The theory behind retweeting someone’s else’s tweets in order to get his or her attention (and perhaps start up a conversation) is basically sound. After all, by voluntarily retweeting someone, you’re tacitly endorsing his or her content and exposing that tweeter to your followers. As long as the tweeter in question regularly checks his or her retweeted posts, you should get noticed for your generosity.
Therein lies the rub. Sometimes, people are just too busy to consistently check their retweets. Or perhaps the tweeter you’re trying to alert simply gets too many retweets to acknowledge or reply to them all.
Conversely, if you rely solely on retweets as a means to get someone’s attention, it may inadvertently have the opposite effect. By analogy, let’s say you’re at a dinner party and you want to get the attention of the guest of honor. If you did nothing but follow the guest around and parrot his or her exact words to your friends, you can pretty much guarantee that the guest is not going to want to have anything to do with you (and you may lose some of your friends in the process too).
Of course, Twitter is not exactly a dinner party but the analogy is apt. If you want to get the attention of someone, try speaking positively about that person to your friends and acquaintances. Better still, think of something you may have in common with that person, approach him or her directly, and use the object of mutual interest as a conversation starter.
That approach might look something like this on Twitter: “Hi @guestofhonor I see that you live in NYC. I used to live three blocks from Rockefeller Center. Have they raised the Christmas tree yet?” Instead of simply retweeting someone else’s words, use your own creativity and personality to get someone’s attention and strike up a conversation. You really have nothing to lose — except maybe your Twitter anonymity!
[Image Credit: il.divino]