Twitter. That miraculous, 140 character marketing tool that has the power to both wow and frustrate.
If you’re using Twitter for business, you’ve probably found that simply acquiring followers does not always equal a boon in your marketing efforts. Perhaps you sense that your tweets aren’t being heard or, worse, your posts are ignored altogether. Why? Likely, you’ve gathered a mass of the wrong followers—people who are just tagging along and not really interested in what you have to say or offer in the first place. Finding the right network on Twitter is imperative, and so is keeping them engaged. But, how do you find the right followers?
Your profile is the bulletin board that people stop to read when looking for new people to follow. An effective profile will tell people who you are, what you do and why they should follow you. It’s a way for like-minded tweeters to find each other. So, use it wisely! Start by fixing your profile in three easy steps.
1. Show off
Your face that is. That’s right; add a picture of you for the Twitter world to see.
One of the first things people look at when considering people to follow is the avatar. Your avatar (or, avi) is the little picture you added to your account when you created your Twitter profile. That tiny little image has big, big power. Essentially, it can pull people in or turn them away. Using a generic image, such as the graphics Twitter gives you to choose from, or a random image that has nothing to do with your business, deflates your credibility. Only other deflated tweeters will follow you, so be sure your avi shows off the real you. Make that personal connection!
2. Have a reason
You’re allowed a short bio on your Twitter profile. This is your chance to tell the world who you are or what your business is about. Add in your description, a snippet about the things you’ll be tweeting about. Perhaps you dish tips and ideas on throwing a smashing party. Or, perhaps your business is centered on quick recipes or meal preparation. Let people know you’ll be tweeting about these things by mentioning it in your bio. You’re most likely to find followers who are genuinely interested in what you have to say when you let them know what you’re talking about in the first place.
3. Have a personality
Because we humans are nosey by nature, we want to know the person behind the Twitter name. No matter if you’re a hobby business or a thriving corporation, there is nothing wrong with injecting a little of your personality into your Tweets. You want to be personable, relatable and, well, human. People connect better when they feel they are interacting with a live person and not just a computer screen. Don’t be afraid to talk a little about yourself, share some humor or interests you may have. When people get to know you, and subsequently like you, they’ll look forward to reading your tweets.
Once you’ve tweaked your Twitter profile to be a better reflection of your business, it’s time to engage your followers. Over time, you’ll want to start forming personal relationships with your followers. You want them to know you and want to hear from you.
How, exactly, do you do that?
Share what others tweet about
When someone you follow tweets about something you’re interested in, share it. Retweet your favorite posts from those you follow; share the love. By doing so, you’re making other people feel heard and they are likely to return the favor.
Post good stuff
Really, that’s all there is to it. No fluff (unless fluff is your main reason for being on Twitter in the first place). Tweet about things that your followers will find valuable-information, how-to’s, photos, etc...These things are more likely to be read, appreciated and retweeted—which builds your credibility and following.
Talk to your followers
It’s OK to drum up personal conversations with followers that you have an interest in. Say hi. Ask about the kids. Form friendships. After all, Twitter is about making personal connections. Those connections are the most valuable piece of the Twitter puzzle. Stay connected and watch your relevant follower base—and marketing efforts—grow!
Justine Grey is a Web entrepreneur who writes Work Life Joy for frazzled business builders who long to work vibrantly and live beautifully. You can find her on Twitter at @JustineGrey chatting about life, work and her pop culture obsession.