Topical tweeting can garner mainstream media exposure

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, October 5, 2017
I'm very active on Twitter and have several accounts in different niches. One of these is current affairs and politics. I've learned more about building a large, engaged following on social media from this particular account than any of the others, to be honest.

This is a passionate, engaged niche. There are numerous mainstream media journos on it. And no wonder. It's a great way to keep up to speed on breaking stories ... And with so many "punters" on the site tweeting their views of political developments, etc, it's also a brilliant way to get instant, relevant content with which to embellish stories.

Sometimes the tweets on their own are the story. MSM reporters will often collate a dozen or so popular tweets on some issue or development, throw in a bit of text of their own, and that's their complete article!

This does tend to happen more in the news and current affairs niche than others, sure. But it still occurs across the board. Sport, entertainment, hospitality, business, you name it ...

So, if you have something to promote you should tweet a lot about subjects that interest you, particularly when they are in the news. You're sure to get included in these roundups now and then.
The benefits tend not to be direct because the tweets are often not embedded (therefore clickable) in articles. Still, the mentions certainly help lift your profile, since many thousands of people learn about you for the first time and will either look for you on Twitter, or be more likely to follow you as they encounter you on the site.

There's another way that you can get mainstream media exposure through Twitter, and that's via interviews and debates. I experienced this recently.

As I'm sure you're aware the Captain Cook statue in Sydney's Hyde Park was vandalized. I tweeted quite a bit about this, sharing a video I'd made of the graffiti.

A producer from BBC World Service found my account this way, and asked me to be part of a quick debate on the issue.

It was fun to do. And it all happened so quickly.

I basically got home late one evening logged in and saw the request as a reply. Then I followed him back so we could "private message" each other. I sent him my mobile number and he called me very soon after.

A few minutes after that I was arguing about the issue with someone I'd never heard of and didn't know anything about!

It was a very good learning experience apart from anything else. And it definitely helped lift my profile as a blogger. I noticed a surge in search engine traffic from the United Kingdom in particular.

Also, just having it up there online can help me in future if I get similar requests. MSM producers can see where I'm coming from and know that I'll be competent and articulate in an interview or debate in the future.

Obviously getting this kind of MSM exposure is more likely in a niche like politics because it's such a big, active and "hungry" niche. But the same principles apply to all others.

Journos in all fields are constantly on the lookout for knowledgeable, opinionated people to offer "their two cents" on the subject they're writing and talking about. Twitter is perhaps they're favourite way of finding them. So, merely by being active on the site your odds of getting this kind of exposure go way up. That's why I would recommend this tactic to anyone with something to promote, no matter what field they're in.

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