Twitter marketing: for your business


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Twitter can be about more than just chatting to your friends but, crucially, using twitter marketing shouldn’t be all that different

At the last count, Twitter had around 300 million monthly active users, which gives you a huge community to which you can market your products just by bashing out 140 characters; the five minutes you spend waiting for a bus can become an opportunity to market your brand from your mobile phone. It’s not quite as simple as that, but the good news is that it really isn’t that much more complicated either. Assuming you’re already familiar with Twitter, the mental gear-change that’s required to switch from using it for personal reasons to business marketing isn’t as pronounced as you might think. Lots of people, when they start tweeting as a brand, get stiff and formal, and treat Twitter marketing like it’s a one-way broadcast platform from which they can tell the world about their company. But your customers and potential customers are more likely to engage with your brand when it’s warm and passionate about the type of products it makes, and its business, too.

#1 – STRATEGIC PLANNING

twitter marketing

The most important thing is to decide what your strategy is. Why are you using Twitter as a marketing tool, and what do you hope to get out of it? Perhaps it’s specifically to drive sales, which is a valid and understandable reason, but be careful with your approach, because people dislike being hounded to buy things. Maybe it’s to build up your brand’s personality (twitter marketing). You may want to be part of a community of people and brands involved with a subject. Or you might simply want to share your passion for something with others.

Your motivation is likely to be a mix of all those things and more. That’s fine, but make sure you have clearly defined your goal for marketing via Twitter. Be prepared to adapt and refine your strategy as you go. Do so in response to customer engagement with your tweets, and as a reaction to broader trends on Twitter, in your marketplace and in the macroeconomic world, but do have a strategy to begin with. Start your own business | 113.

Regardless, your brand needs to have a personality and a human quality, so even before you start tweeting about your products, make sure you are establishing that personality. Tweet behindthe- scenes glimpses of how your products are made, retweet stuff you think is interesting or cool, or make a meme. Don’t be afraid to be a little whimsical or irrelevant. Remember that it’s called ‘Twitter’, so not every tweet needs to be important or grand. Think about what sort of tweets you like to see and retweet, and try to replicate that sort of thing. Ultimately, people will only retweet you if they find your tweets funny, useful or interesting.

It’s usually a bad idea to hook up your Twitter account to an auto-post service that will tweet headlines and story snippets from your blog or news site. The results almost always feel impersonal and ill-fitting for what you are trying to achieve. Tweet the stories, sure, but craft the tweets by hand, and try to include a picture – now that http://twitter.com and all the official and unofficial apps display pictures, it’s a great way to make tweets stand out. You can use any image, but for best results make your picture 1,024×512 pixels.

#2 – ASSESS YOUR SUCCESS

twitter marketing

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Don’t obsess about how many followers you have. Although it’s a useful metric, it isn’t the only one. Lots of accounts that have many thousands of followers have used some slightly shady tactics to acquire them, and the good news is that most of those followers aren’t actually valuable – or even real people in some cases. It’s far better to have a small number of followers who engage with you and who can be persuaded to buy from your brand. (twitter marketing strategies)

Services such as Favstar let you track how many people like and retweet your tweets. If your tweets get more likes and retweets than an account with ten or a hundred times the number of followers you have, you’re doing it right.

It’s important to use analytics services such as Favstar to get a clear idea of what you’re doing that works well. Twitter provides simple analytics, which can highlight successful tweets, and you don’t have to buy ads to use it. Followerwonk can, among other things, help you identify which followers are most influential. You might want to show them some special attention.

#3 – MEANINGFUL FOLLOWERS

twitter marketing

If you want to attract more real followers, you can do it either by just posting stuff that people will want to share to their followers, or by more overt means. The latter often means paying to get your brand in front of followers (see ‘Can buy me love’ on the opposite page), or by using something like a competition. Be careful to list terms and conditions, and unless you state otherwise, be prepared to send the prize anywhere in the world. Here’s an example, which would have a picture attached: “Win our three best-selling organic beers: bathbrewco.com/threefaves Follow and RT to enter; ends 12 May 10am GMT.” Existing followers will retweet this, exposing the competition and the brand to new people, who might become new fans. Avoid the ambiguity of digits in dates as this may cause confusion between the USA and the UK. If you mention a time, also state the timezone. (Best example for twitter marketing)

Use Twitter to talk with customers, both existing and potential. Some will use your @username in their tweets, making it easy to respond to praise or criticism, but you can also keep an eye on more under-the-radar chatter by using Twitter’s search feature.

Simply searching for your business name can show up lots of irrelevant tweets, but you can string together operators to narrow the search. See here for details on how to do this. Responding to someone who is talking about but not to you might seem creepy, however, so bear that in mind when replying!

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Twitter marketing: for your business

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