Automatic and Manual retweets on Twitter: The differences

Jillian emailed me with an issue she had after attending my Introduction to Twitter workshop the other week:

If I press the retweet button I can’t edit anything so presumably I have to copy and paste it into another tweet.  But then the link doesn’t go with it.  for instance I wanted to retweet your fibre optics post and say where does she keep the rechargeable batteries, but the link doesn’t go over and so when I go back into your tweet to pick up the link the RT has gone too!  Spend far more than half hour each day on this as I go all round the houses. 

Twitter uses the automatic retweet button for its own analytics. It can tell how many times a Tweet has been rebroadcast

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Clicking on the Retweet link brings up a dialogue box.  you can not edit the link, but reproduce it entirely.

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If the automatic Retweet button is used, then Twitter can tell exactly how many times this has been retweeted.  See the example below which must have appealed to a lot of people as it has been retweeted 11,659 times so far:

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It is much easier to edit retweets if you use one of Twitters clients.  Here’s an example of using the edit and retweet button on Tweetdeck

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Choosing ‘Edit then Retweet’ appends RT to the start of the tweet.

Other clients use “Quote tweet” as a way of copying the original tweet into a new tweet window, allowing you to edit the tweet and credit the originator of the tweet..

Eileen is a social business strategist, ZDNet columnist and author of Working The Crowd: Social Media Marketing for Business. Contact her to find out how she can help your business extend its reach.