Twitter is a great marketing tool but people often get it wrong, either by broadcasting too much, being too pushy or ignoring their followers. The best way to treat Twitter is as if it’s a networking event. Anyone who networks regularly knows you don’t walk into the room and immediately force your business card onto everyone or tell them what you sell and ask for a cheque! Networking is about building relationships with people, offering support and advice and raising your profile – and from that, business normally follows. Twitter is exactly the same – it’s about connecting with people, not giving the hard sell. If you haven’t quite got your head around using Twitter for business, here are five quick tips to get you started.
1. Use your profile
When you open a Twitter account you’ll be able to create a profile, which includes a 160 character “bio” about you, a photo and a web link. This profile is often the first thing people see when they find you on Twitter, so make sure you fill it in. If there’s nothing about you, or your photo is the standard Twitter “egg”, you’re less likely to get people following you. Upload a decent photo (preferably of you rather than your logo), add a few words that describe who you are and what you do and include a link to your website.
2. Be yourself
On Twitter, people will follow you and engage with you because they like you so be yourself. Yes, you’re on there to represent your business but if all you do is talk about work people are going to switch off. Get involved in conversations, mention blog posts and news stories that you found interesting, let people get to know the real you rather than some corporate image. The 80/20 rule is a good one to follow here – make sure 80% of your tweets are social and 20% are business-related.
3. Give away a little
A great way to demonstrate that (a) you’re a lovely person and (b) you know your stuff is to give away your knowledge. Look out for people asking for advice on your specialist subject, and don’t be afraid to help out. Keep an eye out for anything your followers can help with too by retweet ing other users’ requests for advice. It’s all about good karma here – help others and the help will come back your way when you need it!
4. Be polite
Don’t ignore your followers. If someone replies to you, or is kind enough to retweet one of your tweets, thank them for it. Twitter is all about communicating, but if it’s one way it’s not going to work. Join in the conversation – but never say anything you wouldn’t say face to face, because once it’s out there, there’s no taking it back!
5. Take part in Follow Friday
Follow Friday is a great way to thank your followers for sticking with you – and with any luck they’ll return the favour. Every Friday you can highlight your favourite followers by sending an @ message with their names and the tag #ff . Some people do themed Follow Friday tweets – the clients they’ve worked with this week, or their favourite bloggers and so on. Other people just tweet random lists of people they like. It’s entirely up to you – but it’s a very powerful way of highlighting your followers and getting some new followers in return.
If you’re not yet using Twitter for business then the team at HodgesNet can help! Have a look at our Social Media Services or give us a call on 01793 608777 to discuss how we can work together.