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Twitter Hacks for Content Marketing

8 Twitter Hacks for Better Content Marketing

Twitter Hacks for Content Marketing
Often, business owners try Facebook out as their first venture into social media marketing. They know they need to have a Twitter presence too (because their audience is there), but they often drag their feet, finding Twitter intimidating or believing it’s complicated. The truth is Twitter is no harder to use than Facebook; it’s simply different. But no worries; we have you covered. Here are 8 Twitter hacks to make successful tweeting easier:

1. Craft an Engaging Elevator Pitch

Your Twitter bio has to be short and sweet. You have only 160 characters to work with, so make sure it packs a serious punch. Think of it as the ultimate elevator speech, and be sure to include your link. Don’t hesitate to update your header photo with text as well. Many Twitter users will check out your profile before they decide to follow you.

2. Go for Quality Over Quantity

You can cast a wide net and get a huge number of followers, but that won’t help your business if your followers aren’t really interested in what you have to offer. Aim to attract quality followers rather than random hits by crafting tweets that are relevant to your industry and of clear interest to your audience. Tweeting about your lunch or your fun weekend plans might entertain you but probably won’t help your business (unless this is somehow relevant to your brand).

3. Follow the Right People

You can work towards building the right audience by following others who are interested in or involved in your industry. Not only will these people follow you back, but their followers may jump on board and follow you too. How do you find the right people to follow? Do a Twitter search using industry-relevant hashtags and keywords. Check out your competitors and see who’s following them. These people are probably interested in what you have to offer as well. Want some handy tools for finding followers? Check out TweetStork and Audiense.

4. Get the Most out of Each Tweet

With Twitter, you have a low character count, but you’re also dealing with a short tweet lifespan. The average lifespan of a tweet is only about 24 minutes, so you want to make each message count. Use a link shorterner like Bitly or Google URL Shortener to shorten your links, so you have more room for text. And be sure to include relevant hashtags to make it super easy for anyone who is searching to find your content.

5. Tweet When Your Audience Is on Twitter

The worst time to tweet is when your audience isn’t on Twitter. Use a tool like Tweriod to gain insight into your audience’s Twitter habits and figure out when they are most likely to see your tweets. Then, tweet at those times.

6. Provide Appealing Visuals

Social media users are very visual, so give them what they want. Tweets with images or videos get more click-throughs, more retweets, and more favorites. Tweets with images get 150-percent more retweets, and those with videos get nearly 3 times as many.

7. Be an Authentic Engager

There’s something interesting about you and your brand. In fact, there are probably a lot of things your audience would like to know about you. So tell them, keeping an eye toward ensuring that your messages are both authentic and interesting. Not sure what your audience will find interesting? Use a keyword search to learn which relevant topics people are talking about on Twitter.

8. Be Social

All too often, people forget that one of the key words in social media marketing is social. Get involved in conversations, follow others, retweet, share, and bring something helpful and informative to the table. Doing this will not only help attract attention to your brand but also humanize it. Make a point of being social at least a few times each day.

Use the Twitter hacks above to make tweeting a part of your social media marketing plan. They’ll help you put your best foot forward, find your audience, and be more social. Be sure to come back and let us know how these Twitter hacks worked for you!

The Ins and Outs of Twitter Chats and Parties

The Ins and Outs of Twitter Chats and Parties

The Ins and Outs of Twitter Chats and Parties

If you’ve been on Twitter for an extended period of time, you’ve seen a Twitter chat and party or two. Maybe you’ve participated in or hosted one or two! It’s one of the ways brands and businesses are connecting on Twitter. Most importantly, chats and parties are a direct connection to your current audience and to the audience you’re trying to reach. We’ve had tremendous success in hosting Twitter parties for some of our clients! Our efforts yielded participation rates of up to 233 (averaging 185 per party) people and 8,194 tweets in just one hour!

