Twitter for Business

Good day to all my readers (the few there are, lol),

This week’s blog is mostly a recap of last week’s which you can access here, it is based off a Lynda.com video by Brad Batesole, same as last week, and is about Twitter for Business.

As I focused a lot on Twitter last week I will bring up some items that I did not mention previously to help explain Twitter and its benefits for your business.

There’s a lot of lingo that is commonplace within the Twitter community, so it’ll be helpful to take time to become familiar with this terminology:

  • A Twitter Handle, is a handle is also known as a username, this is how you’ll be found on Twitter, and it’s a public representation of your company. You’ll notice that usernames are proceeded with an @ symbol, and this @ symbol identifies the username as a Twitter profile, and it’s also how you’ll reference other users when publishing tweets.
  • Tweet, the word tweet is used interchangeably, as a noun, or verb. A tweet is a short message published by a person or a company, it’s associated with a username. It might contain a photo, video, links, and up to 280 characters of text.
  • Posting or sending a message is called tweeting, or sending a tweet.
  • Timeline, the timeline refers to a real-time feed of tweets. You may also hear this referenced as a stream, or a feed. Your home stream, for example, is where you’ll see all the tweets shared by your friends, and other people you follow.
  • Following, following someone on Twitter is basically subscribing to see that user’s updates in your timeline. You begin following by clicking the follow button, found in various places on Twitter next to a username, and when you follow someone they’ll be notified, and they’ll be listed in the following section of your Twitter profile.
  • Follower, a follower is someone who has chosen to receive your updates in their timeline, and this is a main focus of businesses on Twitter.
  • This @reply posts an update, and references the username you’re replying to at the front of the tweet. People only see others @replies in their home timeline if they follow both the sender, and recipient of the message. But, they’ll still be able to see any @reply by visiting your profile directly.
  • Direct message is the only way to send a message privately.
  • Mention, sometimes you want to bring a tweet to someone’s attention, but you still want all of your followers to see the message.
  • Hashtag, a hashtag is any word beginning with the pound symbol. People use hashtags to reference a specific topic, and clicking on a hashtag takes you to search results for that term.
  • Retweet, or RT, a retweet is the act of passing along someone’s tweet onto your feed. It’s a way of resharing something, or letting someone know you agree with what they say. They’ll continue to receive credit for the message, but it’ll appear in your timeline as well with a small symbol indicating it’s a retweet (Batesole, 2017).

Here is a good little guide for some of the abbreviations used to shorten your tweets to fit it all in to 280 characters:

And in case you didn’t have enough information on the lingo or terminology used, click here to view the resource document from Twitter.

Once you have created your profile and although it’s tempting to start tweeting, ask yourself, why tweet if you don’t have any followers, unless you use hashtags, then those who are searching those hashtags will see them. Otherwise, resist and look up your competitors Twitter pages. See what they are doing, what they are tweeting, what works and what doesn’t. It’s important to really think things through before you click the “follow” button. Following someone essentially mean you are interested in what they have to say, although sometimes, we follow people because we want to stay updated with what’s happening. As a business, you need to be careful who you associate your account with. But it is still important to follow people and participate in the ecosystem (Batesole, 2017).

Twitter is built around short, timely messages. This means that something important might get pushed further and further down your business’s Twitter page because you’re constantly sharing new information and engaging with your customers. Now, fortunately, Twitter has a feature called Pin Tweet. This lets you select a particular tweet to always appear at the top of your stream. When users visit your profile, they’ll see it displayed in a larger font and at the top of the page, regardless of when you actually publish the message (Batesole, 2017).

You have to determine your purpose on Twitter. This is important because it allows you to create the best content for your followers. An essential aspect of connecting and engaging with your followers is direct communication. If your business strategy is to sell, influence or promote, then effective communication is key. This would involve direct messaging and engagement with other users (Ibrahim, 2015).

Choose to follow relevant and reputable businesses and people. Follow brands you want to engage with. These brands should have some benefit to your business. You don’t need to follow back everyone that follows you. But to start you do need followers, and one of the best ways to get started is to connect with your existing contacts, such as friends, family, current customers, companies you do business with, etc. You can sync your email to Twitter to give the app access to your contact list, this allows you to see which of your existing contacts are using Twitter. You want to build a high-quality fan base by following and engaging only users that are relevant (Batesole, 2017).

Another feature that Twitter offers is the Twitter List which allows you to stay updated and see tweets of a particular user without having to follow them. These are extremely helpful if you’d like to aggregate news sources, keep tabs on your competitors, or maintain a list of friends and family without following them as your business account. Think of a list as a curated newsfeed. You’ll create a list and that list will have its own content feed. You can name the list according to their purpose. For example, you can have a list for your competitors, news sources, etc. All you have to do is click on their profile, find the gear icon and choose add or remove from list (Batesole, 2017).

Twitter is like a giant coffee shop, only you can search for the exact conversations you want to jump into. Because Twitter is all about having your message seen, it’s only appropriate to send a reply, a retweet, or a mention when you discover a hidden gem. Here are two common ways to search for these conversations: basic searches and advanced searches. To start you will need to make a list of keywords related to your business, your products, and even your competitors. Make another list of the phrases, sentences, or keywords that would indicate to you, “Hey, that’s an opportunity for me to make a sale” (Batesole, 2017).

Retweets are powerful. There is an incredible advantage to receiving a retweet just as much as the advantage to retweeting someone else. As a business, understanding the true value of a retweet will help you to find a strategy that allows you to maximize their impact. So, let’s start by talking about why getting a retweet is valuable. Earning a retweet acts like an endorsement of sorts. Someone in your network agrees with what you’re saying enough to publish the same message out to their audience. To get traction to really go viral, you’re looking for a retweet (Batesole, 2017). To maximize your retweet potential your best bet is to have a catchy headline, clean English, and cool content to drive your tweet home (Kilpatrick, 2017). Gaining traction, even through a retweet, depends on being unique and timely. There’s no secret recipe for viral campaigns, so be creative, be authentic, and stay on brand to influence your users to retweet (Batesole, 2017).

Twitter has a suite of embeddable buttons allowing users to quickly share links, hashtags, follow users, and mention an account directly from any page on your website. With this tool, it makes it really easy to create the exact integration you’re looking for. Now, if you’re technically advanced and want a complete range of customizations, you can read more about buttons at dev.twitter.com. Twitter has a complete suite of widgets and tools, that allow you to easily integrate Twitter’s features, right on your website. For both the embeddable buttons and widgets, it is a lot more beneficial if you have a basic understanding of html to take full benefit of these features.

Twitter cards are an excellent way to extend your message and add even more media to a tweet. If you’re using Twitter, you’ve likely already encountered a Twitter card, and these cards display additional information in a tweet (Batesole, 2017).

Investing in Twitter advertising has its advantages. Social media advertising is fueled by the ability to not only get in front of a highly relevant audience but to also encourage them to share and spread your message organically. As you build relationships and entice users with engaging advertisements, you’ll unlock measurable business results (Batesole, 2017). Twitter advertising is often overlooked and wrongly so. Imagine targeting by keyword and appearing on the top of the twitter feeds of all those who have used or searched by your relevant keyword. Twitter allows you to target users by keywords, like Google Adwords, see previous blog here for more details, there could be a strong social intent and showing up in front of people who have searched or engaged, using your keyword is highly targeted. In a nutshell this targeting allows you to get in front of the right users, at the right time in the right context (Mian, 2016).

To manage your daily efforts, you want to ensure you are responding to users. As your Twitter followers grow, so to does the effort required to maintain an active presence. Now, there’s a variety of third party tools that you can use to really increase productivity, but third-party tools are not for everyone. Here are a few tips on how to enhance your experience while using Twitter directly. First, it’s important to set up the right email notifications. Too many will clutter your inbox and not enough means you might miss excellent opportunities to interact. To get to your email notifications, from anywhere on Twitter we’ll select the gear icon in the upper right-hand corner and choose Settings. They you select Email Notifications from the center of the left-hand navigation. Here, Twitter is going to show you all the email notifications that you’re currently receiving and they break it down into multiple sections, you can select or deselect the options that will fit your business. Secondly, spend time on Twitter when your followers are most likely to be on Twitter. Choose third-party tools that work with your business requirements, and that make sense to you.

With half a billion tweets popping up on Twitter everyday, you’re going to want to find ways to cut through the noise and stand out within your target audience. Twitter is all about content. It’s the main motivation to following a user. Craft exciting and unique content to gain and retain followers to help your business succeed (Batesole, 2017).

Based on all of this information, I may have to be weeding out my Twitter followings, to make sure what and who I follow are relevant to my business needs. I’m sure many of us may have to do this, so good luck on your own weeding 😊
Have a great week and thanks for reading.

Joan

References

Batesole, B. (2017, Apr 18). Twitter for business. Retrieved from https://www.lynda.com/Twitter-tutorials/Twitter-Business/480768-2.html

Choose your social media. (2013, Aug 10). India today [image]. Retrieved from http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/the-twitter-jargon-buster/1/298874.html

Ibrahim, K. (2015, Jul 08). Social media marketing: How you can use Twitter to build your business. Retrieved from http://nativedge.com/blog/social-media-marketing-how-you-can-use-twitter-to-build-your-business/

Kilpatrick, G. (2017, Feb 24). 35 ways to get more retweets [image]. Retrieved from http://twittertoolsbook.com/35-ways-to-get-more-retweets/

Mian, K. (2016). Twitter advertising. Retrieved from http://kirinmian.com/twitter-advertising/

Teachers guide to Twitter lingo. (2014, May). Educational technology and mobile learning [image]. Retrieved from http://www.educatorstechnology.com/2014/05/teachers-guide-to-twitter-lingo.html

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