There’s a lot you can do to enhance your business in 140 characters or less. To learn more about how to creatively use Twitter for your business, check out this handy getting started guide.
The rise of social platforms, like Twitter, have made it a necessity for small business owners to rethink their marketing strategies and consider how social media fits into their overall business plan. However, according to a recent report from eMarketer, just 24 percent of small businesses have included social media in a structured way into their businesses. If you’ve been struggling to find the balance between tweeting with personal objectives in mind vs. business ones, check out these creative strategies to learn how you can put Twitter to work for your online business.
Use rewards for retweets
Reward programs are popular amongst consumers, and the businesses that do them well (airlines, banks, retail stores) benefit from repeat shoppers and loyal customers in the long run. Twitter enables you to build a social rewards program of your own, by keeping track of loyal customers that retweet your brand through “Lists”. By using Twitter’s built-in list functionality, you can create up to 20 segments of people you follow. Create a list for your most active customers and those who engage with you regularly on Twitter. Reward these users by retweeting their content, sending them exclusive information or writing them a handwritten note just to thank them for being a loyal follower of your brand on Twitter.
Make it visual
Pictures speak louder than words, and with Twitter, you can now take your tweets beyond text only. Include photos and videos as a part of your new product launch strategy, or give your loyal Twitter followers a sneak peak to a new print you plan to roll out for a particular product. Check out how athletic retailer Lululemon introduces their latest Paddington Softshell coat and receives real-time feedback from its customers on Twitter. Video is a great way to capture the feeling you want your customers to have when using your product, and as an added bonus, your Twitter followers may choose to retweet the video to their followers for extra marketing love.
In addition to sharing images and videos, remember to share each of your content pieces to build authority. Publishing platforms like Scribd and Slideshare are excellent for posting and sharing documents and presentations.
Create your Twitter Rolodex
Twitter is an excellent place to find and connect with influencers in your industry. The goal of networking is a common one when using Twitter for personal reasons, and extending it to your business strategy helps you form relationships with key players in your space. For example, if you sell baby products through your online store, you may want to connect with moms via Twitter and position how your products relate to needs they may have. Or, you could choose to partner with organizations or publications that may be interested in featuring your products. Think of Twitter as your online Rolodex that can be organized to your business’ advantage. By using Twitter search directories like Twellow, you can find influencers in your space and reach out to them. You can also create your own profile and add categories so others can find you and your business.
Also, consider participating in Tweetups and Twitter discussions to network with people who interest you, and strengthen your existing relationships by introducing people over Twitter.
Set a goal
One of the biggest challenges in using Twitter is finding something to say, everyday. Avoid using Twitter only when you have a big announcement, and remember to treat it as a daily conversation instead of a platform to share big news only. Remember that you have a digital library of tweets to choose from when it comes to sharing news, and you don’t have to use your exclusive content every time. In fact, retweeting others can be one of your best strategies in building relationships with other influencers and developing your own expertise. If you’re new to using Twitter for business, set a goal of tweeting at least once a day. It sounds easy, but the challenge is finding something to say each day, and not missing a beat. Choose to share news happening in your industry, stats about your business and show some love to your followers by retweeting their shares. With tools like Hootsuite, you can schedule your tweets ahead of time, as it’s convenient to your day.
That wraps up our post on finding creative strategies to implement Twitter into your online business strategy. How do you use Twitter to grow your online brand? We’d love to hear how you find this social marketing platform helpful for building your business.
-Olga Kazakova, Director of Marketing Communications, Volusion