How to use Twitter for Small Business
Twitter isn’t only home to the latest debates on news, politics and celebrity gossip. With an audience of 326 million users a month, it’s also one of the most effective hubs to kickstart promotion of your brand or business.
If you’re like most small businesses on Twitter, you are using the platform to:
- Build brand awareness
- Keep up with the latest trends in your industry
- Boost SEO and drive traffic back to your site
And these aren’t the only benefits to using the platform to promote and grow your business. It’s quick and straightforward to use and can help your brand develop personality and a unique tone of voice.
It can be easy to spend a lot of time on Twitter without seeing the results that you need. The following steps will arm you with the tools you need to effectively use Twitter to promote your business online.
#1 Build your customer-base
Like any social media platform, developing a larger following is the best way to build social proof for your brand.
For maximum impact, you should grow followers on Twitter in conjunction with other social media platforms like Instagram. This will ensure maximum authenticity and credibility for your small business.
To grow followers on Twitter you should:
- Tweet frequently
- Post at optimal times in the day
- Engage with other users via responses, hashtags, and retweets
- Optimize your profile – a great bio and visual content goes a long way
- Build a network of like-minded Twitter users
- Drive traffic to Twitter from your other social media sites
Be sure to target Twitter users that have an interest in your niche. You can do this by using Twitter’s Advanced Search feature and searching for specific terms related to the unique area of your business.
If you carry out the above steps you will grow a loyal following online for your business. This translates into more potential customers and is a fantastic way to drive traffic back to your website or blog.
#2 Customer service
It’s all well and good collecting a new network of prospects. But first, you should make sure that your current customers are happy. Twitter is the ideal place to make this happen as data has shown that 21% of customers prefer it to use traditional social media channels.
Some of the most successful big businesses have used Twitter as a space to address customer questions and comments. This way they can tackle any customer concerns almost instantly.
For a great example of a brand that is nailing customer service, check out Class Pass. They maintain a friendly, personable tone of voice and they are always sure to reply to every customer.
To effectively navigate a customer service approach on Twitter you should be sure to:
- Never avoid negative comments
- Remember that Twitter is public and take the conversation off platform when appropriate
- Consider your customer’s privacy and only share certain information in a private DM
- Reply quickly – Twitter is fast-paced and customers will expect a faster response than they would over email
#3 Tweet your products
Sharing images and details about your products interspersed with other engaging content is an effective way to ensure that your products are seen.
You can use this technique to drive traffic back to your website or online shop. If you work with other brands and businesses make these Tweets shareable by tagging others and including them.
You could also use the site to explain how customers should use your product. Perhaps there are different ways of doing this?
Share helpful tips with your audience and prove that your product is worth purchasing. Take Etsy’s lead and incorporate a product shot into an image that is entertaining and relevant.
#4 Collect email subscribers
Using the site to increase the number of people subscribing to your emails and newsletters is another constructive way to use the platform.
When you are a small business the best way to do this is to use Twitter to share a free offer or promotion. Run a giveaway and trade entry for an email subscription.
By copying a shortened version of your email subscription landing link into your Twitter bio or the website box under the ‘Profile’ tab, you can increase your chances of customers signing up.
Note how successful sites such as The Economist include subscription links in their bio.
#5 Drive traffic to your site
While it’s a good idea to share other people’s content in order to increase engagement on the platform, be sure to consistently include links that will drive traffic back to your website, shop or blog.
An effective way to do this is to create high-quality blog posts and content on your website and share it with your following. Brands like BeardBrand create blog content for men with beards that not only drives traffic to their site from those interested in their niche but it also effectively creates the need for their product.
To encourage people to click on links that will direct them to your site you should use Tweets that are short and provocative. Give away just enough details to pique their interest but not so many that they know what the link says without having to read the blog post. You could also use an interesting quote from the post to grab your audience’s attention.
Be sure to utilize hashtags and @mentions in these posts as this will ensure they reach a greater potential audience. Asking for retweets can be a helpful way to promote greater engagement.
It’s also wise to remember that Tweets that contain images do significantly better on the platform than those that do not.
#5 Keep up to date with your niche
Are you up to date with the latest trends in your area? Twitter is the ideal place to keep your finger on the pulse.
Effectively utilizing hashtags is the best way to you can do this. Hashtags are essentially keywords that allow you to access all of the Twitter content that is associated with each particular word.
Use Twitter to research words that are popular in your niche at the moment. Keep up with the trends in business and your industry and be sure to engage with those Tweeting about them for maximum impact.
You can also convert Twitter trends that are unrelated to your niche into traffic. Take the example of Barclays Digital Eagles who recently capitalised on the fact that #NationalFishAndChipDay was trending. Cleverly converting the topic of fish to phishing, they were able to maximize their visibility on Twitter’s algorithm.
#6 Create coupons
Coupon codes can be made specific to Twitter and entered at the store register. It’s a wise move for any small business considering 43.5% of people say they follow their favorite brands on Twitter in order to receive special offers and deals.
Utilize coupon marketing as a trackable way to determine the ROI of your Twitter marketing strategy.
Offer a ‘secret’ exclusive coupon just for Twitter followers – this will make them feel rewarded and build brand loyalty. It also feels under the radar and customers believe they are getting a good deal.
Put a time-limit on your coupon to drive short-term sales and increase a sense of urgency.
You could also use coupons to engage more closely with your followers. Ask them to DM you for the code and create a more personal experience. This is where small businesses can take the edge as it is something that a bigger company might be unable to do due to the sheer number of responses.
You could also use Twitter to have brand ambassadors distribute codes. This could be one great way to reach a wider audience. Beauty brand Glossier has successfully done this and has brand representatives active on every social media platform.
Follow the above advice and you are guaranteed to drive traffic back to your website and increase your sales.