How to Set Your Profile, Make Connections, and Start Expanding Your Business Exposure Through Twitter
July is Twitter Month for us at eVision Media so for those already using Twitter for their business stay tuned for more ‘how tos’ and tips on using Twitter for business!
For those of you who haven’t braved the Twitter social media waters quite yet, this article will provide compelling reasons why you should use Twitter for business and then dive into how to set up your profile and how to get started building your following on Twitter.
Why Use Twitter For Your Business?
Twitter is a major player in online social media. In January of this year Google purchased Twitter Fabric (A Twitter development arm for apps) for an undisclosed sum for good reason. With 328 million + active Twitter accounts it’s a big audience to exist within.
Your ability to reach your target audience is amplified by having Twitter as it allows your users to see the latest news on your business in real time and provides a window into your company by way of what you share and promote. Almost 25% of verified Twitter users count themselves as journalists and often news hits Twitter before the other platforms have a chance to draft a report.
Whether you’re local or national or even international following journalists and making connections is a great way to have your own content shared with a large audience with the intention of course that some turn into paying customers.
It’s no surprise the current estimate is 93% of businesses use Twitter with over half using it daily.
Another big plus is how Twitter (and social media in general) has replaced traditional PR. Companies who use Twitter report a 20% improvement in customer relations!
How to Set Up Your Twitter Account
Let’s break down just how easy it is to set up a Twitter account. Then we’ll review how to use it.
Step one in setting up Twitter:
1. Sign up a. That linked text above will take you to Twitter’s signup page. This is a simple step. You can pick your username, sign up with your email address, and then confirm the account in your email (*it’s good to have your email already open in a new tab when doing this). 2. Edit your profile Here you’ll be adding your Twitter profile image and your header along with your bio text: a. In order to access this in your new account you’ll need to click on the top right next to where you see the word Tweet. b. This will open a menu. c. Select the top part where you see the username you entered when signing up. d. This will take you to your Twitter profile page. e. Now select Edit Profile as indicated on the page. f. Now you can enter your bio (limited to 160 alpha numeric characters) *When drafting your bio start with what your business does or share what your followers can expect from you and end with something more personal about you. Example 1: A certified fitness coach who’s passion is health, wellness & eating Vegan sharing tips and recipes to help you on your health journey. Wife & Mom who loves the outdoors Example 2: (This is mine): I share tips on Digital Marketing, Websites, Branding & Social Media. An experienced & passionate Web Developer, eBusiness Consultant, Wife, Mother & Chocoholic g. Update your professional profile photo (image size: 400 X 400) h. Update your header image (image size: 1500 X 500) i. Enter your location j. Add in your website address k. Choose your theme colours – ideally have them match your business brand colours l. Then click “Save changes”!
Now that you’ve got your profile it’s time to look for followers.
Finding Followers on Twitter
This part is both very easy and very hard. Let me explain! It’s easy to secure followers from anyone looking to turn you into a customer. It’s much harder in the reverse order. Some accounts have hundreds of thousands of followers but nearly all are other people looking for clients. It can be easy to get sucked into a sinkhole of marketers so be very wary of any suspicious accounts. Instead look for people you know. Not just personally but brand personalities you trust. There is a very easy search function at the top right. Just type in a name and start checking.
You can also use Twitter’s Advanced search to narrow down your efforts further.
People with high numbers of ‘Following’ and low numbers of ‘Followers’ indicates they’re not securing good connections with their content so watch out. Even if they are following you, it only means they are watching to see if you follow back and as soon as you do, they will unfollow you. A practice I do not condone at all. Any accounts with near even numbers of ‘Following’ and ‘Followers’ could simply be people in a niche who follow each other but aren’t reaching anyone outside that sphere. They’re okay to add but make sure that’s not ALL you add. You can use Twitter’s email tool as well to farm your email for possible connections held within your emails records of people you’ve emailed with in the past. If you’re still stuck: try writing down a list of brands like yours and add them. Following your competition not only shows you what’s popular in your industry, it also gets your name in front of their followers if you ever feel compelled to reply. Another easy trick we covered recently during our Twitter month is using hashtags to find local businesses on Twitter. Many of us deal locally so make sure to check out that post linked above.
Don’t worry about your Follower count too much and focus on quality over quantity.
Now it’s time to start tweeting! This is your 140 character opportunity to market yourself in your own voice. Try some tweets out that link to your site’s pages but don’t overdo it. Focus on building out an identity that establishes trust in your followers.
Look for voices in your industry with trust where you can retweet and like their content. When retweeting look for opportunities to tie their point back to your business. If they share X and you build awareness around X then retweet and add a link back to your relevant page whether it’s a static product page or a blog post. The goal is to reach both them and your users in a way that connects you to the trusted authority. A great way to increase the viability of your tweeting is to add an image to your tweet. This is really easy and recently Twitter made it even easier with their addition of a GIF function. You can search for funny and/or relevant GIFs right within your Tweet. Just click below the text box where it says GIF.
Make it fun and share content you love. Don’t get into a trap of only using Twitter for self promotion.