Most electronics PR professionals understand the important role Twitter plays in their multichannel arsenal but not every tweet gets the audience it deserves. Fewer engineers or electronics experts than you think may see your tweets.

Reply with care.

If an engineering colleague tweets a link to a useful bit of technology news and you hit the reply button on Twitter to thank them and add your own opinion, only your colleague will see that reply. This means you are missing out on an opportunity to promote your technology business and communicate with a large audience who could benefit from your opinion. Twitter treats any tweet that starts with a @ mention, as a reply and it does not therefore show up in any of your followers feeds or your colleague’s followers feeds unless they follow both the sender and the recipient.

Replies are useful as they allow you to thank new followers without cluttering up your friends feeds with loads of welcome messages to strangers.

You can also hold conversations, with close friends, family and colleagues, that are not private but would not interest the majority of your followers. If you need to communicate privately, however, you will need to send a direct message.

It is not enough to be mentioned.

To change a reply into a mention, you need to make sure you do not start your message with an @. You can just pay attention to the order, or use the trick of putting a full stop or comma before you mention the name.

eg.    [email protected]_com New blog post. The in house versus agency PR debate in a digital, social landscape: …

or    New blog post @eeportal_com The in house versus agency PR debate in a digital, social landscape: …

These tweets will be seen by your followers,  regardless of whether or not they follow your engineering colleague, but they will not reach your recipient’s followers until they retweet the message to their own followers from the technology sector. Retweeting is key to getting your company’s message seen by as many relevant industrial, engineering and electronics firms as possible.

For a visual guide to who sees your tweets, take a look at this infographic. Just click to enlarge.

Infographic : Who sees your tweets