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TweetReach Tip: Excluding tweets from your search

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You can exclude certain tweets from your results by using the minus (“-”) operator in your TweetReach search. You can exclude tweets that include certain keywords or tweets that mention a certain account. For example:

 Sandwiches -ham 

or

#swag -justinbieber

The second example is a good one to use if you find a spammer or someone whose tweets you really don’t want to include in your reports.

Note that there should not be a space between the minus and the word you’re excluding.  If you’d like to exclude a two word phrase, wrap them in quotation marks, like this:

#swag -”justin bieber”

Written by Sarah

November 21st, 2013 at 9:08 am

In case of emergency: Airlines and crisis communication on Twitter

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What airlines should look for on Twitter and what to measure, before, during, and after a crisis

Social media is both a blessing and a curse in a time of crisis. While companies are able to rapidly disseminate information, share updates, and directly interact with the public in real time, misinformation can also spread like crazy on platforms like Twitter.

For something as high stakes as air travel, it’s important for airlines and travel companies to have a plan in place should a crisis arise, particularly during the stressful holiday travel season. We have some advice for creating just such a plan, or reassessing it if you already have one.

Image courtesy NYPL Digital Galleries

What to look for on Twitter during a crisis

First, you need to set up a monitoring plan for Twitter. Exactly what you’re looking for will depend on the nature of the crisis you’re dealing with and your communication goals around each type of crisis.

In case of common crisis

For flight delays and stranded, angry customers, for example, you’ll definitely want to focus on catching every mention of your brand on Twitter and doing everything you possibly can to make affected customers feel listened to and understood. If possible, give your customer service representatives on Twitter the power to offer reconciliations: everything from drink tickets, to discounts on future flights, full or partial refunds; even free tickets for a future flight if the situation is bad enough.

This is vital for turning an angry person who swears they will never fly with you again- whether the circumstances of the situation were under your control or not- and someone who will brag about your customer service on the same forum they just used to share their unhappiness, while remaining a customer.

In case of not-so-common crisis

If the situation is more serious- like the recent shooting that happened at Los Angeles International Airport, or a natural disaster like an earthquake- you don’t have to bother to look for misinformation; it will already be out there. Use Twitter as a way to let everyone know you’re aware of the situation, the safety of your employees and passengers, and any updates you can make on the situation, waiting as long as possible to confirm new information before you send it out while still making any corrections as necessary.

In both cases- and the rest of the time, as a general rule of thumb- you should be monitoring not only direct replies to your brand’s handle on Twitter, but also mentions of your company name in any variety of spelling imaginable, any well-known nicknames your brand has (official or not), and the airports you operate from. Depending on your resources, you might want to include the names of prominent employees, such as founders, board members and c-level executives. Something like our TweetReach Pro Trackers will allow you to do this. (We’ll talk more about what to measure in the next section.)

Go the extra mile

Monitoring mentions of the airports you operate from will be vital should a tragic incident such as the LAX shooting occur again, and the rest of the time it will give you an advantage in listening to and addressing problems you might not have caught otherwise. Is a passenger stranded, and you have room on a flight? Even if they weren’t booked on your airline, you’ve probably just won a new loyal customer. If you make someone’s day, you’ve reversed their story of a bad trip gone awry and be more likely to be the first brand on their mind the next time they travel.

What to measure on Twitter in times of crisis, and after

Now that you know what to look for, you need to have a plan in place for how to measure it. What, exactly, should you be measuring on Twitter as a crisis unfolds?

Before; or what you should have set up right now

Ideally you will already have Trackers set up to capture what we mentioned above- tweets directly to your official handle, mentions of your brand in any variety of spelling imaginable, any well-known nicknames your brand has (official or not), and the airports you operate from. If you’re not already doing that, now is the time to implement Trackers or take frequent snapshots (using something like our aptly named snapshot reports) around those terms once a situation arises and begins to unfold.

During a crisis

Often during a crisis situation, a hashtag will be born organically. If you’re being proactive about communicating via Twitter, however, don’t hesitate to create one of your own and immediately set up a Tracker to measure it, or take continual snapshots of the situation. If another hashtag emerges organically, use that one in your messaging as well and be sure you’re tracking both.