The Ins and Outs of Twitter Chats and Parties

Let’s look at what makes up a chat or a party, because they are different. Yes, chats and parties both live on Twitter and include a relevant hashtag for search and participation purposes. However, chats are more laid back and geared toward businesses, groups, and individuals who want to discuss a pre-determined topic in a specific field of interest. Parties are more formal and are sponsored by brands that pay a host to run it for them, and the topic is, of course, about the brand. Start thinking of themes, questions, hashtags (I’ll talk about this later), and prizes now!

Twitter Chats

A Twitter chat is the online version of a social club. Most of them meet weekly at a designated time to discuss relevant topics previously chosen by the host. Chats are a casual event because they don’t require a reservation or registration. Participants are encouraged to join in at the appointed time and use the appropriate hashtag. Sometimes this hashtag changes so it’s important to check-in beforehand to know which one you should be using.

Twitter chats aren’t only social media, digital marketing, or online-topics specific. Chances are if you’re interested in it, there’s a chat for it. That also means that chats aren’t only hosted by businesses. Groups and individuals (sometimes even brands) host them to bring like-minded people together in conversation about what they love. If your interest lies in the medical community, but you want to know more about agriculture, join a chat! The opportunity for networking, socializing, and learning about other businesses are huge!

Brands can participate in chats as well, by not forgetting to look for a chat that aligns with their goals. If you’re noticing a chat that is reaching your audience and/or talking about your topic, join in! After you’ve participated in one or two chats, reach out to the host and ask about a sponsorship. The next chat might include a mention of your brand, a banner on the chat’s page, or an opportunity to ask questions. Sponsorships from Twitter chats have a less restrictive policy, so if you get the chance to have one, be creative!

Twitter Chat Etiquette

As previously mentioned, Twitter chats are more relaxed, but that doesn’t mean it’s a free-for-all. Businesses and users need to follow some basic rules:

· Be polite: Everyone is there to have fun, learn, and talk about his or her interests.

· Don’t talk about yourself (too much): If you’re only there to turn the conversation to you, maybe you shouldn’t be there. However, if you have an experience relevant to the topic/question, that could be valuable to someone else.

· Interact: If you agree with a participants comment, feel free to say so. If you like a question, voice that. Like tweets, retweet, and others will return the favor.

Twitter Parties

Did you know that Twitter parties originated eight years ago? They don’t happen very often (although they could be done weekly), and they typically include a sponsorship from a brand. Organization is extremely vital for a party seeing as there are rules and guidelines participants need to follow. A host gets paid by a brand to run the party, and in return, the host gathers their top resources for the party which can include a diverse variety of things such as: influencers, blog posts, giveaways, events, etc. The host and the sponsor work as a team to decide what the topic will be, and additional features they want the party to have.

Parties are also more formal than chats. Think about a party that you’ve attended. Was there an RSVP giving the time, place, possible dress code, and directions to the party? The same applies to a Twitter party. An RSVP is your virtual guest list telling you who is planning on attending the party. If you’re giving away a prize or two during your party, check your guest list to make sure the winner actually attended the party and participated with the hashtag.

Twitter parties provide an amazing benefit to not only brands but the participants as well. This is give and take at its finest. Typically parties consist of women, either hosting or engaging. Men’s products and/or brands can make a name for them here and break new ground.

Twitter Party Etiquette

Organization matters greatly in a Twitter party. To keep from losing the structure, apply these rules that need to be followed by both the participants and the host.

· Be polite: This is important (and obvious) no matter if you’re in a chat or a party.

· Don’t ignore yourself: This is the opposite of a chat. Since a brand is sponsoring a party, the topics and agenda for the party are partly created by the brand, so, of course the brand is going to come up, and that’s okay! Make sure it’s relevant, though.

· Interact: Like, retweet, and respond to tweets. Show the participants that you’re listening to them and not only letting tweets scroll on by you. If you’re a participant in a party, this needs to be done to show the brand that you’re listening as well!

· Follow through: As a brand, you may be offering prizes and giveaways, and that’s great! After you’ve chosen a winner, get their information right away. As a winner, provide your information as quickly as possible.

