For many businesses, Twitter is an underutilized asset. Companies lacking strategic, lead-generating plans for Twitter miss the opportunity to access a huge user base and to showcase themselves in a socially savvy and relevant way.
Users who elect to follow your company on Twitter demonstrate an active interest in your brand, what your company does, has to say, and what it will continue to do. To retain this high level of user engagement, it’s necessary to maintain an active brand presence on Twitter with:
The Appropriate Twitter Handle
The Twitter handle is the name that users will use to address and talk about your company. When a user directly tweets your company, they attach your handle to an “@” symbol and send it your way. Encourage users to contact you more frequently and talk more about your company with a short handle that doesn’t use too much of the capped 140 characters of a tweet.
A Succinct and Informative Bio
In 160 characters, succinctly describe your company, its products and services, and its relevance. Would a potential client find your company’s bio interesting, informative, or purely self-promotional?
As an example, Virgin America uses its bio to link to its blog and website and provides a link to fliers who want to complain about services (potentially avoiding publicly tweeted complaints):
An Evocative Photo
This image shows Twitter followers who you are. For brands this is often a logo. This image sits next to your tweets so other users can visually identify you as the source. See Oreo below.
Profile Picture Size: Recommended dimensions are 400×400 pixels
A Header Image
This is a background photo that sits behind your profile photo. Most images are resized to automatically fit the dimensions, but Twitter also offers the image parameters on their website. This is the opportunity for you to be creative and share an image that expresses your brand, campaign, or any other relevant visuals in a larger format.
The Patagonia header for example is publicizing a campaign they currently have running. Note the use of the hashtag #KeepJumboWild in the header.
Profile Header Size: recommended dimensions are 1500×500 pixels
Build Your Following
Building your following on Twitter is one of the key activities to driving success on this social network. There are a variety of techniques marketers can use to build their following, and here are 7 tips to make your tweets more searchable, shareable, and readable on Twitter:
Use a URL Shortener
You only have 140 characters, so using a URL shortener like Bit.ly or the shorteners built into social media platforms like Hootsuite are vital to getting more of your message into your tweet.
Keep Your Tweets Concise
Hitting your maximum character count happens, but leaving some space for your followers to add their thoughts when they retweet is ideal. Try to keep your tweet to around 100 characters.
Use Hashtags (#)
These symbols have become synonymous with Twitter and are used to tag tweets by topic.
The hashtag allows you to follow the discussion and easily participate in it. For example, Gary Vaynerchuck (@garyvee) built a whole campaign in 2015 around the hashtag #AskGaryVee:
@mentions are a way for you to engage other Twitter users in your tweet. If you’re posting a tweet that you think is relevant to specific followers or thought leaders, tag them at the end of your tweet with a @mention as this will call their attention to your tweet and possibly the attention of their followers.
For example, Zack Wenger put together this video that featured Mark Cuban. Wenger only has 1,000 followers, but by mentioning @mcuban in his tweet, he brought it to Cuban’s attention. Cuban retweeted it, making his own 4.3m followers aware of it, not just Wenger’s 1,000.
Your social presence should help connect you with your target audience in a thoughtful and meaningful way—i.e. share content and craft messages of value, like Darren Rowse’s post below:
When leveraging Twitter to update the marketplace on company news and disseminate brand messaging, your social presence could be negatively impacted if used only as an advertising tool.
Quality, Not Quantity
When it comes to followers, companies often get caught up in the numbers game. But it’s important to remember that the quality of followers is just as—if not more—important as quantity.
Columbia Business School Professor Olivier Toubia sums this point up nicely in a conversation with Business News Daily:
“You could have a company with 10,000 followers, but half of them are not even real or not even relevant to your company. This will make your CEO feel good because they feel they have a big footprint on social media, but there isn’t really a lot of impact because they either aren’t real people or they are people who don’t care about your company.”
This is especially relevant for B2B companies offering niche services to a specific subset of clientele.
Twitter is a perfect medium to re-share content. As Danny Sullivan, founding editor of Marketingland said:
Twitter is the “live TV of social media…which means that if you’re not tuned in to catch a particular tweet live, then you’ve missed it.”
Let’s say you share an article on a Monday morning. Consider sharing it again on Tuesday afternoon prefacing the new tweet with a qualifier like, “in case you missed it.”
What are you missing on Twitter? Do you have a large following truly interested in your posts? Are you succinctly expressing relevant and engaging text? And is the platform connecting you with your fans and connecting them with your goals?
Let us help you use Twitter to your advantage. Contact us today to effectively tweet for more quality followers, greater sales, and greater visibility!