More and more businesses are looking into and utilizing what Twitter has to offer them. The overall popularity of micro-blogging continues to grow tremendously. Advertisers and marketers alike are using Twitter the same way they would run their corporate business blog, which is much different than a personal twitter profile and needs to be. Twitter marketing can be tough, but with these tips, you can make use of this highly popular social network.

In the past year Twitter business users were given a profile facelift. They have made changes to increase the amount of engagement, as the call it, between a business and their followers. The capability to make your profile page more unique and stand out with images has really increased the amount of functionality a business now has. Changes include:

  • New Profile Header Images – now, like Facebook, your account has a main image. It is almost like having your business card front in center.
  • Updated Photo Streams – Twitter has added this feature to make it easier to showcase images you have posted within your tweets and additionally share them with your followers.
  • New Mobile Apps – a new version for Android, iPhone and iPad have been released. These new apps have made it easier than ever to stay connected with your business and personal followers alike

Building an Effective Business Profile

1. Choose your @username – your @username is your Twitter URL. You want to make sure you save this way ahead of time, even if you are not ready to utilize Twitter quite yet.
2. Visually Represent your Business and Brand – you want to choose a profile and background image that represents your business. Logos are good, but don’t have to be used. You can also use a person or character instead; just make sure it truly represents the overall feel for your brand. Your background is a space you can get creative, a place you may want to spend some extra money for a stand-out design.
3. Let your Audience Know Who you are – in your bio, write a clear yet brief summary that best describes you, your brand, products or services. In order to drive traffic, include a link that is trackable and leads to your main website or unique landing page. Your bio should sum up exactly what you want people to know about your business, kind of like an abbreviated commercial.
4. Align All Efforts – you want to make sure each element of your account aligns with the other. This includes making sure your name, bio, website and profile all work together, telling your audience who you are and what your business is all about. Along with content aligning, your design elements need to mesh together as well. The more you align these efforts, the more professional you will seem and the more you will get taken seriously.

Tips for Building a Following

Just like any marketing strategy, you need a plan of action, something you and your team can follow so that all team members are on the same page. The Tweets you post are a direct line of communication between you and your target audience, you need to make each one count. Each message needs to be timely and engaging (learn the types of Tweets to avoid):

  • Stay Up-To-Date – this includes being a good listener, watching for new followers, see what your customers or target prospects are saying about you and look for anyone that uses your company name in their Tweets. Twitter is a great platform for learning real-time information about your company and then being able to make decisions to move forward with based on that information.
  • Choose your voice – picking your voice can be difficult. Again, your Tweets (learn about the five types of Tweets) are direct communication between you and your customers or prospects. You want to know only be picky on what you say, but also how you say it. Once you decide your tone and how you want to be seen by people, you need to continue with it. Be authentic, conversational and empathetic to your followers.
  • Build a Plan – even though Twitter happens in real-time, it is important to still have some sort of plan or strategy to work from. Build a content calendar that aligns with special events, product launches, holidays, promotions, etc. You can then fill in the gaps with real-time or current events that are happening around the world that align with your business.
  • Invoke an Action – Twitter is all about going viral. In order to do this, you will want o tweet messages that people are interested in and want to share with others. If no one ever retweets your message, you need to re-think your content. It is known that the most retweeted Tweets are ones that include some sort of photo, quote or video.

Damage Control

It is not only important to keep up-to-date with your account to be current, but also to run damage control. People will post things that may be negative to your business at some point. This is where you can turn a negative into a positive. In order to do this, you do need to monitor your account and possible mentions of your company name. There are times when it will be better to say nothing at all as well. Deciding what to say can be difficult, just remember that the whole world will see your stance on the matter, and be strategic with your response.

Final Thoughts on Twitter Marketing

In addition to the tips above, there are many more tools to utilize while you are building and utilizing your Twitter business account. One final tip is to use current news and events. What better way to grab the attention of your target audience than to engage them with current news going on around the world. It can be something political, celebrity like or sports based; it just needs to be relevant to the world and somehow tie in to your business.

Take a few of the tips I have shared with you today, create or update your profile and enjoy the results you will see. Making a Twitter page for your business is pretty simple stuff. You will be up and running in no time. Twitter is not only useful to your business, it is fun, enjoy it and the benefits it will give.