Hashtags for Twitter Chats and Parties

A hashtag is arguably the most important aspect of a chat or a party. Hashtags are used for search on Twitter. When a user searches for a particular hashtag, they can choose a conversation based on that hashtag. If you know there’s a chat or party that you’re interested in but not able to attend, the hashtag allows you to come back later, search for it, and see what you missed. It’s what keeps your chat or party organized. Every time you compose a tweet based off of a topic, use the hashtag for it. You’ll be able to reach more people with one than without one. If you want to win a prize, chances are one of the rules is that you’ve used the hashtag.

By using a designated hashtag, you’re conversing with that group and not all of Twitter. At times you may use more than one; one for the party itself, and one for the topic/brand. Brands or businesses should set up a platform that allows them to search for the hashtag and see only that, making it easier to respond to the participants in the chat or party. Some of them even add the hashtag automatically into your tweet if you’re tweeting directly from that platform.

Let’s Chat (or Party)!

No matter who you are, a Twitter party and/or chat should be in your Twitter strategy, because they’re a part of what makes Twitter so special, and they bridge the gap between you and your audience. Get creative! Now’s the time to show your followers that you not only want them to know you but that you want to get to know them! How do you get to know someone? You chat with them of course!

Have you hosted or participated in a Twitter chat or party? Please let us know in the comments.

Tweet Like a Pro

How to Tweet Like a Pro

advanced twitter tips

If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you can probably tell we’re all aflutter about Twitter. Even though we wonder why Twitter is so darn difficult for people, we’re big advocates for using Twitter as part of your overall social media strategy.  It’s a powerful tool for building your business.

What do you do when the ideas just don’t flow as readily as you’d like? What can you do when you’re long on enthusiasm but short on compelling ideas for tweets? No worries! We’ve compiled a list of ideas you can use to get you through those difficult times as well as great resources for finding content to share.

Creative Ideas for Compelling Tweets

Once you’ve been tweeting a while, you’ll develop a formula or a style that makes it easier to come up with consistent content many times a day, virtually every day of the week. If your style is primarily content curation, over time you’ll establish a list of trusted sources for finding just the right stuff for your Twitter followers. You’ll get in a groove so that tweeting won’t become a chore. But in the meantime, you may need some prompts.

Here are 12 prompts that will get you thinking about things you can tweet about. Pick a few every day, and change it up from day-to-day. Each of these prompts is good for hundreds of tweets over the course of a few months.

12 Prompts for Quick and Easy Twitter Content

  1. Tweet a link to a blog post you agree with and add a comment (on the post) that mentions one of the points in the post.
  2. Share a photo of something you pass on the street that relates to your business in some way.
  3. Share a link to your own blog post and ask people a question about it.
  4. Pose a question to your followers asking what they think about an issue that’s hot at the moment.
  5. Start a conversation. Respond to a question someone asked or simply comment on something someone said. Then keep the conversation going, back and forth once or twice using @ mentions.
  6. Answer the question, “What’s inspiring you?” (as in, “Today I’m inspired by…”)
  7. Answer the question, “What’s bothering you?” (obviously, keep it relevant).
  8. Share a link to a video that you think might be of interest to your followers.
  9. As you go about your day at work, notice the behind-the-scenes image or story that you can share with your customers, like a work-in-progress.
  10. Tweet an inspiring quotation.
  11. Retweet the best tweets of those you admire.
  12. Share a link to a news story related to your business and comment on it.

Keeping a list like this handy so you can refer to it when you’re having a Twitter writer’s block can help you keep up your Twitter content and make it easy and fun at the same time.

Resources for Links to Share on Twitter

You may only get 140 characters (for now!), but by linking to an article, blog post or website, you open a door to a whole new world of information. Sharing links is one of the best ways to use Twitter for business. It shows that you are a valuable source of information, and by choosing the most useful information for your community, you ensure that people will come to count on you, and respect your knowledge of your field. There is a firehose of information out there, and anyone who can be trusted to find the best of the best will be rewarded with followers and retweets.

