Using Twitter For Your Business
Do you use Twitter in your business or do you consider it a waste of time? I know I was wondering the same thing a few months ago.
But more and more people have joined Twitter, including many of my highly respected successful friends.
At first I didn’t get it. The twitter feed moves so quickly and it felt like a time waster to me. But after a very short time, I was amazed at the level of access I was getting to quality people.
Twitter is been around since 2006 and quickly became very popular. There are over 500 million users today, and that number is rapidly growing.
Twitter allows you to post updates (called Tweets) as often as you want (and limited to 140 characters). When you follow other people on Twitter, you see their tweets. When they follow you, they see your tweets. Users can read, view, post (tweet) and retweet (RT) your messages to the people that follow them.
So here are some tips to help you become a Twitter Master and use Twitter to expand your business:
Your Twitter Profile –
When you setup your profile, make it professional. Since you’re using Twitter as a business tool, then you’ll want your Twitter profile to be original and professional to attract the broadest audience.
Pick out key points from your blog posts and use them in your tweets. It should be a short sentence that is designed to get their attention, and should include a link to your blog post. Then send it out to your followers. The same tweet can be edited and reworded to keep it fresh and new and then tweeted again several times.
Engage with others –
When you find someone that tweets interesting or informative information, take the time to recognize them. I keep track of several key people and I retweet their posts. There’s no point in me trying to outdo them.
By Retweeting other’s tweets, you engage in social interactions and build followers. This helps gain trust that you are in this as a professional.
When someone Retweets your tweet, be sure to acknowledge and thank them. Everyone loves to be appreciated.
Tweet Schedule –
Set up a tweet schedule and tweet often. Twitter can take up a lot of your time if you’re not careful. Write out your tweets in the morning and set the time of day that you want them to hit the Twitter stream. Or even better… try to schedule your tweets a few days in advance. This helps use your time more efficiently. You’ll still need to check in throughout the day to Retweet others posts, follow others, and interact with them.
There are many helpful social management tools out there that will allow you to schedule your tweets in advance. Two really good ones are HootSuite and Buffer.
Another valuable tool is Twitter for Facebook. If you are on Facebook, this application forwards your Twitter updates directly to Facebook as status updates.
As with any Social Media be careful about always promoting your business. The Twitter community values interaction with real people. If the only thing you’re adding to the conversation is a push to visit your website, you aren’t going to have a strong and valuable reputation on Twitter. Some people will still follow you and click your links, but you’ll be losing out with many others.
Concentrate of providing value. Talk to people about their interests. Give tips to help them or make their lives/businesses easier. As long as people feel that you care about them, they’ll be more likely to look at your business when you ask. There are no hard and fast rules, but try to develop a ratio of at least 4-5 value added tweets for every promotional tweet.
I hope you find these tips helpful to you in finding success with Twitter. It can be a great business tool if used properly…. And definitely one you’ll want in your Social Media toolbox!
Be sure to follow me on Twitter or on that other social media site, Facebook.
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By Lynn Huber
p.s. A hashtag or # symbol used before a word or string of words (Americans sometimes call it the “pound sign” but others call it a hash) denotes a public discussion about a topic. Clicking on a hashtag will bring up a list of search results for that string of words on Twitter, so you can see what other people have to say about the matter. Tweet-ups—or meet-ups on Twitter—typically use hashtags as an organization tool to get people together.
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