Tag Archives: twitter

What are the Best Times to Post on Social Media?


Whether you’re posting in real time or scheduling your content in advance, social media marketing requires you to have good timing. Simply put, you need to post when your followers are actually going to see it if you want to get maximum engagement.

And that begs the question—when exactly are your social media followers most active and most engaged?

That depends a bit on your audience and your industry, but also on the social platform you’re using. Social platforms have their own unique audience behaviors, and the best time to post on Facebook is not necessarily the best time to post on Twitter.

Scheduling Your Social Media

The following pointers are all somewhat general, then, but definitely worth noting if you’re looking to lend your social media posts maximum impact:

Facebook: According to statistics, the best times to post on Facebook are Thursday and Friday, between 9 in the morning and 7 in the evening, with the early afternoon window (1-3) being optimal.

Pinterest: Unique among social networks, Pinterest has its own trending topic for each day of the week; Monday, for instance, is fitness-focused, Tuesday technology, and so on. The best time to post, then, is on whatever day best fits your content and your niche. Fitness trainers, make sure you’re pinning on Monday!

Twitter: There is some debate about when the best time is for tweeting, and really there is no bad time, except during the wee hours of the morning when no one is awake. Experiment with weekdays versus weekend posts to see which get more traction with your followers.

Instagram: Don’t ask us why, but many reports reveal Monday and Wednesday to be the ideal days for Instagram.

LinkedIn: For LinkedIn, aim for the middle of the week—Tuesday through Thursday—during normal business hours (9-5 or so).

Now, the caveat to all of this is that regular content updates are essential for branding consistency and user engagement—so while optimizing your timing is important, so is posting content throughout the week. Make note of these peak hours, and make sure you put some good stuff online then, but don’t let that be an excuse to post infrequently! Be judicious in your posts, but also generous.

For help crafting an editorial calendar that hits these peak times, contact Grammar Chic at www.grammarchic.net or 803-831-7444.

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The Twitter Dictionary: Common Terms Explained


A lot of our small business owner clients come to us rather sheepishly, asking us to explain some of the common terms and slang associated with Twitter. Truthfully, there’s no reason to feel sheepish about it: Twitter has its own vernacular, and getting hip to the lingo is one of the toughest parts about Twitter use.

Your time is probably better spent growing your business, strategizing, leading your team, and serving your customers; with that said, if you’re going to be using Twitter as a tool for business promotion and growth, it’s helpful to at least have a reference for some of the terminology. We’ll explain some of the most common Twitter terms here; if there’s one you don’t see here, don’t hesitate to ask us about it!

@mention. When you want to “tag” someone in a tweet—to talk to them directly—you include their username in your tweet, along with the @ sign. For example, if you want to talk to us on Twitter, include @GrammarChicInc somewhere in our post, and the tweet will show up in our “mentions.” We’ll also get a notification about it. Basically, this is how you have a conversation on Twitter.

#, or hashtag. The pound sign—on Twitter, we call it a hashtag—is used to transform a word or a term into a topic, lending greater searchability. For instance, if you have a tweet about soccer, you can tag it with #soccer, and when another user searches for soccer-related posts, yours will show up in the results. Hashtags are also used to align your posts with “trending” topics. Note that sparing hashtag use is recommended—somewhere between one and three per post.

DM. This stands for a direct message—basically, Twitter’s internal messaging tool. A direct message will be between you and just one other person, and will be private, which is what separates it from the public @mentions noted above.

Feed. As with Facebook, Twitter has its own Feed—basically, the timeline of tweets/posts you see when you log in.

#FF. This is one of the most common hashtags, and one all business owners should know about. It stands for Follow Friday, and it’s basically a thing people do every Friday to recommend other Twitter followers. For example, if you love the Grammar Chic account and want all your friends to see it, you might tweet: “For #FF today, I recommend the great tweets from @GrammarChicInc!”

Follower. A follower is anyone who signs on to see all your tweets in their feed. It’s like a Facebook friend, except not necessarily two-way; you can choose to follow someone, and that person may not choose to follow you.

HT: A “hat tip” is noted when you’re giving credit to someone else. For example, if you see a great article shared by the Grammar Chic account, you might share the link yourself but give us credit: “HT @GrammarChicInc.”

