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Top tips for getting buff on Twitter

Twitter isn't for everyone, but increasingly we are seeing the direct benefits the micro-blogging site has for the businesses and organisations with whom we work. In this post, we offer some top tips on how you can get buff on Twitter and start reaping the benefits.

From increased website traffic, insight and engagement with conversations, real time news and industry commentary, to tracking trending topics and monitoring brand sentiment, there are so many reasons for corporates and not-for-profits to explore this useful communication and information channel.

So, why bother?

Here a few tips that might convince you Twitter is worth exploring:

  • Connect with stakeholders and new audiences in your industry
  • Engage and respond to the latest news, commentary and changes in your business area
  • You can meet objectives like raising company profile, driving website traffic, and being up to date with information and dialogue
  • Once you are really engaged, you can lead conversation and drive innovation within your business and show how you do it externally.
Follow the leader

The best way to delve into Twitter and start realising the value the channel offers is to start seeking out people and organisations that interest you professionally and personally. Use the search functionality on Twitter, using key words that are relevant to your business or line of work, and start following accounts (or handles, as they are known on in the Tweet-o-sphere) that interest you.

Another way to follow relevant handles is to go to an account that is aligned with your business line and see who they are following - and then simply hit the follow button while you are logged in to your own account and you will soon see the magic of a busy Twitter feed happen. There are also search functions like Tweepz that can bring up whole lists of accounts that are relevant to your search query.

A useful way to find out who you should follow is by looking at the bio that accompanies users' profiles – if they mention areas that are of interest to you – for example property, business, finance, recruitment or law, then they are likely to be tweeting about subjects that will be of value to your business or organisation.

Generally speaking, the more accounts or handles you follow, the more followers you will start to get.

Engaging, every day

To get real value out of Twitter, you really need to engage on a regular, constant basis. The more you use the platform, the more you will understand it, the more information you will gain and the more you will be able to contribute.

I'd suggest you start out by tweeting a few times a week, and then try to build up to daily tweeting – even if it's just sharing a relevant article, idea or image. Soon it will become second nature – tweeting shouldn't be a hassle, a bore, or a chore – and if it is, maybe it's not the platform for you (don't worry, there's always LinkedIn, Google + or even the dreaded Facebook).

Did you know the average Twitter user has tweeted 307 times? If you are using Twitter, how does your activity stack up?

The humble hashtag

The humble hashtag - is there a more useful tool on Twitter? I find hashtags really useful for target my tweets to a more specific audience. .

For example, if I'm sharing a news article on residential property research, I'd use a hashtag like #realestate or #residential or even #homes – the result? Other users who are also interested in residential property will be scanning their Twitter feed for interesting and relevant material, and are more likely to retweet, favourite or reply to your tweet because the usefulness has been explicitly highlighted through your use of the hashtag.

In fact, tweets that use hashtags get twice as much engagement as tweets without

Have a play round with searching for some areas that interest you today; it might be #business #property #legal #accounting #education or #recruiting. Or think of your personal interests and see what comes up, it may be #craftbeer #golf #rowing #art – the possibilities are endless and once you see the vast amount of interesting tweets, users, and links out there, you will probably get hooked.

Rich tweets - imagery, links, video

It is often said that in the online world, if content is king, then photos and imagery are the little prince.

Did you know that like hashtags, tweets with image links get twice as many shares as tweets without? Certainly something to think about!

Using imagery, as well as linking to websites, blogs, videos, and news articles is a really easy way to be of use to your followers/audience, and it doesn't take a lot more effort than a plain text tweet. Tweets with links are actually 86% more likely to get retweeted than those without!

Here are a few pointers for getting the maximum impact with your tweets:

  • People love visuals – we all learn in different ways, not just via text
  • Use photos/imagery wherever possible in your tweets
  • Photos drive click-throughs to websites, engagement and sharing
  • Let your audience know your face – make sure you have a profile picture in your bio.
Enjoy it

Like my post on Pinterest for business a few months ago noted, the main thing that will motivate you to get value out of Twitter is to enjoy it.

Twitter is a great way to connect with people and businesses in your industry, to keep you up to date with the latest news and views, and to give you perspective and insight that traditional news and communication channels might not provide.

At the end of the day, businesses and organisations that choose to ignore the many benefits that Twitter provides are missing out on a valuable opportunity to engage with potential clients, customers, thought-leaders and media people that can take your business to the next level.

As always, if you have any queries about using Twitter, or how your business can make best use of this online channel, get in touch with us! You can even tweet us via @mikela88 or via The Clarity Business company handle @ShapeTheMessage.

Happy tweeting!

Extra reading and resources

Like this post? Check out another post from us, which asks: Is the media release dead?