After a crisis

If everything flies by too quickly and you’re a small enough team not to have time to set up Trackers or take frequent enough snapshots of the situation, a historical option to capture the entire incident is available. This can also be used to fill in any noticeable gaps in your data once you’ve begun to look through everything you’ve gathered.

In the aftermath of the event, you might also want to track a specific news story (using specific key words from the title if it’s unique enough not to return a lot of noise, or you can track via a specific URL) that went around if it directly involved comments from your brand, or got a lot of circulation with commentary from people passing it around. This will give you a much more accurate read on the sentiment around your crisis messaging, and let you see any missed opportunities as well as highlight every win.

Go the extra mile

Once you have all of this data and you can clearly see how the situation unfolded and evaluate the strength of your response, take it a step further: What can you plan better next time, with this experience? What did you and your team do really well, that you should be sure to praise and also pass on as protocol to new team members? This knowledge can be distilled and turned into training and on-boarding materials for any new communications employees in the future.

If you’re not an airline a lot of these tactics still apply to you; if you’re a hotel, for example, you can offer to put up stranded travelers or victims of a natural disaster or other tragedy. Car rental companies and car sharing services can work out deals to get stranded people home if they don’t have far to go. Tour companies can even offer to keep stranded passengers entertained with local sites while they’re waiting for delayed travel to get sorted out.

The takeaway

The bottom line is to listen and step in where you’re needed, even if you’re not expected to.

Written by Sarah

November 19th, 2013 at 9:18 am

TweetReach Tip: Searching for a specific tweet

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Say you want to search for a specific tweet in a snapshot report, like this one from our Twitter timeline:

TR Tweet

Be sure to search for the text of the tweet, rather than the tweet’s unique URL. Try searching for the first part of the tweet text. Keep it short – under 60 characters – and wrap it in quotations marks in order to catch any and all retweets. Like this:

“Vanity metrics- like FB Likes- have their uses”

Written by Sarah

November 14th, 2013 at 2:29 pm

TweetReach Tip: Searching for URLs

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If you want to follow a piece of news through Twitter, try searching for the article’s URL instead of its title or a set of keywords. In TweetReach snapshot reports, we can search for a root URL, so even if a link is shrunk into a t.co, bit.ly or other shortener, we’ll pick it up.

Some more tips to get the results you’re looking for:

  • Exclude the http:// or www. They don’t impact your search and lengthen your search query. And depending on the URL shortener, might not even be included in the link.
  • Keep queries at about 60 characters or under. If you have a long URL, consider searching for the second half – the unique part – of the URL to save space.

Want to see an example? Say you want to follow this New York Times article Sushi’s New Vanguard and watch how it spreads through Twitter. In your TweetReach search, you can leave out the http:// and www. portions of the URL. Search just for this:

nytimes.com/2013/10/30/dining/sushis-new-vanguard.html

That will result in this snapshot report. Note how it includes tweets that use nyti.ms shortened URLs, among others.

Have any questions about your URL? Just ask us!

Written by Sarah

November 5th, 2013 at 10:50 am

2 reasons why the travel industry should be measuring share of voice

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How much of what you say on behalf of your travel brand is being heard, compared to that of your competitors? How much are your customers saying about you, compared to your competitors? How much are they saying to you that goes unheard? Better known as your share of voice, the size of your brand’s chunk of the travel conversation is vital to how many customers- and potential customers- know what you’re up to. If you’re the airline 60% of people are talking about for holiday travel, for example, there’s a better chance you’ll come to mind over a competitor when someone is looking to book a trip home. Better yet, if you’re the brand with a story they connect to and you cost about the same as the competition? They’ll feel good about going with you. We’ll tell you how to get there.

After all, earning a reputation as knowledgeable, responsive, and trustworthy is important regardless of industry, but especially important in one that is both necessary (the Oregon Trail is no longer an option home for the holidays) and flush with competition, like the travel industry.

People can look forward to a carefully planned vacation for months, even years, and when they choose companies to control the fate of their experience, they do not do so lightly, making it critical for every travel company to know how much of the conversation they own in the space and what exactly it is that is being said about them vs. the competition.

1. You can’t fix a problem you don’t know about.

The conversation about your brand is already happening, and you need to be a part of it. Part of your share of voice is what people are saying about you and to you; you only control the messages you put out. Although it’s impossible to make everyone happy all of the time, you should strive to make as many people happy as possible most of the time. If you’re not listening, you can’t address the problems and complaints of your customers– and that will put off any potential customers. But if you fix a bad experience for someone, you could end up with a customer for life, and push someone who’s on the fence about your company into being a customer.

