Best practices series: Twitter small business marketing

The final segment of our Social Media Best Practices series focuses on Twitter. This series has introduced best-practices for small business marketing using the top social media channels. If you missed last week’s focus on  Instagram or our earlier posts on Facebook, Pinterest, or LinkedIn, here are the links: FacebookPinterestLinkedInInstagram.

myMarketing Cafe Twitter ProfileThere are so many social media channels available to small businesses and it’s not practical to use every channel available. However it is important to monitor the platforms because even though you might not be using it, someone may be using it to talk about your business.  (One quick and easy tactic is to periodically search Twitter using a hashtag with your business name.)

I love that Twitter requires us to condense our content to 140 characters or less. After all, that’s about as long as our attention span is for determining whether we want to continue with the content. This best practices post provides you with ideas for using Twitter and links to resources written by some Twitter authorities.

If you are going to use Twitter, check-in daily. I am guilty of not logging on to Twitter every day.  It’s an important platform for my service business. If you use Twitter, it’s important for you to log on, engage with your followers, and reply to those who mention you in their tweets, retweet your tweets, or send you direct messages.

Don’t fall into the lazy trap with auto-reply software.  While it’s important to engage with new followers, and existing followers, don’t get wrapped up with auto-reply software.  Your followers can see an auto reply a mile away and it can come across very impersonal.  The most abusive of these platforms are those that automatically send a tweet to new followers, instead of a direct message.  Auto-replies send the same exact message to everyone who follows you.  Using it for direct messages or if you receive just a few followers per day and send out a welcome tweet won’t be bothersome. However, if you receive a lot of new followers daily, your auto-reply tweets will blow up the news feeds of your followers and drive your community crazy. One of my followers used auto-reply by tweeting “Thanks for following. Let me know how I can help you.”  He was very active with Twitter, so this tweet hijacked my Twitter feed.

Make sure your hashtags are relevant to your content.  Content manager Emily Lange created a very helpful infographic that shares proper hashtag# etiquette.

Find the right way to use Twitter with your event marketing. Twitter uses hashtags to help categorize information.  If you gain enough traction on a hashtag, you are awarded with a great deal of exposure. Here are two helpful resources:

Read here to learn how to market an event using social media and specifically Twitter. This is perfect for grand openings, open house event, sales events… the list is endless.

Read here how to create a customized Twitter hashtag share button for your event, plus other important tips.

Use Twitter to identify leads and nurture new relationships.  It’s hard to forge a relationship in 140 characters, but blogger Ross Simmonds offers help in this guide for identifying warm, cold, and hot leads on Twitter.

Integrate Twitter into your customer service strategy.  Social media platforms have become the new forum for customer service issues.  Social Media Examiner posted an excellent guide for integrating Twitter with your customer service.

Be careful when installing smartphone Apps. Most smartphone Apps give you the opportunity to sign in using your Facebook or Twitter account.  If your Twitter account is both your professional identity and your personal identity, watch out during this process. This process gives the App permission to post, as you, on your Twitter account.  One of my favorite myMarketing Cafe members was sharing about a recent experience.  She logged on to her twitter account over a weekend and was checking in on her many industry followers. What she found was the App Banana Kong (a game her 3-year-old uses) posted that she had 67 banana points.

Since you are probably better at the Twitter platform than I am, how about sharing a best practice in the comments? I’d love to hear your advice.

  • Synnovatia

    jolynndeal It was really allot of fun. Being analytic hurt my brain a bit. It’s not something you can over think. I’d highly recommend it.

  • Great investment! Sounds like an awesome thing to do.

  • Synnovatia

    jolynndeal That investment into my stand-up comedy classes must be paying off! (true story. I took stand up comedy last year for a challenge.)

  • Oh my goodness, Jackie I laughed out loud at this! And I was taking a drink, that I’m now wearing, while reading your reply. You are so funny!

  • Synnovatia

    As always, such great information, Jo Lynn! I especially like your suggestion to avoid the lazy trap with automated software! For that suggestion, I give you 10 bananas.