users||03.30|
|default user image||03.27|
|cartoon/avatar as user image||03.22|
The survey shows that the credibility of an author on a given topic is determined by such factors as the Twitter homepage bio, history of on-topic tweeting, pages outside of Twitter, or the location relevant to the topic of the tweet.
The author reputation, on the other side, seems to be determined by the number of followers the User has, the number of retweets he/she receives, and the mentions he/she has about and if the author has an official Twitter account verification seal.
The author credibility is also greatly influenced by his/her picture. The pictures of males and females are preferred to the default avatar (the Twitter egg). The reason is simple. Default avatars may easily represent unreal users.
The credibility of the content seems to be granted by the following factors:
- URL leading to a high-quality site
- Presence of other tweets conveying similar information
- The tweet is a retweet
Considering the survey of Microsoft, the steps to have a good reputation, trustworthy and credibility are determined.
- Update your profile with a complete biography on the topics you are going to tweet.
- Upload your personal image (if you are not a company).
- Don’t follow the planet, is not credible that you can follow 20,000 users.
- Tweet regularly.
- Try to engage the Community, more followers = more trustworthy.
- Tweet URLs if possible.
- Tweet using hashtag.
Simple or not ? Anyway this is the way to increase reputation trustworthy and credibility on Twitter, the path to the success !
Happy tweet guys and girls !
The original doc is available there: