Twitter: A Gateway for Brand Chatter
The question that all new clients ask me during our initial discovery call is which social media platforms we should be focusing on during our marketing strategy planning.
9 out of 10 are surprised when I include Twitter on the list, and those same nine usually have zero experience with the platform.
Twitter will always have a place in my heart when it comes to social media, from both a personal and business standpoint. Twitter is where my social media existence began almost 7 years ago. Granted, at the time you only had two real options; Twitter and Facebook. But it was through Twitter that I connected to the communities and individuals that made my future what it is today; some that are still to this day lasting friendships and valuable business connections.
Why should businesses care about Twitter in a Facebook-Instagram ruled kingdom? Brand chatter.
Twitter is home to over 100 million users daily who are all participating in real-time conversations at any point in the day. According to Twitter, 9 out of 10 of these users have had a conversation with or about small and medium-sized businesses. It’s the place to go when you want to give quick props to – or complain about – a business, product, or service.
This real-time feed of conversations is also the perfect gateway for businesses to personally introduce themselves to new markets, as it’s the only social media platform where it’s ok to butt into any conversation without looking like a stalker.
As Gary Vay puts it, “Twitter is still the only open cocktail party on the internet. It has always been unique in that it is a truly a social network and not a solely a content pushing platform.”
Here are some tips on how to get started – or improve upon – Twitter for Business.
– First and foremost, pin a tweet to your Twitter profile. This is your chance to showcase a tweet that delivers an important message about your brand. Similar to pinning posts on Facebook, this is the first tweet people will see when they visit your profile, so make it a good one!
– Invest in learning how to use social media management dashboards such as TweetDeck or HootSuite. With its fast-paced, real-time feeds, Twitter can be almost overwhelming for businesses who are just starting out with an account and these dashboards can help you cut through all the chatter. By using one of these dashboards, you can monitor your brand’s chatter in less than 10 minutes a day.
– Also along the lines of using a social media management dashboard is the ability to schedule out tweets in advance. This is important because strategy and planning is the key for businesses who want to do social media right – but posting in real time every single day isn’t feasible for most. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Use these dashboards to schedule out a month’s worth of tweets and then check in once a day to engage and monitor brand chatter.
– Use Twitter on a regular basis to search for people talking about topics related to your business and niche. Twitter’s advanced search can perform miracles; you can pretty much look up anything about a conversation – including geo-specific tweets. It’s like direct targeting without having to pay for it!
– Do plan on putting in the work. The key to Twitter is real-time engagement, so actively look for conversations that you can add value to and connect with future potential customers.
– Don’t just tweet links to your own blog or be overly self-promotional. Some of the most success brands on Twitter focus on educating and informing their community and not just about the sell. One of my favorite pieces of advice from Gary Vaynerchuk is the jab, jab, jab, right hook strategy. This strategy also holds true with Twitter and how you tweet.
– Don’t just tweet text; use a wide variety of links, videos, texts and photos. As they say, variety is the spice of life and this also holds true with your social media content.
– If you’re going to use hashtags in a tweet, keep it to a minimum. When a hashtag is necessary, pick out one or two hashtags that are best suited for that tweet. This will keep your tweets from looking to clutter or spammer and will save you from wasting some of your 140 characters.
Does your business use Twitter and if so, what are your favorite things about the platform?
Additional Reading and Sources