If you’re using social media for your business good for you! Hopefully you’re paying attention to which messages you publish to social networks like Facebook and Twitter get the best response. But it’s important to understand what messages you publish are most interesting to your fans.

No matter which social network you use, it’s crucial to grab your reader’s attention with a compelling hook. And your introductory message can be the difference between your content being shared or completely ignored so you need to get their attention with a “teaser.”

I took a look at a recent activity report for the VerticalResponse email marketing Twitter account, @vr4smallbiz, to see what takeaways we might be able to give you about our own teasers. Looking at the top five most clicked links over a two-week period in March, I saw some interesting themes emerge that can be applied to how you might use social media. Check them out:

1. How-To

Using the words “how to” clearly communicates to the reader that they will be getting information that’s useful to them and actionable.


2. Numbers/Lists

People love numbered lists. By including a list in your teaser, your reader knows exactly what to expect when clicking through.

3. Rewards/Offers/Exclusives

Using “Top Lists Of…” will always be successful whether it’s informational or a list of “Top Products Purchased” this week. This tweet promoting VerticalResponse’s free downloadable guides has continued to be one of our most clicked through teasers nearly a month after posting.

4. News/Announcements

Have some exciting news about your company or industry? Make sure to use it in your teaser. You might be surprised how many people follow you on social networks for access to the latest information about your brand or business.

5. Charlie Sheen (or any topical reference)

Well okay, not just Charlie Sheen, but you can go ahead and call it the “Sheen Rule of Social Teasers”. Using humor, drama, and timely topical references do a great job of commanding attention. Just be careful with this one and make sure that it does somehow tie back to the content you’re sharing…you don’t want to make your fans feel like they’ve been conned. The Sheen Rule of Teasers reminds us that it’s perfectly okay, even encouraged, to have a little fun with your social teasers. Social media is the perfect place to get your personality out there.


You may have noticed that social teasers have a lot in common with the subject lines you craft for your email marketing campaigns. In fact, many of the practices that we recommend for writing email subject lines can be applied here as well. Check out our 50 All-Time Great Retail Subject Lines for some ideas. Also, if you’re not using the VR Social Sharing feature to post your newsletters to Facebook and Twitter, you might want to revisit our blog post about how best to craft your subject lines for a social audience.

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