Takeaway 1: Your customers will tell you what they want. Be responsive and helpful as you monitor the conversation happening about you. Answer questions, answer complaints, acknowledge compliments (favoriting tweets is a good tactic here). People like to share good experiences (and especially the bad!) so work to make as many good experiences happen as possible. Even just responding that you’re aware of an issue and saying you’ll work on it can make a huge difference; you don’t appear deaf and indifferent. Many customers just want to know that they’re being heard.

But if you can, comp a bad experience, or even take things a step further and reach out to someone whose travel plans have fallen through, offering to help them. Enable your customer service representatives to take these actions without having to go through an endless bureaucratic chain. A happy customer will tell their friends and family if you save their holiday– and that’s a new group of customers who will think of you first, instead of the competition, for their next trip.

2. Tell your story, lend your expertise.

You do get to control your portion of the message going out into the conversation, so make it count. A good story is intriguing so be sure to tell yours. Do you have one about how the company came to be and how that influences your values? Or how the company worked through growing pains early or late in its inception? Tell that story and then share what you’ve learned from it; how it is has made you a better company with more to bring to the table for your customers. Then, most importantly, execute those values where your customers can see it happening: everywhere you have a social presence.

Takeaway 2: Part of the battle is coming to mind when people think about travel. If you’re already doing all you can to respond and be helpful in a public customer service capacity, on social media and elsewhere, the only share of the conversation left to you is the message you’re sending out. If there’s a personal story you can tell about your brand- faces of employees or customers and either of their stories- customers and potential customers will relate to that over just seeing your logo. Be the brand with the engaging story, so they’ll pass over the competition’s logo and static mascot for you.

The final takeaway

A golden rule of social media is to listen first, then talk. Evaluating your share of voice is no different. Now that you know why it’s important and have some takeaways to start with, you can work toward increasing it.

Written by Sarah

October 31st, 2013 at 12:24 pm

Posted in Guides

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Twitter Tip: Turn off mobile alerts at bedtime

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If you’ve got Twitter setup to be able to receive notifications and send tweets and more from your phone, you can also turn off notifications for certain periods of time- such as when you’re sleeping- if you don’t want to be woken up by an errant tweet in the middle of the night.

Under the “Mobile” tab in your left-hand menu, scroll down to find this:

Mobile Alerts TR Tip

 

Alternatively if you’re running a campaign, or taking your turn on customer service duty, you can uncheck the box and be able to respond in a timely manner.

Written by Sarah

October 29th, 2013 at 11:49 am

TweetReach Tip: Searching for more than one term in a snapshot report

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If you want to run a TweetReach snapshot report for more than one term, be sure to remember the magic of the “OR” operator. You can search for any two or three queries by combining them together with OR. Example:

term1 OR term2 – search for tweets containing either term1 or term2 (e.g. analytics OR metrics)

A few things to keep in mind to get the best results possible:

  •  Keep queries around 50-60 characters, 100 max.
  • If searching for two word phrases, use quote marks or you might not get the results you’re looking for. Example: “pumpkin ale” OR #manafromthegourd

Written by Sarah

October 24th, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Twitter Tip: Emergency alerts

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A Twitter Quick Tip. 

Twitter now allows you to enable emergency alerts from certain participating organizations. These alerts are meant to complement, not replace, traditional emergency alerts and you can opt in or out at any point.

Red Cross Emergency Alerts

You can find the alerts page for each organization by adding /alerts to the end of their Twitter URL; for example https://twitter.com/redcross/alerts which you can see the page for above. It will prompt you to add a mobile phone to your account if you haven’t done so already.

Want more tips? Click here

Written by Sarah

October 23rd, 2013 at 10:33 am

The top travel resources on Twitter: Accounts to follow and chats to attend

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Whether you travel for business or pleasure, you want the best information possible to plan your trip. So where do you get it?

Twitter has a host of accounts that offer up travel advice, suggestions and more, from those on a budget to those who want the best possible luxury accommodations. Below we’ve rounded up resources so you don’t have to take the time to do the research yourself.

