The Twitterverse is a dynamic, fast-moving place with an unending stream of messages. But with so much content popping up so quickly—then just as quickly getting pushed aside by new messages—how can you make sure the tweets from your business are getting noticed?
Here are four easy-to-implement tips that will help you attract attention from the Twittersphere.
Keep Your Profile Fresh
Begin by using all the tools that Twitter makes available to polish your profile. "Create a customized header image for your profile," suggests Kim Schultz, owner of Kim Schultz - Creative Social Media and Marketing. "Add text, brand messaging and images that are important to your brand. Make it visually appealing to users landing on your profile. Make them want to know more."
Schultz also recommends using the free app Canva for creating a header that stands out. And she recommends you look carefully at your header images to make sure they're top quality. "The header images [now]—1500 x 500 pixels—are larger than on previous profiles, so make sure the images are high-resolution enough so they don't look pixelated when enlarged," Schultz says.
And now, she adds, you can pin a tweet so that it stays at the top of your feed on your profile page. But be sure to choose carefully: As Schultz suggests, "Pin a tweet with engaging, important information that you want your customers to see."
Make Your Tweets Stand Out
What can you do to make your individual tweets attract attention in your followers' feeds? "Use icons such as arrows, music notes or even hearts," says media coach and trainer Shawne Duperon. "You simply hit your alt key and a number to explore the icons available."
Including a non-text character can help your message stand out from the sea of 140-character tweets your followers are seeing. Duperon particularly likes the way "alt 16" becomes "►," which can be used at the beginning of a tweet to draw attention to the message.
"Say more by adding an image," suggests Seth Worby, founder and CEO of marketing agency Champ Internet Solutions. "Not only does the image stand out in the feed, but you also get the added bonus of making an impression."
And always make sure that what you're calling attention to is truly worthwhile content your followers will be interested in. "Quit selling, content is king," Duperon advises. "Give your followers, clients and customers exquisite content that's easy to share and provides value."
Be sure to keep your content short, sweet and to the point. "Keep tweets as short as possible," says Jesse Ignell, marketing communications manager for Computer Market Research, a company that provides channel management software solutions. "A lot of activity happens on Twitter, and people are trained to keep their eyes moving very quickly."
"Make your content tweets less than 100 characters," Duperon adds. "The shorter, the better, and the more you'll be retweeted, creating engagement, a stronger following and new customers. Long tweets force people to edit your content to fit the 140 maximum, making it an obstacle for folks to retweet you."
Don't Overuse Hashtags
Select your hashtags carefully, Duperon suggests. It's not worthwhile to make your company name a hashtag because it's likely no one else is searching for or following that.
"Do not abuse the hashtag," Ignell adds. "I would recommend one per post, and try to find hashtags that best relate to your business and can be used consistently in the future."
It won't do your business any good if you tweet without engaging your audience. "Talk to people, actually thank people and comment on what they say and answer their questions," says Janice Clark, owner of BizMSolutions, a word-of-mouth marketing strategies firm. "Show yourself to be an insightful, caring human being who's actually paying attention, and there's no end to the people who will follow you."
"Respond to every person who mentions your brand or business on Twitter," Schultz adds. "People want to feel connected. Take the time to keep the relationships going before, during and after the experience with your business."
Schultz also recommends setting aside 30 minutes to an hour each day to engage with Twitter fans, users and customers. You should also take the time to search out potential customers and talk to them as well.
And remember, you may have to tweet fairly frequently to be seen. "Unlike Facebook, one or two tweets a day isn't going to do too much for your business," says Matt Diaz, account manager at communications agency No Limit Agency. "New tweets are generated every second or so, and in order to get noticed, you need to be seen. Find a happy medium between a lot and a few tweets per day."
By putting these tips to work for you, you can make Twitter a strong partner in customer communications.
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