Cycling evergreen content can soon get your Twitter account disabled.
Twitter have recently released information on an update to the platform which will mean the end of scheduling recycled Tweets. Twitter’s latest update means that if you’re using tools such as RecurPost, Edgar, Hootsuite, Buffer, SmarterQueue, or even if you have your own content calendar and recycle your evergreen content yourself, then you need to change your strategy before 23rd March 2018.
Twitter’s announcement said that they will no longer allow you to:
“simultaneously post identical or substantially similar content to multiple accounts”
“use any form of automation (including scheduling) to post identical or substantially similar content”
These comments suggest that evergreen content is dead, however don’t give up on it just yet. The tools that sprung up to help us recycle our content have had to make quick changes and have done so.
- Hootsuite have said that they’re making changes to their product in order to keep users within Twitter’s guidelines.
- RecurPost are adding a feature that allows you to create multiple variations of the same Tweet.
- Edgar will no longer allow a single social update to be associated with more than one Twitter account and are working on a way to add Tweets to your library of status updates, so you can easily upload lots of content all at once.
- SmarterQueue will be checking each tweet before it is published, to make sure it isn’t a duplicate of a tweet that has already gone out on another of your Twitter profiles within your SmarterQueue account. If it is a duplicate, they will retweet the original post.
Why is Twitter making these changes?
For some people, it’s useful to be able to share the same Tweet to multiple accounts – for example, Norfolk Constabulary shared the Tweet below to both the @NorfolkPolice and the @KingsLynnPolice account at the same time.
However, some people have abused this ability, in order to promote something on Twitter by creating multiple fake accounts and Tweeting the same message from each in one go. Imagine, for example, hundreds of fake accounts in Norfolk all tweeting using the same hashtag and fooling Twitter into promoting that hashtag in your trending topics locally. When one person or group is able to send the same message to multiple accounts all at once, it is easy to do. Twitter are putting an end to this.
Twitter said: “To be clear: Twitter prohibits any attempt to use automation for the purposes of posting or disseminating spam, and such behavior may result in enforcement action”.
So what should I do right now to ensure I’m compliant?
Firstly, don’t go deleting all of your content! Most platforms allow you to ‘pause’ the cycled content so that it will not be published, giving you time to make changes as necessary.
Then, look at your evergreen content and create multiple variations of each Tweet. This might even prove to be useful – have you edited your evergreen content since Twitter increased the character count to 280? I haven’t!
If you can’t create a variation for whatever reason, Twitter allows you to Retweet your own Tweets – make use of that function.
What can I do going forward to stay within Twitter’s guidelines?
You could consider going totally un-automated. A big step, granted, but it’ll give you a chance to focus on genuine conversation. Perhaps you could concentrate on taking part in Twitter chats such as #NorfolkHour, hosted by @IceniMagazine? You’ll be publishing fewer posts, but what you do post will be of quality and focussed on getting people to engage.
Create multiple variations of Tweets that link to your new blog posts, newsletters, articles, etc. Twitter are not saying that you cannot still promote the same link as part of the same campaign, you just need to vary the content of each Tweet.
Also, make use of Twitter’s Media Studio. By visiting studio.twitter.com, you’ll see all of the media you’ve ever Tweeted. Find the appropriate image and click on the ‘Tweet’ icon. You can then compose a new Tweet, recycling the same great image / video / gif etc. and even schedule this to go out at a later date / time.
What do you think about Twitter’s update?
Facebook recently updated their algorithm, shifting the focus on to towards “meaningful engagement”, and it would seem that Twitter would like to do similar, keeping people active on their platform. See this change as an opportunity – Twitter are weeding out the bots producing spammy Tweets, but also the people who cannot be bothered to put the effort in. If there is less noise on Twitter, there’s less for you to compete against!
Do you think it’ll make Twitter a better place? Or do you think it’s just going to make marketing your business even harder? Let us know…