Twitter celebrated double digits this week, marking 10 years since Jack Dorsey sent the first public tweet out into the world with “just setting up my twttr”.
The 140-character micro-blogging site has firmly established itself as one of the go-to social media sites for businesses looking to engage and connect with customers. The Ipsos MRBI recently put together this information, which shows that 31% of Irish adults have a Twitter account, and 35% of those account owners use it daily.
No matter what type of business you are — from a large retailer to a small start-up — you can use Twitter to build meaningful connections with a relevant and engaged audience. Twitter is especially effective for creating brand awareness and driving people to your landing page, but it’s not enough for your Twitter strategy to consist of using hashtags and re-tweeting every now and again. You need to have a clear and concise plan mapped out to ensure that Twitter works effectively for you. Your Twitter strategy should address clear goals such as increasing brand awareness and boosting website traffic. Your efforts will pay off; Twitter reports that 60% of its users make purchases based on items they have seen on the social media site.
Here are some tips on how to get the most out of the Twittersphere.
If you are seeking new followers, then look at your content and examine how interesting it actually is. Twitter is best used by posting every day, especially given that tweets can last a minimum of 10 minutes on a feed, meaning that many consumers might miss your tweet. Businesses should think about content that ignites conversations and keeps their audience engaged.
- Ensure the content is short, clear and concise, and if needs be, link to an article or blog for further information.
- Use relevant hashtags. By strategically implementing hashtags, you can expand your content reach, target your market, and get your content found. If you want inspiration, it’s quick and easy to see what your competitors are doing hashtag-wise on Twitter. www.ritetag.com is a Twitter hashtag analysis, monitoring and analytics tool that helps you find the perfect hashtag choice.
- Use images and videos. People don’t engage equally with every Tweet, and ones with visuals are 34% more likely to get retweeted than tweets with no image, while video content can boost retweets by 28%. It’s important to use the Twitter photo tool to share photos to make sure they expand properly on different phones iPhones, computers etc, as opposed to using links.
- Engage, engage, engage. Without question, engagement is key on Twitter. By simply asking a question, you can interact effortlessly with you audience, whilst also gaining invaluable market research. Respond to any questions, comments, and criticisms that come your way, and if a customer has a more complex issue, switch to Direct Messages.
- Twitter also has this nifty poll creator, allowing users to pose questions to others on Twitter. It’s quick and easy to construct.
On your Twitter page, click on the ‘Compose New Tweet’ box
Then click on the ‘Add poll’ icon
Just type your question into the main box and indicate your first poll choice and second poll choice in the relevant boxes. If you want to add more, then click on ‘+ Add a choice’. You can have up to four options.
Then put in your poll time-frame, which can be up to seven days.
Lastly post your Tweet, and it’s there for everyone to see and interact with. See this example from Twitter Design.
ORGANISE YOUR FOLLOWS
Businesses need to be following customers, competitors, peers and suppliers. However, the more you follow, the more these important research tools can get lost. So it’s important to organise the people you follow into lists, splitting them between customers, those in your industry and so on. Take the @SpringboardPR Twitter page for example. There are two lists added, one for PR and Social Media contacts and the other for News outlets.
If you are a restaurant, offer a Twitter-only Special to customers; or incentivise followers to use your website by offering 20% off your products when they use a unique Twitter code. Businesses can also run competitions where followers are encouraged to follow your page, and retweet the post to be in with a chance of winning. (You can also use the famed emojis to express yourself, which help businesses stand out and encourage people to engage with you on Twitter). The Twitter post below by Leef UK makes good use of both the emoji and competition aspect.
Also, last year, the Rose of Tralee festival was at its most popular online because of innovative use on Twitter. Over 52,000 tweets were sent with the hashtag #RoseOfTralee, mainly due to the ‘Twitter mirror’, which allowed Roses to take selfies and post online.
The only way you will know if someone is linking onto your page using social media is by utilising Google Analytics to measure traffic. Twitter’s analytics tool is simple and straightforward to use and can also help you understand how the content you share on Twitter is impacting on your business.