06/11/13

Twitter Anatomy: Favorites for Content Marketing

If you’ve ever wondered about the purpose of the star icon on Twitter, you’re not alone. Known as “favorites” in the Twitterverse, this is somewhat an elusive piece of the Twitter puzzle, even for some seasoned Twitter users.  According to Twitter.com, favorites “are most commonly used when users like a Tweet. “ 

Sure, you can use favorites just like a “like” button on Facebook but since Twitter is a community of engagement and sharing, what’s the point in letting someone know that you liked their post? It’s a nice gesture, but it doesn’t do much for your followers.

Instead, here’s a better use for favorites: content curation. Using the favorites can help you assemble content that you’d like to tweet from your own handle or retweet later on in the day. Here’s how you do it:

  1. As you’re reading through your twitter stream and you see articles or tweets that your followers might be interested in, list them as your favorites by starring each tweet. 
  2. Once you’re done, you can filter to your favorites by selecting favorites from your Twitter.com profile page or create a favorites column on Tweetdeck.
  3. From there, I suggest scheduling the tweets to go out throughout the day, either as retweets or as your own tweets with a “ht” or “via” to give credit to the original twitterina

That's all there is to it! 

My favorite (no pun intended) time of day to do this is while I’m commuting to and from work on the metro. It’s a good 20 minutes each way, which allows me to catch up on Twitter and set up some Tweets later on in the day. An extra bonus: using favorites is a huge time-saver when I'm struggling to come up with content for Twitter. 

Do you have another use for favorites on Twitter? Please share! We’d love to learn how you’re using the function.