In my last post, Twitter 101: Getting Started on Twitter, we started out with the basics of Twitter and how to set up your profile. Now that you're on Twitter and are getting more familiar with how it works, we’re going to delve into the basics of marketing on Twitter.
The key to connecting with customers on any platform is to create engaging content, and there's a lot you can do to promote it well. Follow these basic steps to get started with your Twitter marketing, engage and interact with your current followers, and gain scores of new followers!
Step 1 – Using Twitter to Drive Traffic
Tweeting is a great way to drive traffic to your website. Did you just write an interesting blog post? Are you running a special offer or have a coupon that is available on your website? Did you just create an ebook that you want to share with your customers? Just took a fun or relevant pic or a short video? These are all great content items to tweet about, and be sure to share a link to the appropriate page on your site! It helps drive engagement with your followers and bring them to your main online presence, your website.
When tweeting your content, don’t be too vague or give away too much info. You want to entice the reader just enough that they follow your link to find out more. If the content is interesting to them, that person may be inclined to share your content or retweet your original tweet. These shares help you gain the attention of others who may not be following you yet, resulting in your company potentially gaining a new follower. Pictures and videos in tweets tend to get a better click-through rate than other content.
Bonus Tip: Always make sure you have the proper social sharing tools on your website so that visitors can easily tweet the information you're sharing!
Step 2 – Monitoring Your Activity
If you’re not actively monitoring your brand on Twitter, then you’re not able to engage with your customers there or promote a positive view of your business in their eyes and the eyes of potential customers.
The best way to do this is to regularly check your “Connect” tab to see who is interacting with your tweets. You can set up email updates to notify you when someone interacts with you through your settings, under email notifications. You can also use software like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck to help you monitor the activity - I prefer Tweetdeck due to its easy access and the fact that is is developed and maintained by Twitter. Also, using the RetweetLab will give you great insights into how your tweets are performing, what times to post, and which posts that are the most engaging.
Another way to find out what your customers are saying is to search within Twitter for your company name or your products. When someone is tweeting about your company or products, whether they have a compliment, question, or complaint, it’s key to respond and let them know that you’re listening and are there to help if they ever need assistance. Don't just respond to every post with a generic “thank you” - this is your opportunity to make a personal connection and respond specifically to that person.
Bonus Tip: Make sure you always follow back your followers, so if they have specific questions they can send you a direct message. If don't follow them back, you could be missing out on a golden opportunity to delight them and have them to sing your praises for how responsive and helpful you are!
Step 3 – Continuing the Conversation
You can use the “Favorite” feature on Twitter to compile all the tweets that your followers post about you on Twitter, almost like a mini-testimonials page. While you're monitoring your activity, make it a habit to favorite others' positive tweets about your company or products, or their retweets of your posts. This can prove invaluable to your marketing efforts on Twitter. You can always share your favorites by sending out a link to your favorites page (e.g. twitter.com/vieodesign/favorites). You can also setup a favorites feed on your website via an embedded timeline, so when your visitors view your web page, they can also see what is being said about you on Twitter.
Using hashtags is another way to encourage people to tweet about your posts or topics of interest, especially when you have an event, webinar, or special, or even in response to the topic of a blog post. When someone is searching for a specific topic on Twitter, using hashtags helps them find the links you're sharing, driving traffic to your website and improving your SEO. You can search Twitter for what people are tweeting using your hashtag via search.twitter.com. You can also use Twitter's embedded timeline to display a feed of all posts containing that hashtag, though I only recommend this if it is a specific hashtag that directly relates to your company, a special, or an event. To learn more about hashtags, check out our post What Are Hashtags and How Can I Use Them for Business?.
Embedding a tweet on your website is a great way to prolong the life of your tweet. If you have a tweet you want to showcase, you can now embed the tweet itself directly into a web page. This then allows the visitor to your website to engage with that particular tweet and share it on Twitter. To learn more about embedded tweets, read Embedding a tweet on your website or blog.
Step 4 – Sharing Expertise
Finally, sharing your expertise is one of the most powerful ways to engage your followers on Twitter and gain new followers. You want to establish yourself as a "thought leader" in your industry, and tweeting tips and useful resources can help your followers embrace you as an expert in your field. Share your own information, but don’t be shy about sharing links to articles by others in your field, as this reinforces that you stay abreast of industry trends and gain knowledge from your peers.
Now, I’m sure you’re thinking that this sounds like a lot of work. I’ll be honest - it is! But you'll only see a gain in traffic and engagement if you put in the hard work of managing your Twitter account. Customers pay you for your expertise, but giving them tips and resources helps you build an ongoing relationship with them. That’s what social media marketing is all about! The relationship and the experience are what keep your customers coming back for more.
You may also want to read the other posts in this series:
You can also download our social media templates to make sure your profiles not only match your branding, but look amazing!