The world is addicted to social media. It’s safe to assume that if you’re reading this, you probably use Facebook orTwitter—you might be obsessed with social media and post pictures of your to-be-devoured food and your workout schedule on a daily basis or maybe you dabble in it to keep tabs on your loved ones. No matter the level of your involvement, you are familiar with how the services work, but are you doing everything you can do to make your tweets and posts as impactful as possible?

Dan Zarrella, a social media scientist, conducts research designed to examine the mechanics of social media. He has written a book “The Science of Marketing: when to tweet, what to post, how to blog, and other proven strategies”, and supplies the results of his experiments on his blog, available here. Zarrella’s results continually show the popularity and reach of your social media messages relies more on just the content of the message itself. For example, his last blog entry details an experiment that examines the likelihood of your tweet being re-tweeted based on the amount of characters it is—his research shows the ideal amount of characters to be in the 100 to 115 range, with a significant drop-off occurring after 120 characters. What about social calls-to-action on twitter, what words should a user use to get people to retweet his or her message? The answer is “please retweet.” Do hashtags lead to a higher incidence of retweets? What image uploading services lends itself it to a greater number of retweets? How important are hashtags on Instagram? Zarrella’s site has infographics and charts to break all of these concepts down.

Again, social media is ubiquitous so why not learn all the tips and tricks you can to maximize your impact?