Here are several of our favorite resources for finding Twitter content to share, to help build your stream:

  1. Google Alerts is one of the easiest tools to use. Go to the site and choose the subjects you want to know about. Google will email your chosen content from news, the web and blogs based on the frequency you select.
  2. Addictomatic is a fun and, ahem, addicting aggregator to use. Their tagline of “inhale the Web” is fairly true, and they take content one step beyond Google’s results by bringing in information from Yahoo and Bing.
  3. Paper.li is a tool you can use to automatically curate content on a wide range of topics and arrange it in a magazine-style format. The tool is very easy to do and can automatically Tweet your paper and send it via email too!
  4. If you know there are key bloggers whose content is regularly worth sharing, add them to your RSS reader and search them daily for the best posts of your favorite bloggers.
  5. AllTop is a significant help in finding new blogs to add to your reader. Search for topics and AllTop will return results for you.
  6. When you’re feeling short on inspiration, go to listen to a Ted Talk. Not only are you likely to get inspired, you may just find some great content worth sharing.
  7. Of course, there is always your own Twitter feed! Build a list of people you follow that Tweet about the topics you’re interested in. Or, type a term or phrase in the Twitter search box to find new and interesting content to share.

Try some of the above ideas, and then be sure to come back and fill us in on how they worked out for you. Have bright ideas of your own? We want to hear them! Where do you find the best content to share on Twitter? How do you come up with engaging ideas? We’d love to hear your ideas on this topic. Share them with us in the comments section!

How to Find People to Follow on Twitter

“How to Find People to Follow on Twitter” was co-authored by Stephanie Schwab and Christina Strickland

how to find people to follow on twitter

You know the influence of Twitter. It is, after all, a powerful and engaging social media platform. But, if you’re not following anyone and no one’s following you, it’s neither powerful nor engaging. You need followers (beyond your family and friends), and you need to be following other interesting Twitter users too. So, how do you do that? We have you covered. Here’s a quick guide to finding people to follow on Twitter

How to Find People to Follow on Twitter: Make the First Move

When you’re just starting out on Twitter, you’ll want to find people to follow who will satisfy your objectives. You follow them, and a significant number will follow you right back! You may just want to lurk a bit and listen in on conversations at first. You may want to connect with influencers like journalists or bloggers, or you may want to find other people with similar interests. No matter what you’re trying to achieve, one of the most targeted ways to connecting with like-minded people is to search Twitter bios.

How to Find People to Follow on Twitter: Try FollowerWonk

We think FollowerWonk is particularly useful for searching within the content of people’s bios, so you can get to the specifics people include there. It’s one of the best places to source Twitter users to follow.

Once you log in to FollowerWonk using your Twitter account, you’ll see a large search box. Let’s say you are a classical musician and you’d like to find people with the words ‘classical music’ in their bio who live in New York. You can add the phrase “classical music” in the search box and expand your search by choosing the small link below, entitled “more options.” Those other options include URL, number of followers, name and location. Go ahead and choose your location since that’s what you are most interested in.

When you run the search, FollowerWonk not only delivers your results, but provides a list of people that tells you how long they’ve been on Twitter, what their influence is, how many followers they have and how many times they’ve tweeted. The bio will tell you virtually everything else you need to know. So much information at your fingertips!

You’ll be able to decide if you want to follow a musician, a music blogger, a politician who loves classical music, or all three. You never know what kinds of conversations you’ll have or where it could lead until you start listening, sharing information meeting people with similar interests on Twitter.

When you’ve chosen from this richly annotated list of potential people to follow, you can look at the people they follow (since birds of a feather. . . ) and follow them. Before you know it, you’ll have collected yourself the most highly focused, fascinating community of people to talk to, listen to and share information with, all with a few clicks.

Exciting isn’t it? But wait! There’s more.

How to Find People to Follow on Twitter: 4 More Tools

1. Crowdfire

Crowdfire is an app that lets you follow people by hashtag, location or even people following other Twitter users. It’s easy to use and also allows you to see a list of people that aren’t following you back.

