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Your Business On Twitter

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Getting Started on Twitter

 

Before you start: Have a plan.

Twitter account – Create a new Twitter account for your brand and business with the idea of extending your brand story to your customers and followers. Define your target audience on Twitter as you are starting out. Do your research on your target market and their use of Twitter. Include Twitter handles of actual target users and a create a list.
It would be highly beneficial to use your already developed persona that represents your customers and identifies them on Twitter. Now follow them.

Design

First and foremost, the Twitter page needs to be designed and optimized. If a business has the expectation to be perceived in a significant way, then the Twitter page needs to look like the brand it represents, following a theme that is consistent with the messaging and audience goal. The Twitter premise of messaging was 140 character without including the URL and the Image. They recently revised that to exclude the URLS or images giving us more space for messaging. With that said, more isn’t always better. You want a message that drives the point home more efficiently and engaging. It allows people space to retweet while adding their take to that message.

Connect
A Twitter following (your followers) will include other people besides your potential customers, people in your industry, partners or people with general interest in your content and those people hoping to learn or those who think you fit their customer persona (http://search.twitter.com/). Go on and encourage them to follow you back.
Reason to have a twitter account to start is two-fold: customer service and brand
Have a twitter plan for your business

Should you use Twitter as part of your Marketing Plan? If you’re looking to increase sales, generate leads, or connect with prospects, it should not be a channel to left to just anyone, to post content unrelated to the brand message or image. As part of the marketing message, the team responsible for marketing should handle the account. In the situation where the twitter account supports an existing customers base, answering inquiries on the customer account, issues or customer complaints is the responsibility of the customer service team. Educate, sometimes entertain, engage and support your customers.

When you think about it, this is really simple. You have product and services that you need to educate your customers about. Your customers have questions and inquire that you can address on this platform that would be informative to others. Do not shy away from difficult conversations with them. This goes a long way in building trust in your community, with your followers or fans

Social Media Strategy plan

In essence, Twitter can be your customer service tool, Brand monitoring tool, sales opportunities tool or the Promoter of other corporate social activities and brand messaging (i.e. blogging, Facebook, YouTube, Etc). As a communication and social networking tool, Twitter can connect with customers, prospects, journalists, employees, candidates, investors and marketing partners. Understanding where Twitter fits within the overall mix of online marketing and communications will help with: allocating monitoring and engagement resources, establishing a working social media policy, workflow management, and reporting. You may very well find a number of synergies available through Twitter, such as connecting with journalists and bloggers for PR purposes but also encouraging link usage when citing the company to assist with SEO efforts.

Is this Your Brands or Business Twitter Plan?

A basic twitter plan for a brand/business should look like this

Goals – Define a specific goal: product promotions, increasing website traffic or Sales or customer service
Message – How will you connect to a) current followers, b) prospective customers, c) provide better customer service through this channel
Hashtag – Identify hashtags that easily identifiable or related to your business – e.g.#sme #agribusiness or #Your Industry – Hashtags are tags used to identify a specific topic, trend, business etc by Twitter users or followers.
Keywords – Identifies your business message and often what you use to reach your customers
Schedule – Decide when to schedule your tweets. Start out by scheduling tweets to be released throughout the day. You will soon find the best time to tweet via analytics. see https://analytics.twitter.com
Frequency – How frequently should you post? Tweets per day, we recommend no less than 5
Tone – Examine how others communicate on twitter, especially the more successful marketers and adapt their writing style until you define your own voice.
Tactics – Use a little variety when writing your tweets, for example, ask questions, make observations, share poll results, and quotes. Again, study the masters and see how they do it

Tweet the same content more than once – Twitter power users also know that it’s okay to submit the same post more than once since not all followers will have seen it the first time. And it’s not even necessary to say, “In case you missed it.” Just tweet it.

Remember to reach out and connect with others who retweet you and who have a similar marketing fit. Engagement, bring others into the conversation, add your hashtags. Develop the subject for the week by highlighting the topic encourage others to engage.

Conclusion
Start out slowly, review your stats regularly and make adjustments where necessary.
What to look for: Meeting marketing goals, a trend in the right direction for your business and last but not least engagement with your community.
Baby steps, of course…

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