ICYMI: This common abbreviation stands for In Case You Missed It; basically, you use it to re-share something previously shared, for anyone who didn’t see it the first time.

IDK: Stands for “I Don’t Know.” This is what you tweet if someone asks you a question and you don’t have an answer.

IMO or IMHO: These stand for In My Opinion and In My Humble Opinion, respectively. What you’re saying here is, “Just my two cents.”

MT: If you’re sharing something from someone else, but modifying it a bit—likely to make it shorter/fall within that 140 character limit—you mark it as an MT, or Modified Tweet.

.@ mention: Note the period in front of the @. This is a modified version of an @ mention. The difference? A regular @ mention will be visible only to those who follow you and the person you’re mentioning. Putting the period ensures that everyone can see the tweet.

Reply: Is what it says it is: When you’re responding directly so someone else’s tweet, it’s a reply.

RT: Retweet—a tweet so good, someone decided to share it. This is the most important currency on Twitter, and what small business owners should be striving for!

#TBT: This hashtag stands for Throwback Thursday—a chance to post a “blast from the past” old photo or memory. Do it on Thursdays!

Troll: A troll is any Twitter user engaging in spammy or abusive behavior. Beware!

Trending topics: Anything that people are tweeting about a lot—headlines, celebrity news, big episodes of popular shows—may qualify as a trending topic.

Unfollow: Basically, the Twitter equivalent of unfriending someone on Facebook, or simply choosing not to see their tweets any more.

We hope that helps—but remember: If you have any further questions, we’re around: 803-831-7444, or www.grammarchic.net.

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Get More Out of Your Hashtags


Spend any kind of time on social media and you will quickly become familiar with some of the most basic, common hashtags. Consider #tbt, #wcw, #selfie, #sorrynotsorry—all of these trendy tags represent cross-cultural idioms that immediately position a tweet, a Facebook post, or an Instagram image within a larger conversational context.

As a small business owner, you should absolutely be using these hashtags to leverage these popular trends; they’re a great way to get your content noticed and appreciated. With that said, the common nature of these hashtags is their downfall as well as their saving grace: While they can prove helpful in generating engagement, they also do little to help your brand stand out from the crowd.

That’s what makes it advantageous to develop some of your own, customized hashtags—some little taglines or catchphrases that you “own” and that speak directly to your brand. These ultimately help create a brand identity that is specific rather than generic, and they reveal the true creativity behind your content marketing efforts.

Of course it is important to be thoughtful in creating your custom hashtags. To help get your creative juices flowing, we have three dos and one don’t for custom hashtagging.

  1. DO add your name to your hashtags. If you want a hashtag that immediately points back to your brand, there is no better way to achieve it than by inserting your name into the hashtag. For example, Grammar Chic, Inc. has a client named Kip, and on Twitter we position some of his insights and sayings with the #tipsfromkip hashtag.
  2. DO be funny, where appropriate. Hashtags present a great avenue for humor, even if you’re essentially making up words or concepts. We know of one company that sells steaks and ribs, and it tags many of its posts with the clever, defiant-sounding #unvegan hashtag.
  3. DO offer immediate value. Sometimes the best hashtags aren’t necessarily clever; they just offer something beneficial, something readers will immediately zero in on as value-adding. We work with a home improvement company that often does hashtag series such as #Roofing101 or #RemodelingMadeSimple, and these posts tend to get a lot of shares and favorites.
  4. DON’’T leave your hashtags too open-ended. A final warning: Don’t leave your hashtags open to hijackers. We all know the story of McDonald’s and its ill-fated #McDStories campaign. Customers were supposed to share positive memories from McDonald’s, but instead shared tweets about getting food poisoning and the like. Make sure you maintain some level of control over your hashtags.

Want our creative team to help you brainstorm some unique hashtags? Just give us a call at 803-831-7444, or visit www.grammarchic.net today!



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Make the Most of Your Twitter Bio


Here’s a quick exercise for business owners: Tell us what your company is, what it does, and what value it offers to the consumer. And oh yeah: Keep it to 160 characters or less.

