The number of businesses using social media has skyrocketed over the last few years to heights that no one could have predicted. Social media offers businesses a unique platform through which they can interact and engage with customers, get feedback and deal with queries and promote and market themselves. It’s cemented itself in the everyday lives of many businesses and those who do it effectively are reaping the many benefits it has to offer.
You have a Facebook, why bother with Twitter?
OK, well you have a BBQ, why bother with a George Forman Grill? The end result is the same, the food is cooked, you eat it and it tastes fantastic.Well Twitter and Facebook are the same the end result is pretty similar but the features are quite different as is how you communicate and engage with customers.
If you don’t have a Twitter account then sign-up, upload a suitable image and fill in the “about” section. The next step? Follow our six tips for using Twitter for business;
Tip 1 – Be Strategic
Think of Twitter as you own email account. Do you enjoy getting spammed? If you do please comment below because you’ll be the first we’ve ever met.
There’s nothing more frustrating than having to scroll down individually deleting, one by one, each irrelevant email sent by extremely uncreative scam “artists” trying to convince you you’ve won the lottery, just send on your credit card details and sure throw in the deed to your house while you’re at it.
Your followers check their Twitter feeds for news and relevant tweets so the last thing they want to see is their feeds clogged up by you because it’s easy to hit the unfollow button.
Tip 2 – Use Hash tags #
Check out what topics are trending and see if there’s any relevant to your business. 9 times out of 10 it’s Justin Bieber trending. So unless you’re running a Justin Bieber themed barber shop avoid using #justinbieber or any other irrelevant trending terms.
If you’re a restaurant this can work pretty well as I’ve seen a number of restaurant related terms trending over the last few weeks. Just check out the # Discover section of your Twitter account and get interacting. If you’re a restaurant and you see something relevant is trending then tweet followed by whatever # tag. Create your tweet around the trending topic and engage with other Twitter users.
Tip 3 – Follow the Industry Leaders
The thought leaders within a certain industry will have hundreds of thousands of followers and often much, much more. Check out how their using Twitter for business and see why it is they’re so successful at what they do.
Often this can be due to status within the industry itself, for example, Matt Cutts Google’s head of webspam has over 196,000 followers. Many of these followers can be accredited to his status at Google and online but if we dig a little deeper it’s clearly evident that he interacts with followers, answers questions and participates in industry discussions.
Tip 4 – Watch the Competition
Keep an eye on the competition. A lot of people are using Twitter for business within your industry so check them out and benchmark your business against them. An activity we recommend doing is benchmarking against an indirect compoetitior within the same industry. So take, for example, if you’re a nightclub in Dublin City Centre.
There’s a colossal amount of competition so differentiation and competitive advantage are essential. Check out nightclubs in London or New York and see how they’re using Twitter for business and apply the successful practices to your own business.
Tip 5 – Use Twitter for Business Professionally
Your Twitter for business profile is out there for the world to see so it needs to reflect positively on your business. If a customer tweets a complaint don’t delete it, deal with it in the open. I guarantee you nothing reads better or creates a better perception of your business than when someone reads a complaint and sees how the business resolves it. Do things out in the open and engage, engage, engage. Offer advice and be a beacon of knowledge. These guys do it pretty well.
Be consistent when using Twitter for business and get into the habit of using it on a daily basis. If you have a smart phone download the app and tweet on the bus/train/walk to work. It’s a proven way of driving targeted traffic and increasing the brand awareness of a business. Switch it up a bit, have a number of people in the company tweeting throughout the week but ensure you create a code of ethics for using the company profile. A social media disaster can be catastrophic for a business.
Do you find using Twitter for business is more effective than Facebook?