Studies have shown that 72 percent of Twitter users are more likely to buy services from a business they follow than from one they do not. However, with only 140 characters to make an impression, Twitter requires a great deal of skill to establish your company as an industry leader.
Here are 15 tips to leverage Twitter:
- Develop optimized content. You need content that you can tweet on a regular basis. Start by using snippets from company news, tips from a spokesperson, or material from keyword-rich blog posts.
- Twitter users search the site for topics that interest them. For example, sports fans search for their teams (#GreenBayPackers) or favorite sports (#basketball), while others may search #yoga. Use hashtags in your tweet so that it comes up when your prospective customers search.
- Create a custom hashtag. Develop a hashtag that you use every time you tweet. For example, CEO of Smith Widgets James Smith hashtags #smithsayings every time he posts a clever piece of business inspiration.
- Integrate cross channel marketing. Twitter is a great social media platform but combining it with an Instagram account makes it even more powerful. Post photos on Instagram, and then tweet them. This is especially effective for promotions and giveaways.
- Increase tweet frequency. Twitter is ineffective if it’s only used once a day. You must tweet multiple times a day, especially during peak hours. The more your followers see you, the more followers you’ll get. You can use TweetDeck or Buffer to schedule multiple tweets so you don’t have to sit at your computer all day.
- Retweet, retweet, retweet. Twitter isn’t a one-sided promotional tool. You need to interact with your followers. Read what they’re tweeting about and re-tweet when something sounds interesting. Your followers will like the fact that you did that and will take more interest in what you have to say.
- Share nuggets of wisdom. When you attend industry conferences, take the time to share what you learned. Live tweeting from important events is very popular among Twitter users and is a great way to share the latest industry trends.
- Tap into trends. On the left side of your Twitter page, you’ll see what’s currently trending nationally and in your area (you can set this up). Ride the coattails of a trend by hashtagging it in your tweet. For example, on #cookieday, a physician could tweet, “Today is #cookieday. Replace ingredients with fat-free substitutes to make cookies healthier.”
- Be inspirational. Twitter followers love to favorite and retweet inspirational quotes, so include a few during the week.
- Be visual. Twitter users are a visual bunch. They love to look at and retweet visual content, so include high-resolution photos and videos with your tweets.
- Respond. When someone in your industry is quoted in a tweet, respond to it. Congratulate them or discuss an important topic. Get your name in front of influencers in your target industry.
- Create Twitter lists. Twitter allows you to create “lists” of people. It’s a great way to monitor your peers, competitors, media and influencers.
- Tip it. Twitter users love tips, so turn your posts into some DIY or DYK (did you know) tips a few times per week. For example, physicians can provide weight loss tips, entrepreneurs can provide business tips, and filmmakers can provide did you know tweets about films and televisions shows.
- Question it. Get a discussion going. For example, a young adult author might ask what followers think about a controversial debut novel of another author, while a physician might discuss the latest medical study. A CEO might spark conversation about new business tax laws and an up-and-coming recording artist might discuss the latest Taylor Swift video.
- Go further. Set up a live Twitter chat with your followers. Here they can ask you questions, get advice, or discuss an important topic with you. You can cross promote the transcript on your blog, company website, Facebook page and Instagram.
Bonus tip: Want to use Twitter to get press hits? One of the best ways to get a journalist to read your pitches is to engage with them on Twitter. Take a vested interest in what they write and re-tweet content that you find useful. Use social media to research the beat they cover before you pitch them.
PR tip of the day: Look for journalists’ queries in real time by searching for #journorequest.
Kris Ruby is the CEO of Ruby Media Group, a Public Relations and Social Media Agency. Kris Ruby is a frequent on air TV commentator and speaks on social media, tech trends and crisis communications. For more information, visit www.rubymediagroup.com or www.krisruby.com