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Twitter

Promotional Product Strategy
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Friday
Apr192013

Twitter - Using Social for Business

Twitter, that place where people tweet online, is now the fastest growing social platform in the world, and has over 485 million accounts and 288 million active profiles. These are pretty impressive statistics for a website that just turned 7 years old. For any business, Twitter.com is the place to market, and not with ads—just your words. In the UK alone, a recent report on Twitter discovered that 1 in every 25 tweets mentioned a brand. Today, there are over 400 million tweets per day—you do the math and you will discover that this is someplace you need to be, and be active. 

Twitter.com is an easy site to join, but to make this site really effective in your marketing plan, you need to set up your account properly. First, write your profile and make it strong and interesting. People often look at your profile when deciding to follow you, and if you haven’t said anything about yourself or your company, what possible reason do they have to follow you? Over to the left of the screen, Twitter provides an on-going list of people you might want to follow.

Don’t go for large numbers of followers; it is more effective to have a smaller group of followers who are truly interested in what you have to say. Choose people to follow by considering their profiles and how they might be relevant to your marketing goals. Tweeting to a small group of followers is extremely productive for your message will resonate, then involve them in a discussion, which eventually leads to action.

When tweeting is where things get tricky—you only have 140 characters to say your piece and get people interested. That is roughly 25 words, so think about what you are saying before you write. It must be concise and directly to the point you are making, or in other words, short and sweet. When tweeting, you want to engage (involve) others in a discussion, and the best way to do that is to ask a meaningful question or give some significant information about a topic which interests your followers. If your in-town customers regularly ask the same question, tweet that answer out.

People love to hear about the story behind the story, so keep them apprised of new developments in your business. You can also tweet special deals for your followers or events that might be coming up or events that you are attending.

Anything can become a tweet, but make sure you choose your words carefully and that every word is aimed at your marketing goal.

When we tweet, we send out information to our followers, and they can choose to resend that same information to their followers (a retweet). Another way to engage followers is to retweet appropriate tweets that you receive. If you retweet, think about customizing the text toward your marketing. When retweeting, promote others generously, and followers will appreciate you. You will also be retweeted more if you leave a little room in the tweet for the next person’s name. And—don’t forget to thank people for retweeting you. Use their first name, and the conversation starts.

Engagement.

Recent studies of how Twitter is being used disclosed important user information. Some actions that reduce engagement are tweeting too frequently (keep it to no more than once per hour, and some experts recommend no more than 4 times per day) and using more than 2 #hashtags in a tweet (leads to a large drop in engagement immediately). Your tweets are more effective and have a greater chance of being retweeted if you tweet during the busiest times (8 am – 7 pm)—in fact, according to the study, you can obtain up to 30% more engagement if you tweet during the busy hours.

This information is just the “tip of the iceberg” for Twitter. There is much more to be learned and used in what can be a free yet an incredibly influential marketing tool. Recognize that your followers become marketers for you, especially if they share your information with their followers. By engaging people in meaningful conversations, you gain the ability to subtly market your brand without limitations. This is powerful, viral marketing for the simple price of writing a little tweet.


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