Digital Skills Academy
Using Twitter to Grow Your Own Business

Using Twitter to Grow Your Own Business

In an earlier article, we discussed how various social media platforms can help you with growing your business, depending on your area and who you are looking to sell too.

Here we focus on Twitter because it can help you across a range of business sectors. Even if your main business opportunities are on another platform such as Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram or something else having an active and professional, believable twitter profile should also be a key part of your strategy.

Make your own Twitter account attractive and believable to others

Key twitter questions to ask yourself, and some answers that might help.

Are you an egg? Make your twitter profile look like you care!

Put an image up. If you can’t even be bothered, it won’t inspire others either.

Have you ever tweeted?

Start tweeting. It doesn’t have to be anything personal. Nor should they all be about your company, though some are fine. Find some good tweets by people who you are impressed by, and retweet them. Your guiding principle should be, is this tweet likely to be of help to others, or visually impressive? If so, then share it. Tweeting will gain you followers, it also helps make your own twitter become a more attractive proposition for others to engage.

Use Twitter as a foot in the door. Are you building up your contacts?

Maintaining a Twitter account should not be seen as an either/or option in relation to your online professional presence. A website is vital, email an important business tool as well, YouTube might be where your fans are, but Twitter gives you the ability to jump the queue and achieve responses from people and organisations that might otherwise not respond to your approaches through other channels.

Twitter is a complementary tool in your PR marketing efforts. Emails are often ignored. Not because the reader isn’t interested in what you are offering, but often because they just received so many in a day that they don’t have time to respond to them all. Many people receive over 100 emails a day. Your email may get filed under social media, or even the ‘promotions’ tab, which can mean it’s not even seen at the time.

Twitter helps you to nudge people

Twitter enables you to gently nudge people. If they are following you on twitter you can even DM (direct message) them. Be aware though that this is often less effective than publically messaging them. The reason for this is some people do not to respond to DM’s or just miss them for similar reasons to segmented email inboxes. You need to be careful about how you phrase your comments or request when publicly tweeting someone. If phrased carefully though it can be a great way to effectively nudge someone. If you include their twitter handle in the message you can guarantee it will be seen by them, or at least whoever is managing their twitter account.

The great thing about twitter is that it is a fairly subtle way to gradually build up someone’s awareness of you, your brand and your product. There are some basic human instincts too which you can use to your own advantage. Favoriting and retweeting other people’s content will earn you credit with them. Not all the time, but often, we can’t help it, we’re social creatures!

But I don’t want to tweet what I had for breakfast!

How sociable do I need to be on this social media platform?

Quick answer, for business to business, you don’t need to tweet your last meal or your favourite cat pictures. Probably actually better if you don’t share these thoughts here. In this context, the fact that twitter limits you to 140 characters is a great thing. You have to be concise, clear and get to the point. Therefore food/cat /witty observations are not necessary. That said visual tweets still do much better than non-illustrated ones. Ideally, have some great and varied images of your product(s) and services. Vary what you use, and keep looking for new interesting visuals to add to your tweeting image bank.

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What about Twitter in the future?

These tips are intended to help you now to improve your chances of connecting with the people you’d like to reach. There is no guarantee it will remain as useful a place for contacting the right people. Social media platforms rise and fall in popularity. It is part of your challenge to ensure you are constantly monitoring where and how your customers and clients are communicating, to make sure you have a relevant and effective presence there too. Meanwhile, Twitter hashtags can even help you to try and work out where those conversations are happening.  

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