Twitter: How to Use it Effectively

Twitter, like all other social platforms can be used effectively for marketing a brand but you need to know the basics and follow the rules of the community if you want to succeed. There are some great basic tips for building a following on Twitter and natually like anything esle, the more visibility you have to your profile, the more doors it can open. The foundation of all of this though is that you must start by respecting the community and adding value. Here some tips to help you get started:

  1. Create a good profile:  Treat your profile like you would on any other social platform.  The more robust your profile is the more likely people will be to follow you.  They need to see value in following you and the first step towards building that trust is through your profile.  There are many great tools to use when customizing your page.  The more information you have laid out of a creative way, the more enticing it will be for people to follow you.  Keep this in mind because in a bit we will talk about driving traffic to your profile page.
  2. Inegrate your brand or blog into your profile:  This is done when customizing your page.
  3. Start following people:  Natually the first thing you need to do is start following people.  Find peole that are relevant to your interests and people that have strong followings themselves.  Once you gather a good list of people you are following you can send them direct messages and ask them to follow you.  Include a small value proposition and tell them why you want them to follow you.
  4. Follow people that follow you:  This falls under the category of Twitter etiquette.  The general rule is that you should follow people that follow you.  Later you can go through and orgainze your lists for optimial value and impact.
  5. Offer value:  When people start following you they will not want to just see blatant promotions and obvious commercial offeerings.  Like any other social network you need to engage in discussions and offer advice, tips, value, and just simply be engaged in what people are Tweeting about.
  6. Two way attention is important:  This is the part that takes some time.  You really should try to be conversational with people that you follow and that are following you. 
  7. Drive traffic to your profile page:  It doesn’t really matter what you Tweet or how you use Twitter.  It is more about who you are.  Once you have a nicely customized profile page start sending traffic to it.  You can do this through email signatures, blogs, running contests, using Twitter as a customer service tool, etc.  There are many creative ways to do this just like you would drive traffic to any web page.

Things to keep in mind:

  • You can only follow up to 2000 people until you yourself have 2000 followers.  Then you can follow more people.
  • There are great tools out there that can help you optimize your efforts, espcially if you are using Twitter as a social media marketing platform.

Tools:

  • Socialtoo.com:  this is a tool that is set up to send customized messages to people once they start following you.
  • TwitterKarma.com:  this tool helps you orgainze your following and people you follow.  You can view all the people that you follow but that do not follow you back.  If they are not following you and did not respond to any direct messages then you can “mass” unfollow them and open up more room for following new people.
  • TweetDeck.com:  this tool acts like a master control panel where you can manage your entire Twitter account.  Twitter is coming out with their own version soon.

Using Twitter for social media marketing:

All the same principles apply.  For example, a social media Internet marketing company would set up a profile for a client and then start driving traffic to that profile through many channels including their own website (the client’s).  They would build a following and start offering great value to the community.  Gradually the Internet marketing company would include some special offers, or maybe run contests or other creative promotional offerings.  The better the follow is the more responses you will get.  Like all online marketing efforts the message must be consistent and good landing pages should be used to optimize conversions.

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