Of course, this exercise is not at all hypothetical. It’s the very real challenge that faces business owners as they strive to write perfectly pithy, powerful Twitter bios. When someone stumbles across your Twitter page, or you come up in a Twitter search, your bio is what’s going to pull them in, what’s going to convey your company’s vision and values, and what’s ultimately going to establish what your Twitter feed is all about.

That’s a tall order for just 160 characters.

Yet, coming up with a powerful Twitter bio is not an impossible task. Here are a few tips for making the most out of those scant 160 characters.

  • Focus on the nuts and bolts—on memorable and specific nouns and verbs. You don’t want to waste time with connecting words or prepositions if you don’t have to. For example, don’t say something like Ace Plumbing is a full-service plumbing and drain cleaning company. Make it more like this: Ace Plumbing: Plumbing. Drain Cleaning. Emergency Services. Septic Services. And so on.
  • Make sure the bio aligns with your posts. If yours is an HOA management company but you’re using your tweets to share basic homeowner tips, your bio should reflect that. Make it something about how you try to make things easier for homeowners and communities.
  • If at all possible, use your Twitter bio to link to other relevant content. What does somebody do if they want to read more about you? Hopefully, they can click over to your blog, company website, or About Us page to get more than 160 characters of information!
  • Use the full space you’re allotted. Brevity is nice, but if you’re only using 35 characters then you’re simply giving up prime online real estate.
  • Make sure to incorporate some basic keywords and phrases that relate to your industry. What are the primary search terms people use to find your company website? Those are likely good phrases to include in the bio.
  • Remember that your Twitter bio is not meant to be static! Spruce it up from time to time. Play with different wordings. Change the bio every few months.

Sure: Your Twitter bio is just going to be a line or two. But there’s no reason why you shouldn’t make those lines count. To learn more, contact Grammar Chic, Inc. today. Call 803-831-7444, or visit http://www.grammarchic.net.

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Three Ways to Boost Your Twitter Engagement Today


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.

Offer Exclusivity

“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!

Create Offers

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.

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How Twitter Can Help You Land Your Dream Job


When Twitter first came about, many people saw the micro blogging site as the definition of “TMI.” Twitter users could quickly tap out an update about anything and everything. While some people used it to share links to intriguing news stories, others were using it to do a play-by-play of their day.

“Waiting for my sandwich at the deli.”

“Ugh, so rainy out today.”

While some people still use Twitter as a way to detail their every thought, many others have relied on the site to improve their own job search.  When I lead resume webinars, I’m frequently met with questions about social media’s role in the job hunt. In years past, it was thought that making your Facebook and Twitter pages virtually invisible to hiring managers was the safest way to go. Now I advise job seekers to use these tools with care. Making proper use of social media can actually help to make you more appealing to a recruiter. Here are some ways to effectively use Twitter during your job hunt:

Showcase your professional abilities and interests

Yes, Twitter is fun if you want to offer a few witty thoughts on the latest episode of your favorite TV show, but the site is more three-dimensional than that. It can also help you to extend your professional brand. When you join Twitter, think carefully about how you want to approach the site. If you’re looking to network or to make yourself more visible online, you’ll want to make sure your tweets relate to topics in your chosen industry. Use your bio section to include a clear description about who you are and what you do, and then link to your portfolio.

This doesn’t mean that you can never use Twitter merely for mindless entertainment. If you want to tweet about your dining experience at a local restaurant, that’s fine. Just create a personal Twitter account in addition to your professional one. Keep the two separate, but make sure neither contains any questionable postings.

Actively contribute

Tweets don’t just have to be about that funny thing your cat did. Smart professionals use Twitter to generate compelling, attention-grabbing content. Find a news article that you find particularly relevant to your field, then tweet out a link and your take on the piece. Soon, users will look to you for news and insights on the field. This may earn you the attention of a company with a job opportunity.

Seek out mentors

Though reaching out to strangers on Twitter may feel scary, the site makes it easy to build relationships with potential mentors. Regardless of status, anyone appreciates a genuine compliment about his or her work. If you admire the portfolio of someone in your industry, send him or her a message telling him or her so. It may lead to a mutually beneficial professional relationship.

