Twitter Wars: The Favorite vs. the Retweet

By Matt Swenson, October 23, 2015

To favorite or retweet? That is the never-ending question when it comes to Twitter. Is one better than the other? The answer is it depends, says Lee Odden, CEO of Minneapolis-based digital marketing agency TopRank Online Marketing, who speaks at conferences about social media strategy. Here’s his breakdown:

Favorite

“Favoriting a tweet is like a passing high five,” says Odden, who draws the comparison to clicking “like” on a Facebook post. Want to say thanks for being mentioned in a post? Clicking that gold star is how you do it. It doesn’t do much to promote the tweet for the person who posted it, but it does serve as an endorsement—something a retweet does not.

Retweet

“This is awesome stuff my Tweeple; you have to see this!” Welcome to the mindset of retweeting, says Odden, who says there is at least one drawback to retweeting: You can come across as too lazy to offer commentary on an interesting story if it’s the only way you’re interacting with the tweet. It’s also worth noting that many people state in their profiles that retweeting should not be considered an endorsement, therefore making the action ambiguous at times. But you are sharing the story with all of your followers, and that’s a big gesture.

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