Is Twitter a waste of time as an effective business marketing tool?
It’s easy to feel that way because let’s admit it, it’s hard to get a genuine engagement on Twitter unless you are already a big name.
Many users follow you just because they want you to follow them. They like your tweet only because they want to get your attention hoping you will follow them.
But wait… some of them might be really interested in you even though it looks like they are in an industry that has nothing to do with you. You really think so?
You never know. That’s the kind of game going on there.
Many people “like” your tweet even without clicking the link, so what does that tell you?
So, you have to take a good hard look at what you are doing and put in some work before coming to that conclusion that it’s not worth it.
The fact of the matter is, not just Twitter but also the Internet in general is bombarded with way more information than we can consume, so you need to know it’s going to take extra effort to get noticed.
With our attention span getting shorter than that of goldfish, it takes quite a bit of effort to get clicks on Twitter.
Before getting into do’s and don’ts, let’s go over the basics: hashtag. Just by using hashtags, your tweet is going to be on the radar of people looking for the same information.
What is hashtag?
I didn’t know what a hashtag was when they started to become a big thing a few years back. It was only when I started using Twitter that I learned how to use it.
If you are wondering, a hashtag is like a text link on social media. Using a hashtag, your tweet also shows up on the public feed, which means other people who are also looking for information on that topic will be able to find your tweet.
You can also search trending topics with hashtags. If you type # + that keyword in a search bar, you will see all the tweets of users who used that hashtag.
Just make sure to leave no space between words even they are two different words. For example, you may be looking for information related to blogging tips for beginners.
Looks like #newbieblogger is a popular hashtag.
Find popular hashtags with Hashtagify.
Hashtags are important part of Twitter but they can also be misused
Let’s start from Don’ts followed by Dos so it will end on a positive note.
Twitter Marketing for a Small Business | Do’s and Don’ts
Don’ts of Twitter Marketing for a Small Business
1. Too many hashtags
Too many hashtags make it hard to read and someone reading your tweet may fail to see the URL as the texts are the same color. If you want people to click the URL, ideally you separate hashtags and URL.
Get creative and use a hashtag inside the message so that you can separate a hashtag and URL.
If you want to become a #blogger, you want to check out this site.
2. Use Popular Hashtags Just to Get Attention
Some people use hashtags for wrong purposes. For example, at a time when Apple rolls out new iPhones, some people try to use hashtags related to Apple and iPhone even if your profile is not relevant. It can be anything from celebrities, sports events, trend or anything else.
3. Use Irelevant Keywords in the Profile Just to Get Attention
Along the same line, someone would use popular keywords or name of celebrities, famous athletes or events so that your profile will come up on search results.
Even if you are not doing it intentionally, someone else might see it that way. You never know.
4. Follow and Unfollow
Guys who do this are such a fraud and I just can’t believe it. It’s like they are looking at you like a commodity.
Whether on Twitter or any other social media, we all want many followers. Having many followers put you on a higher status and especially, having more followers than the number of people you follow makes it look like you are famous or influential figure.
So, a lot of guys use this tactic of following as many people as possible – as mostly people are happy when someone follows you – and probably they will follow you right back.
And after a while, just when they forgot about you, they unfollow you. You do this every day for a while and the number of your follower will look much bigger than the number of people you follow.
Some people do this following and unfollowing thing manually but there are also bots that do this automatically for you.
5. Sending Automated DM (direct message)
Some people would argue that’s what businesses do and that’s understandable but I don’t want to see a message promoting products or services when I don’t even know who they are.
From their perspective they might get a lot of clicks but just the number of clicks doesn’t tell a story. I am sure there are more people who are annoyed than the ones who are happy to have received a DM.
I would say sending a message just thanking someone who followed you might be not as bad even if it’s automated.
But using a thanks for following message as a way to subtly promote their service is flat out annoying. I would immediately unfollow when this happens.
Do’s of Twitter Marketing for a Small Business
Do something positive that will not only help your reputation but also help others achieve their business goals.
1. Optimize Your Profile
Be concise and tell people what you do or what your business is about. Use appropriate keywords.
2. Eye-catching Header Image
Your profile may be important, but sometimes your header image could speak more volume than the profile because it occupies much larger real estate.
A good header image can be an attention grabber. You could put important information on the header image with texts and people can tell what you do even without checking your profile.
Sometimes I see a blurry or jagged photo, which makes me feel the person doesn’t even bother to just take a few minutes to edit or choose a nice photo.
Header Image Size 1500 x 500 pxl
3. Use a Perfect Image Size when Tweeting
As you can see, the post image size is 2:1 ratio, so you want to choose an image carefully. Otherwise the image gets cropped.
Post Image Size
- Minimum 440 x 220 pxl
- Maximum when expanded 1024 x 512 pixels
- Adjusted to 506 x 253 pixels in stream on desktop
4. Know Your Target Audience
What kind of audience are you trying to target? If you are unsure about this part, you will not be able to deliver clear messages.
You follow someone whose interest may not be quite the same and they will lose interest in you.
5. Write an Irresistible Tweet
Just like you need a good headline to get people to visit your blog, you need to write a simple, attention grabbing tweet. Make people anticipate and wonder what you have on your website.
6. Tweet at the Right Time
Once you set your target audience, you can take a good guess at what the typical days of their daily lives would look like.
Unless you have a large number of followers, your engagement comes only right after you’ve tweeted, as the life span of a tweet is said to be 18-24 minutes. So, tweet around the time your tweet gets the maximum exposure.
If you are a restaurant owner in a busy office area in the city, before lunch time may be the perfect time to tweet but you really don’t know. So, tweet at a different time and experiment.
7. Use Automation Tools for Good Reasons
If you want to reach out to people in different time zones, automation tools like Buffer and Hootsuite are perfect. You schedule your posting ahead of time and it will be tweeted automatically.
8. Support Your Peers
We are all busy but you want to help each other out to achieve their business goals. You don’t just tweet about your own stuff. Retweet, like and leave a comment on your followers’ tweets.
It takes some time and experimenting to get meaningful engagement on Twitter. So, you want to constantly analyze and tweak your strategy to get good engagement.