Social media: How Twitter works for your online business. 21 useful tips.
You are considering starting with Twitter or have just started and can use some tips. Then it would be useful if someone tells you what to look out for. This way you don’t have to reinvent the wheel yourself. So, how does Twitter work for businesses? In addition to various basic principles, I list the top 21 things you should definitely know. After reading these tips you will know quite well how to use Twitter for business. However, before doing so, let’s first get some more information about this popular Social Media Network.
- Twitter is a social media platform that requires speed and a relatively high frequency. You can publish short messages (tweets) of up to 280 characters.
- The social aspect here means more than ever that you respond to other people’s messages and not just send messages only. In addition, commercial tweets are usually not appreciated. Your followers really need something interesting to think about without having the idea that you are just placing ads.
- Every month, more than 330 million users worldwide are active on Twitter and there are 145 million daily active users.
- There is a clear difference between business and personal twittering. In a personal way, you share your daily life and interests. However, when you tweet for business, you send tweets into the world to achieve a commercial goal. For example, to increase brand awareness, expand your network of business relationships or communicate with (potential) customers.
Twitter for beginners: the technical jargon.
- Twitter has its own jargon and this can cause confusion when you are just starting out. For example, we speak of a ‘tweet’ when you post a message. Posting is tweeting.
- A ‘reply’ means that you respond to another person’s message. If you like a post, you can also retweet it. Your followers will see this message with the original sender and your company name.
- A ‘follower’ is a follower of your account, like a friend on Facebook. When the follower follows you and vice versa, you can send a ‘Direct Message’. This message is hidden from others.
- In tweets, consider using ‘hashtags’ (#). When words with a hashtag are searched by a random twitterer, your message can appear in his Twitter’s search results. There are no spaces in hashtags. For example if you are a real estate broker in California your hashtags could be #realestate, #realestatecalifornia etc.
Interesting facts about Twitter.
- How does Twitter work? Well, apparently excellent on mobile: over 80% of twitterers worldwide use Twitter on their smartphones and 75% of daily tweets are sent via a mobile device.
- But Twitter does not work optimally for everyone. Over 300 million of all Twitter accounts have no followers at all.
- Twitterers have an average of 47 followers and follow 89 people themselves. These are low numbers, but that may be related to the fact that 44% of people with a Twitter account have never sent a message.
- In terms of target audience reach, it is also interesting to know that young people between the ages of 15 and 19 are tweeting less and less, and users between the ages of 40 and 64 are becoming more active on the platform.
The 21 tips & tricks for Twitter success.
Think of Twitter as a way to interest the audience, build a bond, connect with (potential) customers, recruit, increase job satisfaction and establish loyalty. These 21 tips will give you a flying start.
- Determine your Twitter objective: Twitter for beginners starts with a clear target group definition. Assuming your target audience is active on Twitter, first consider what you want to achieve with the use of Twitter. What is the objective? Keep in mind that Twitter is primarily intended to further develop reputation and identity.
- Visualization: Work out in advance how your account will visually look in terms of profile image (400 × 400 pixels), background (1280 × 1024 pixels), cover image (1500 × 500 pixels) and use of color.
- Content strategy: Make a plan of action for the content. How do you keep the tweets and landing pages interesting? What topics will you be tweeting about, what will be your tone of voice and how often will you post tweets?
- No advertising: Keep the message personal, positive and informative. Never lose anyone and realize that commercial texts annoy and chase followers away. Advertising is the number one annoyance among Twitter’s members.
- One topic: Choose one clear approach to the message, which answers the problem of your followers.
- Hashtags: Use up to two appropriate hashtags (keywords starting with #) in your tweet. Find out in advance whether there is a lot of search on this hashtag and whether it is relevant to the problem or question. You can test keywords via various online services, but you can also simply enter the search query in the search function of Twitter. Never use trending hashtags that have nothing to do with the content or problem or question.
- Short link: Always include a shortened link to a landing page on your website in a tweet. On this page you answer the problem in an article or perhaps with an action or offer.
- Images: Provide an image for each tweet. The optimal size is 440 by 220 pixels. Messages with a photo provide more interaction, such as clicks on the message, opening the photo and clicking through the posted link. This way you increase awareness around your Twitter account or brand.
- Best times: Find out which days and times you can best post tweets to reach as many followers as possible. It is and remains a matter of trying and discovering what works, but in general it is best to tweet between 12 pm and 4 pm. For brands that focus on consumers, it was discovered that you get 17% more involvement by sending tweets during weekends. Business wise it is best to be active on Twitter from Monday to Friday.
- Administrators and Twitter Dashboards: Who is going to manage the account? Is that one person or are there more? What agreements do you make about this? What can and cannot be tweeted? Which program do you use to work centrally?
- Follow Policy: Follow people whom you want to follow you back too. This can be colleagues, partners, suppliers, customers and potential customers. Share their content and chat with them.
- Quick response: Research shows that 10% of the people you follow will follow you back. If someone follows you back, retweets your post or sends you a mention, make sure you respond within 24 hours. Even when it concerns a complaint. Turn your answer into an opportunity to promote your brand or name.
- Binding: If you post interesting content for your target group and followers, you automatically bind them more to your account or brand. They are more likely to share and respond to your content. Ask your important followers for a retweet. That way you can reach even more people.
- Citation: Always thank and mention the source if you use information from another tweeter. That is appreciated and increases the chance of more followers.
- Promotion: Promote Twitter on your website, in the signature of your mail and on other social media. Let everyone know that you have a Twitter account and actively post interesting content there.
- Twitter app: Put the Twitter app on your phone to keep a close eye on your timeline. If you get a new follower, mention or retweet, you will receive a notification on your phone. This way you can react quickly and enter into a dialogue. Hootsuite also has an app for your smartphone, with which you can easily manage your account.
- Points for improvement: Analyze your Twitter statistics regularly and draw your conclusions. For example, you can see which tweets performed well. Do you discover a pattern in the type of tweets that generates more engagement than others? Then you know what to do: post more tweets like that.
- Interaction: In the grade overviews you can see the interaction rate, the number of clicked links, retweets and favorites and how many replies you have earned. You can also see who your followers are, what their interests are and where they come from.
- Don’t stalk: Damage can be done and that certainly applies to the number of tweets you post. The advice is to tweet regularly, at least a few times a week, but certainly no more than five tweets a day. If you have nothing to report, don’t send anything. Always keep the quality and exclusivity of the messages in mind.
- Optimal web care: Monitor continuously what is said about you or your company on Twitter and react. By monitoring what is said about you, you can immediately apply some web care. If a potential customer has a sales question or an existing customer has a specific product or technical question, immediately provide him or her with information. This is a good point of contact to bind the customer (extra) to you.
- A tour of the Twitter landscape: By setting important keywords in software such as TweetDeck, you can immediately respond to messages about you. The results are neatly grouped per keyword.
These 21 tips should give you a good start and make it easy to skip the first Twitter pitfalls. This list is probably not complete, but all statements are based on years of experience. Keep in mind that, what works well for one, may not always produce the same result for another. Don’t expect many followers within a few weeks, this number will be growing steadily with a correct approach. Making social media a success takes a lot of time and requires perseverance. Experiment a lot, learn, keep going and discover how to use Twitter for business. To learn even more you can also visit the Twitter Business Blog on this page. Good luck!