As I come across many small businesses, I often talk about the benefits of using Twitter to raise the profile of their business, and yet I still see the question in their expression – really? I don’t want to know what so-and-so has had for breakfast. Why would that interest me? The truth is that this is far from what actually happens on Twitter – Twitter is so much more than this…
With 500 million Tweets a day and 230 million active users, people turn to Twitter to bring them closer to the things they care about, whether it’s the news that affects their lives or the businesses down the block.
By sharing helpful tips and links you are showing to your peers and potential customers that a) you are keeping up with news and views within your industry but also b) that you are reaching out to other people who may be looking to hire someone with your skills.
1. Listen and Learn
To be successful with Twitter, it’s important to spend a little bit of time listening. A good start would be to see what your competitors are tweeting about or search for industry keywords to listen and gather market knowledge. This is an easy way to get insights that you can use to inform your strategy.
2. Connect in context
On Twitter, people talk about what they care about and what’s happening around them right now, be it personal or business. This gives you powerful context to connect your message to what’s most meaningful to your customers in real time. By engaging with real-time Tweets it can influence conversations in a way that can help build your business.
3. Tweet useful information
To establish yourself as an expert in your field, it’s important to tweet out information that will be helpful to your peers and your potential customers. If you know something useful, or have a tip you could share it will increase your followers and you will be accredited as the “go-to” person on your topic. People will then start to recommend you and share your tips.
4. Find your voice and establish your brand
Your voice can affect the way you communicate not only with your customers but also on Twitter. What you say, how you say it can have a tremendous impact on all customer relationships.
Just be yourself, be unique. You don’t need to be too formal at all, your tweets should reflect your own personality, your brand and your business. People will respond to humour and friendly tweets.
Stand out from the crowd. We are all different, you just need to find a way to make your voice louder. Use plenty of images and videos to help visualise this.
5. Be generous with your re-tweets
Interact and respond with fellow people. Reply when people tweet about you. Favourite and retweet positive messages and thank those who praise you. Keep in mind that Retweets can also represent your voice and brand personality. Should someone tweet you regarding a critical Tweets about your business, reply promptly in a calm and helpful manner. It’s important to be consistently polite and courteous at all times.
6. Write good tweets
Once you’ve found your voice, write like your having a conversation with a good friend. Be approachable and don’t use too much jargon. Be clear and concise at all times.
Use your razor wit! If you have a sharp personality that often has an opinion, share it. People see entertainment and education online, be a part of it.
Make your content shareable. Make it easy to share your content online, easy for your followers to re-tweet or share with their followers.
7. Make it a habit
People wonder how often they should tweet. The answer: test and learn to see what feels right for you and your business. Don’t try and run before you can walk, so I recommend initially just once a day until you feel confident that you can build up steam to do more. Timing will also have an impact so work out what time of the day is best for you. Like all these things, once you get into the groove it will become a lot easier.
This is just the tip of the iceberg for what Twitter can offer… I would love to hear about your experiences.