Suggested travel accounts to follow (hat tip to Mashable for a lot of these):

  • Jeannie Mark, aka @nomadicchick, is a freelance travel writer and blogger who shares advice on different destinations she’s found herself visiting through her wanderlust 

  • Wonder what things are like from a flight attendant’s point of view? Look no further than @Heather_Poole.

  • Independent travelers (@TravelEditor) share travel tips and travel news from the editors of IndependentTraveler.com

  • Keith Jenkins (@velvetescape) will keep you up to date on the luxury side of travel

  • Melanie Nay of @chic_travel also shares luxury lifestyles and travel experiences through her account.

  • Stacy Small, better known as @elitetravelgal, rounds out your high-end travel as a luxury travel planner

  • On the other end of the spectrum is @BudgetTravel, working to make traveling accessible to all

  • @FlightView brings you real-time flight information, which can be a lifesaver

  • Kristin Luna (@lunaticatlarge) is a guidebook author for Frommer’s; look to her account for travel experiences mixed in with her other interests and pursuits

  • Brendan van Son (@Brendanvanson) is a travel writer and photographer, and will take you with him on his non-stop adventures

  • For pictures in motion, look to travel writer and videographer Robert Reid (@reidontravel), who has written for a number of large travel publications

  • If you want more intensity in your travel, check out @Intrepid_Travel 

  • Sustainability and travel don’t have to be mutually exclusive, as @STI_travel tweets

  • Chris Christensen, the @AmateurTraveler, brings you an online travel show that highlights not only destinations, but the best ways to travel as well

If you want more than just reading the advice and resources provided by travel experts with occasional interaction, check out some tweet chats! Tweet chats give you the ability to weigh in with your own opinions and experiences, as well as ask questions of hosts, guests, and your fellow chatters. You can read through a past chat by looking at the hashtag for it, or feel free to introduce yourself and jump right in on your first one. Tweet chats are meant to be open, friendly and interactive. (Read more about how to get the most out of a tweet chat as a participant here.)

Try these out (hat tip to Travel Bites for these recommendations):

Written by Sarah

October 17th, 2013 at 11:27 am

Posted in Guides

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TweetReach Tip: Measuring the results of a Twitter contest

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If you’re running a contest and using TweetReach to track it, you’ll want to take a look at this post so you don’t miss any of the tweets you want to capture. For best results, we have a few suggestions. Keep your original tweet short (120 characters or less) and unique, and use hashtags and a unique URL to distinguish yourself from other contests (a generic term like “RT for a chance to win an iPad” gets tweeted 40 times a minute).

Now let’s look at specifics, depending on whether you’re measuring results after the fact with a snapshot report or setting up a Tracker to monitor tweets in real-time through your TweetReach Pro subscription.

TweetReach Snapshot Report

There are a few ways to search for contest tweets in a snapshot report. Remember that a snapshot report will look back at up to 1500 recently posted tweets from the past few days, so you can run a snapshot after a contest ends if only ran for a few days and had fewer then 1500 tweets.

1. Don’t search for the entire text of a tweet; search for the first 50-60 characters of your tweet, wrapped in quotation marks. Remember that retweets add characters to the front of your tweet. “jimmyjohn: you so silly Sandwich Place! RT @sandwichartiste: RT if you love meatball subs! #subs4life” is longer than “@sandwichartiste: RT if you love meatball subs! #subs4life”. Make sure that a user adding a note before the text of their retweet won’t push any terms you are searching for beyond the 140 character limit.

2. Use an original hashtag or URL in your contest tweet, and search for all retweets that contain “RT” and your hashtag or URL. (Put exactly RT #subs4life or RT http://bit.ly/12aoGYA in the TweetReach search bar for your snapshot report.) 

TweetReach Pro Tracker

If you expect significant participation or want to run your contest for more than one week, set up a Tracker in advance. Trackers can monitor unlimited tweets for unlimited time; you just need to set them up before your tweets start going out. The same rules apply to a Tracker, but you can (and should) set up a Tracker to search for your contest tweet in both ways.

Search for both the first 50 characters of the tweet, but also any identifying URLs or hashtags you’re using. A Tracker can include up to 15 different queries, so you can enter in several different combinations to make sure you’re getting exactly the tweets you’re looking for.


TR Tip Contest Tracker Queries

 

Written by Sarah

October 16th, 2013 at 10:55 am