Get connected

One of the best parts about Twitter is that it enables job seekers to connect directly with the organizations they admire the most. If you’ve always had your eye on working for a particular company, start following this organization. If they tweet out something you find interesting, write them a response. You may begin to engage in a dialogue with the brand, thus helping you to stand out should you choose to submit your resume to a job opening there.

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.

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Twitter: How to Use this Powerful Marketing Tool Effectively and Create Eye-popping Tweets


Though Twitter encourages content creators to get their point across in 140 characters or less, this doesn’t mean that tweets have to lack information. In fact, a well-crafted tweet can grab a reader’s attention and get them clicking on an important link or story.

While it should theoretically feel easier to write a message when you only have so much space, in many ways this task proves difficult.  If you go over the 140-character limit, your message will get truncated. To avoid this, the author must get the point across in a short yet clear way. To craft a tweet that will stand out in a near-constant stream of updates, here are some thoughts:

Rewrite your message with Twitter in mind

You know what you want to say, but now it’s about condensing that thought so it’s appropriate for Twitter. For those who are not natural editors, this is often a difficult task. It’s important to preserve the root of the message, without going over your character limit. This may mean getting creative when it comes to cutting out unnecessary words.

Find an alternative way to say the same thing

While your original tweet may put you far over the character limit, there’s probably a way to get the same message across using less characters. Can you use other words or insert contractions in order to make the tweet 140 characters or less? Find shorter synonyms whenever possible, but as you do this, make sure that the replacement word conveys the proper meaning of what you’re trying to say.

Stay away from abbreviations

While some abbreviations are perfectly acceptable in text messages, when tweeting from a business account you should stay away from using online slang such as “lol” and “brb.” While these terms are commonly understood, they’re not professional and can make your company look unprofessional.

Use the active voice

The active voice is more pleasant to read, and also frequently uses less characters than the passive voice. Try to write in the active voice whenever you’re composing a tweet.

Don’t feel afraid about hash tags

Hash tags are useful when you’re trying to get your point across in a brief way. They can replace lengthy words and phrases to help you create a tweet that makes sense but is still less than 140 characters. Don’t shy away from using hash tags as you go about crafting the perfect Twitter message.

If you’re feeling uncertain about how to get your business’s message across using social media platforms like Twitter, feel free to contact Grammar Chic, Inc. for some professional advice and pointers. Our team is able to provide guidance about how to utilize your business’s Twitter account to speak directly to your target audience and get the most out of this great marketing tool.

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Tweet Your Way to Better Business: The Secret of the Hashtags, Part II

Last week we discussed Twitter—specifically, Twitter as a tool for business promotion and brand management, not Twitter as a platform to ramble on and on about whatever you ate for breakfast this morning. Remember: Twitter is what you make of it. Approach it without vision or discretion and it’s only going to generate useless noise. Approach it with foresight, however, and you can really use it to your company’s advantage.

And hashtags are a great way to do that. Last week’s blog was all about selectively and effectively using pre-existing hashtags, and, if you’ll remember, my comments emphasized the importance of discretion—of using only the hashtags that really fit your business and its goals. But what do you do when there isn’t a hashtag that fits the bill? Simple: You make your own.

Easy, right? Well, yes and no. Of course, the simple act of creating a hashtag is a breeze—you just put the # character in front of a word. If you can’t handle that, I might suggest that Twitter isn’t for you. But creating a hashtag that will actually benefit your company and function as a useful brand management tool? That takes just a bit more finesse.

The first step is picking the word itself. Remember, the hashtag you use needs to be something that fits with your business. It also needs to be something that other Twitterers can easily use in their tweets. The whole point of this is to generate a sense of community, after all, by creating a memorable “trend” on Twitter—so make sure your hashtag is something that’s pretty easy to spell. You might also want to make it short. As a Twitter user, I will personally attest to the fact that, when a hashtag eats up half of your 140 characters, it’s usually way more frustrating than it’s worth.

Once you’ve settled on a good hashtag, just start using the thing. Attach it to your tweets, but remember to make those tweets pertinent. Don’t throw around your hashtags like spam; say something substantive in each tweet. And make it worth your followers’ while to use the hashtag themselves. For instance, let’s say you own a lawn equipment store. You could ask your followers what their favorite lawn maintenance activity is, and have them tag their answers with #lawnfavorites. Maybe offer a door prize of some sort for one lucky participant?

