how to use twitter
Share your Products & Services + Engage with your Customers
= Successfully Market your Business!
Did you know that around 42% of companies have acquired a new customer via Twitter? You could be missing out on potential customers if you’re not using Twitter. Not only can you reach new customers (by tweeting content which twitter users want to share with their followers) but you can keep up to date with what your competitors are up to (by following them), as well as engage with your current customers (to let them know what you’re doing).
Setting Up Your Twitter Account
First things first. You’ll need to set up your twitter account and make sure that your username, profile picture, background graphic and brief summary all reflect your business brand. Use your company logo and coordinating colours to brand your twitter account in line with your business. You can either select a plain background or upload a photo or graphic file to personalise your account, and when you write the 160 character profile about your business, remember to include your location, website address and the basics about the products and services you offer.
Then you’ll need to start following people. Follow twitter users that are existing and potential customers, suppliers and contractors. Also add relevant trade organisations, businesses local to you, and any other professional contacts you have, even if they are not directly related to your line of business. Their followers may be interested in what your business has to offer.
A tweet can be up to 140 characters, so you need to be concise, but you can include links, photos and videos from YouTube. General tweets will go out to all your followers, and if you mention the username of someone in your tweet, it will be seen by both your followers and theirs. You can send direct message which are private, to users who follow you and you can also share a tweet with your followers by retweeting it.
Tweeting for your business is a fine balance of promoting your products and services whilst tweeting about things your followers actually want to know about. You don’t want to bore your followers with endless plugs for a new product range, but you need to be able to create interest in your business.
Don’t be afraid to add some personality to your tweets. You obviously need to get your point across, but keep your content light-hearted and avoiding directly promoting your products or services. The aim of tweeting is to engage your customers and create interest in your business. In Twitter world you want to be interesting to follow and approachable. Direct sales can be done elsewhere.
Engaging with Your Customers
Twitter can be a great way to enhance your customer service. Your customers can communicate with you directly, either with questions, comments or problems they may be having. It’s important to remember though, that if you are committed to using twitter you need to keep up to date with it. Like an unanswered phone call, a message on Twitter that isn’t replied to is bad for your business, so responding quickly to your followers and regularly tweeting shows your customers you care. Using the Twitter app on your smartphone and activating push notifications will make this even easier.
When you tweet something, it may be useful to direct your followers to a related page on your website so that they can find out more information. Make sure you include a link in your tweet. Similarly, when someone is visiting your website, make it easier for them to share your content or particular product by including a Tweet button on your site. It’s really important to create a seamless online presence so that your business not only looks professional, but to make the user experience simple and effortless. Adding a twitter timeline to your website allows you to share your twitter conversations so that visitors can engage with you easily without having to leave your website. This is great for customer service.
Some Key Points to Consider
- Use Twitter as a customer service tool – to quickly answer questions and address complaints
- Build a loyal local community – who can provide support and share local issues
- Initiate conversations with your followers, continue it, and encourage your followers to tweet to each other.
- Tweet relevant content - Keep your followers interested. if you’re a plumber, your customers might appreciate DIY advice
- Tweet frequently – but not too often. You don’t want to annoy your followers with irrelevant information.
- Make sure people can find you easily – add a link to twitter and a timeline of your twitter account to your website. Also include a ‘Tweet This’ tool so that visitors can easily share any content you publish.
You’ll need to monitor your activity over time to see what your followers do and don’t respond to. And remember, quantity doesn’t always mean quality – you don’t need 1000s of followers if they’re never going to buy your product or use your service.
For more information about any of the points mentioned here, support.twitter.com has some easy to follow guides and FAQs.