Is Twitter part of your social media marketing? or You are exploring if Twitter can be used for marketing your business? With growing interest in Social media among people, It’s time that you take a fresh look at “Twitter for business”.
Those who want to explore twitter for their business purposes, here is, Some user statistics:
(As of July 2014).
Active Monthly users – 255 Million
Tweets sent per day – 500 Million
Twitter users on Mobile – 78%
Twitter users outside US – 77%
For those, who are ignorant about twitter, Let me tell you that-Twitter is a short messaging services (140 characters), through which you can send messages (tweets) to people who subscribe to you- called as Followers.
You can also include link of a webpage, blog, PDF or Video in a tweet which makes the message more vibrant.
Uniqueness in Twitter
Twitter is the most popular micro blogging site. Some of the Other micro blogging sites include- Tumblr, Friendfeed etc
All social media sites have many things in common but what differentiates Twitter from the rest is-
- Tweets reach followers
Every tweet arrives at each follower’s feed, Unlike in Facebook, where ‘Edgerank‘ controls who sees what in his newsfeed?
- Commentary around image
Twitter allows you to share commentary with photographs, nearest close is Pinterest but Twitter is still easier.
- Strangers as Followers
Twitter allows strangers to follow you and interact with you, which is not the case with the other social media sites including Facebook, Linkedin. For business, Brands can easily target their potential customers.
#(symbol) called hashtag is used in many social media sites but is most popular only among twitter users. It allows real time discussions and conversations on a topic. Lot of twitter users often question- Are hashtags really useful? You may read our blog to find out the caution you need to apply before using a new hashtag.
How you can use Twitter for business
Showcase your business
Your Twitter account and profile are the starting point for showcasing your business to Twitter users and to share your business story with the community.
Select Twitter handle
Username in Twitter is called ‘handle’. It needs to be consistent with your otherwise online presence. Example– For blog url technofare.com if twitter handle @Technofare is not available, then give priority for user names like @technofareblog, rather than exploring @technofare123.
For some businesses, which go by individual’s name – like film actors, astrologers etc, it is more suitable to go with twitter handle that represents their name rather than their business name. Profile picture should be either your company logo or in case of individual a clear headshot photo.
For small businesses, a way to add personal touch to the profile is by using the business name for account creation and picture of the entrepreneur for profile.
In Twitter, your profile header appears at the top of your profile page same as in case of Facebok and gives enough visibility to tell your business story through image and few words.
Look for Business-Specific Tweets
There is plenty of information flowing around in form of tweets. Skill lies in identifying the ones that belong to your niche. Once those conversations are identified, you can start participating and adding value to the discussions. You may explore #SMB or #Smallbiz for some bright ideas and current news for small businesses. If you have tried twitter chat and failed to gather participation, Follow these tips for better twitter chat.
Well, If you want to go for more specific conversations and have already tried Twitter search panel before and felt that the results were generic, You should try twitter advanced search., This allows you to exclude certain words from results and also do expression based filtering.
A good combination of search words can show you results of people who are trying to get your attention or people talking to your competitors about their services. You can enter the advanced search words manually and get specific results or use Twilert services to get summary of alerts each time someone has spoken about your search terms. You can check an article by social media examiner for more detail on how to do advanced search with examples.
To add on, the advanced search queries allows you to search as per your Geographic business needs. Local business owners can select tweet area to look out for tweets from their area of operation which helps building relevance when using search operators to hit prospect business leads.
You may have a great profile, beautiful cover photo and a well written bio but if you don’t tweet often it is no good. To boost your profile on search engine optimization and to be found on key words or hashtags you need to be present actively in the community and participating in discussions. Since your bio is open to public, tweeting often with your keywords will help Google to index content that is relevant to your business.
Find out influencers
There are people from every niche who are influencing the twitter community. Isn’t it a great idea to follow such people and build relations rather than just following anyone? An obvious question is “how do I find influencers from my industry?”.
Use any of the following tools:-
- This is my all time favorite tool, it takes only a few seconds to identify people in your niche.
- Finding influencers in twitter and putting them in easy list format has been explained well in an
- by postplanner.
- Many people make a decent beginning to follow influencers and then end up leaving it there, which serves no good for you or your business.
- Use @mention
- This is looked upon with care by all influencers, you mention them, giving it a beginning of your conversation.
- Retweet their updates
- Great way to stay on influencer’s radar.
- Share their blog posts – Everyone loves to see who is sharing his/her blog post, important to note here is @mention – when you do it, otherwise it will just remain as a tweet and they will not even come to know of it.
- Link to their blog posts
- Write a content that supports influencer’s content on his blog post and share a link. Its important that you are careful on using the anchor text to be “non money’ and inform the person that you have shared the link. If the link generates traffic, then they will come to know of it through referrals in analytics.
Important thing here is to tell the person that you have shared the link and ask him to share your link so that he gets referral traffic.
Value your followers
This may sound obvious but many a times, we end up overdoing the sales pitch, thinking them to be our ready customers. People follow you to learn more about your business, keep feeding them with relevant information and restrict the sales pitch to 20% of so. Truth to acknowledge is that no one is following you or your business because he wants to buy your product.
Regular feeding with relevant and engaging information can help them see your tweets and take action on them in terms of re-tweeting or marking them as favorite.
By implementing the strategies mentioned above, you will get good insights on using Twitter to market your business. Besides this, the thumb rule to social media marketing is that there are no rules to the game, Principles that apply to one industry may not exactly apply to another. Also same techniques used at two different times may not produce same results.
Bottomline – Take these as guidelines to start promoting your business on Twitter and make your own success list and evaluate it after some time to cope up with the ever changing business dynamics of social media marketing.