If you are a small business owner who is looking for new ways to market your company, most likely you have heard of Twitter. Twitter is not just a place where people can micro-blog at 140 characters or less or catch up on the latest celebrity gossip. Twitter has become a major marketing factor, even for small business.
However, what can Twitter do for you? And how do you use Twitter to your business advantage? Here are five important tips that all small business owners should use when creating or modifying a Twitter account.
Define Your Needs from Twitter
First, you need to be clear on your expectations. Sure, Twitter is a fun social media website that attracts multitudes by the millions. But don’t expect that your small business will gather hundreds of millions of followers.
What makes Twitter a great marketing outlet is that it doesn’t have a specific paradigm followed by small or large businesses to work. You can find the methods and strategies that make it work for you.
However, to make a strategy work, you need to define it. Do you want to make more sales? Are you interested in growing your customer contact database? Do you want word of mouth and viral marketing through Twitter?
These are the types of questions you need to ask. With a more defined objective in mind, your small business Twitter experience will be much more effective and successful.
Create A Catchy Twitter Account
You only get 140 characters, a thumbnail photo, and a web link to define your business on Twitter. Make it count!
Be resourceful in your short small business description. For instance, read the Twitter bio of ProBlogger created by the world-popular blogging expert, Darren Rowse:
I blog about twitter and tweet about blogging. Sometimes I blog about tweeting about blogging and tweet about blogging about twitter.
Rowse’s business is extremely successful because of simple and catchy statements like the above. Make your short bio count.
Also, use your company logo as your Twitter icon. If you don’t have a logo, consider using a small thumbnail of your product or a headshot of yourself.
Write Regular Posts
In order to acquire followers, you need to have something worth following. Consider these smart tips for your posts.
Post quality links – If you link to another website, be sure it is worth the time of your followers. Avoid sending multitudes of YouTube video links just for the sake of cute cat videos. Make it something worth reading about or even just a quick link to a contemplative photo.
Respond to Twitter mentions – Twitter users “talk” to one another by including the “@” sign in front of your Twitter name. Twitter allows you to see who has mentioned your small business Twitter account. Be sure to respond to them to let them know you’re listening. Even the famous comic/actor/writer/musician, Steve Martin (@SteveMartinToGo) takes time practically every day to respond to a few lucky tweeters who message him.
Include exclusive sales and discounts – Your Twitter followers can be an exclusive group to whom you offer special deals and discounts. Be sure to reward your Twitter followers, and encourage them to pass along the savings to their followers.
Use auto posting software – Posting on Twitter can be a time-consuming job, but you can spend just a few minutes a day writing quality posts to be published at a later time. Software like Hootsuite allows you to easily manage your social media accounts and save posts to be uploaded to Twitter at periodic intervals.
Include Your Twitter URL on All Correspondence
Since one of your goals is likely to grow your group of Twitter followers, include your Twitter URL address on all your correspondence. That includes your letterhead, business cards, and email messages. Your Twitter URL is generally an easy-to-remember twitter.com/YourbusinessName.
Analyze Your Twitter Analytics
You can post all you want on Twitter, but you won’t know how effective they are without analyzing the results. Use online tools like Klout.com, which is an effective website that measures your overall Twitter effectiveness and gives you pointers on how to improve your influence. Another clever tool is TweetPsych.com. Here you can gather statistical data as to how you use references like media, time, money, etc., and find out how you can improve your tweets.
Twitter can be your marketing friend. Learn how to use it wisely, and your small business can make a tremendous impact on this popular social site.