The idea, of course, is that using hashtags like this will help you cultivate a sort of community among your Twitter-savvy clients—keeping your name in front of them and keeping them interested in what you’re doing. As always, I should also note that Grammar Chic, Inc. offers superior services in brand management campaigns just like this, and that investing in said services could ultimately help your business convert Twitter followers into sales prospects.

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Tweet Your Way to Better Business: The Secret of the Hashtags, Part I

I love my Twitter feed. My dad doesn’t get it, though. He once told me that he wasn’t on Twitter because he’s not interested in hearing what so-and-so had for breakfast today. Fair enough—I’m not particularly keen on hearing that kind of thing, either. But my solution isn’t to avoid Twitter; it’s to only follow people with interesting or insightful Twitter accounts—be they musicians, politicians, comedians, pastors, artists, bloggers, or what have you.

That’s the thing that non-Twitter users are missing out on. Twitter is what you make of it. I’m sure it’s possible to have a Twitter experience that’s an absolute bore—but if that’s the boat you’re in, it’s probably the result of how you’ve chosen to use Twitter, not something that’s inherent to the social networking site itself. And if that’s true in personal Twitter use, I’m inclined to say it’s equally true in professional Twitter use. If you create a Twitter account for your business and assume it’s not going to amount to anything lucrative, well, it probably won’t. But an open mind and an enterprising, imaginative spirit can turn Twitter into an excellent tool for generating and cultivating business.

One of the best ways to use a corporate Twitter account is to utilize hashtags. Even a novice Twitterer knows about hashtags, but for the uninitiated, here’s a crash course. A hashtag is created when you attach a hash symbol (#) to the front of a word—for example, a hashtag for the topic of my home state would be #Tennessee, and my favorite minor league baseball team would be #CharlotteKnights. Grammar Chic tweets might come adorned with #CharlotteWriting or #EditingService. Using a hashtag creates a sort of searchable database, a catalog of posts that all address the same topic. It makes it easy for Twitter users to locate tweets that are about the same thing.

You can employ existing hashtags to help make your business Twitter account an effective brand management tool—in fact, you’d be foolish not to. For one thing, hashtags tend to spread pretty quickly; at any given moment, several of the “trending topics” on Twitter are bound to be hashtag phrases. Moreover, a lot of users will use hashtags to search for information. Using hashtags to your advantage is a great way to extend your reach and get your name or brand in front of people.

So which hashtags should you use? Well, obviously, that depends on exactly what your business is. You want to make sure to pick hashtags that are relevant; a #JustinBieber hashtag is probably not a great option for, say, a law firm. (Unless the Beib is one of your clients, I suppose.) But then, one of the most enduringly popular hashtags is #tastytuesday, where folks tweet all about food. If you own a restaurant or a food service company, you ought to jump on that one. Search for the hashtags that might relate to your business and try to get your name out there into the fray.

You might think in particular about using a site that gauges the most popular and effective hashtags. One of them is twubs.com, a full directory of useful and effective hashtags. Another is whatthetrend.com, which evaluates the effectiveness of “trending” hashtags. Both of these references are indispensable for business-grade Twitterers seeking to use social networking as a means for brand management.

Let me give one word of caution, though: Make sure you don’t turn your company Twitter account into a spam generator. Following the proper Twitter etiquette is essential for ensuring that you maintain followers—and if you don’t have followers, the whole thing is moot. So don’t ever attach “trending” hashtags to tweets that are totally off-topic, and don’t attach random hashtags to tweets in which the content is unrelated.

Of course, if you can’t find an existing hashtag that meets your business needs, you can always create your own—but that’s a whole different topic for a whole different blog post. Tune in next week for a discussion of how you might create a perfect, brand new hashtag to suit your business needs. For now: It warrants a mention that Grammar Chic, Inc. offers professional service in brand management and social media integration—which means, in essence, that we can help do remarkable things with your Twitter account, helping you use it to truly grow and cultivate your business.

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