When it comes to tweeting, most businesses do it wrong. The truth is, it takes a little bit of time to get used to the Twitter climate. There’s nothing quite like it. So, here are some tips for composing your 140-character lines of prose.
Those little pound symbols everyone uses on Twitter aren’t there to look cute. When you type a pound symbol with a phrase or word, it’s called a hashtag (ex: #twittertips). When you use a hashtag, your tweet is indexed with all the other tweets under the same subject or with the same hashtags. Hashtags increase the likelihood that more people will read your tweets, and if someone searches under your hashtag, they’ll find you. So try to use hashtags related to your industry, or make up your own funny or clever hashtags.
What goes around comes around. Compliment other businesses that have nothing to do with your industry. Did you eat at a cool restaurant for lunch? Let them know you enjoyed the experience. You never know when someone will return the love, and the more you network on Twitter, the more you’re mentioned. The more you’re mentioned, the more followers you’ll accrue.
Stagger Your Tweets.
Don’t post a bunch of tweets all at once. Business owners are busy, so when they have the time to get on Twitter, they may be temped to dump a bunch of stuff on there while they have the time. This is a surefire way to annoy your followers. Also, posting at different times of the day will reach different followers. Not everyone is on Twitter at the same time. When possible, tweet manually instead of relying on an automatic tweeting platform. When you rely on automatic tweets, you risk looking like you’re not replying to any tweets you might have been mentioned in.
If someone tweets about your business, posts a Foursquare check-in, or mentions your business, respond to them (unless it’s blatant spam). Thank your customers for their feedback. Show appreciation. Thank people who mention your business. If someone complains about your business, address it; don’t ignore it. In short, be kind.
Overall, the format of Twitter and its limitations on characters can be a huge opportunity to show off your business’s customer service skills, smarts, and brand. What have your own experiences been with Twitter? Have you found things that have worked well or other things that have worked not-so-well?