Is it really possible for a company to positively brand itself—to bring in customers, to boost its bottom line—in just 140 characters? Skeptical business owners have been asking that question since the day Twitter debuted, and for many, answers have proven hard to come by. There are countless marketing blogs out there, telling small business owners that they need to start tweeting today or else face extinction—but when business owners actually start using Twitter, it can seem frustrating. In fact, for many, it can seem suspiciously like a waste of time and resources.
And to be sure: Twitter is not something that is going to revolutionize a business overnight. With that said, doing Twitter right can increase customer loyalty, promote products and services, and ultimately establish your company’s online presence as a vital and vibrant one. Below, we have offered three practical, specific solutions for getting the most out of Twitter today.
“Why am I following this company on Twitter, again?” This is not a question that you ever want your Twitter followers to be asking, and if they do ask it, you want the answer to be immediate and obvious. As such, you need to make it clear with your daily Twitter activity that you are offering exclusive value. If you are simply parroting what’s on your company website, then there is really no reason why anyone would need to follow your tweets.
Instead, make your Twitter followers feel like they are getting something that they wouldn’t get otherwise—that they are a part of a small, secret community (even if your Twitter followers number in the dozens, the hundreds, or the thousands). Offer some behind-the-scenes photos or videos in your tweets. Use unique hashtags– #GrammarChicLife, or something like that—to provide some “day in the life” glimpses to your followers. Make it worth their while to read your tweets.
Call to Action
Remember, also, that a good tweet functions as a kind of call to action. This generally means including some brief, action-oriented text, followed by the link you want users to click on—a link to your main website, a blog entry, a survey, or a product order page. As with any call to action, the key is to keep it uncluttered. Hashtags and mentions only distract from the one thing you really want people to click on, which is the link itself—so, keep your call-to-action tweets nice and clean!
While the rule of thumb with Twitter is to use it to inform and engage rather than to promote, much good can come from creating special Twitter offers. Some companies do a kind of “Happy Hour,” providing a discount code to their Twitter followers that is only good for two hours or so. (Indeed, saying something like “50 percent off to all orders placed in the next hour” not only gives customers a sense of urgency, but it also makes it clear to them that they are benefiting from following your tweets.) An alternative is to say something like this: “If 50 people re-tweet this, we will offer a 10 percent off promotion for the rest of the week.” Now that’s a way to drive Twitter engagement!
The bottom line is that Twitter success takes some strategy and finesse—but with those qualities in place, it can prove a vital business-builder for your small company.
The team at Grammar Chic specializes in a variety of professional writing and editing services. For more information about how we can help you, visit www.grammarchic.net or call 803-831-7444. We also invite you to follow us on Twitter @GrammarChicInc for the latest in writing and editing tips and to give a “like” to our Facebook page. Text GRAMMARCHIC to 22828 for a special offer.