2. Tweet Stork

Tweet Stork delivers recommendations to you based on tweets related to your own, users with lists similar to yours or users that retweet the same type of content you do. Just select your option and Tweet Stork will provide a list. You can even follow others without leaving the site.

3. SocialBro

SocialBro (now, Auisense) has a host of tools to help you grow your Twitter followers and find people to follow on Twitter.  Their targeted filtering capabilities help you find some of the most engaged people you can follow.

4. Twitter Advanced Search

This is Twitter’s own search tool. It’s become more robust over the past year or so and is definitely worth a look. It even allows you to include a search for sad or happy face characters or questions.

If you find a lot of interesting users, organize them into Twitter lists for easier conversation management. Of course, we’d never recommend following another user simply because they match a few bits of search criteria. Take a few moments to read through their Twitter bio and tweets to determine if the user is truly a good match for you. If he or she is, follow and be sure to engage!

To get what you want, you typically have to give a little something, and Twitter is no exception to this rule. Go ahead and find like-minded people to follow. Before you know it, you’ll have a long list of followers too.

Why Is Twitter So Darn Difficult for People?

why is twitter difficult

I do a lot of social media training, which I really enjoy. I work with small business owners, executives, front-lines social media managers, and people who are trying to gain skills for their next job.

I’ve trained on social media strategy, on blogging, and on just about every platform out there: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube. As well as Twitter.

And it’s really remarkable: Every person I’ve ever trained on Twitter seems to think it’s the most difficult and confusing of all the social networks. So I’ve spent some time thinking about why this is the case. Here’s what I’ve concluded on what makes Twitter difficult.

1. Twitter is Open-Source

Unlike Facebook, which has built in apps and metrics and functionality, Twitter is open-source. Anyone can build tools and uses for Twitter that get widely adopted by others (like Hootsuite, my favorite way to use Twitter), and it’s not always easy to figure out what all of those tools and uses are, because they’re not baked right into the platform. Even some of what we think of as native Twitter functions, like hashtags, were homegrown by users.

When you start out on Twitter you only need to learn Twitter, but in fairly short order you then get a handle on some of these outside functions or tools.  Whether it’s a tweet scheduling app, a measurement app, or a trackable link shortener, you won’t get far (as a business tweeter) without the help of some third-party tools.

2. Twitter Is Not a Network

Twitter itself has repeatedly said that it’s not a network, it’s a media platform. Unlike Facebook and LinkedIn, you can follow someone without them following you back. The public nature of everyone’s feed makes it very well suited for non-networked media campaigns and engagements. Certainly, you can use Twitter to network, and it’s a very powerful platform for that, but there are a myriad of other uses for Twitter beyond the networking aspect.

Use Twitter to provide customer service, create a mini-newsmagazine for your business, hold interviews, throw online events, or write a novel. One of my favorite twitterers is @arjunbasu – an author who writes 140-character short stories on Twitter. He’s not engaging socially, he’s creating art with his tweets.  Anyone can follow him and be amused by him. No question, that’s media.

3. Twitter Has a Secret Language

Twitter has so many nuances and little-known tricks, it’s very hard for a new user to figure it out and it may be years before they learn them all.  In part, Twitter was built that way – the 140 character limit necessitates short-form commands and functionality shorthand. It’s kind of like an MS-DOS command prompt, from back in the day.

A few of the little-known or often overlooked native Twitter functions that trip people up, or that they don’t often know about, include:

  • If you use an @username as the very first piece of content in a tweet (if the @ is the first character), that tweet is only seen by that person and anyone who follows you both mutually.  It is amazing to me how many people don’t know this, really through no fault of their own. This is definitely the #1 “insider” thing that I get to teach people.
  • You can follow someone by typing “follow username” (with or without the @ symbol) right into the Compose Tweet box
  • You can message (direct message) someone by typing “d username” (with or without the @symbol) right into the Compose Tweet box
  • Twitter has very useful List functionality built in, which helps segment the people you follow so you can be sure to see the tweets of people who matter most to you. Once you’ve added people to lists, you can view just the tweets of the people on a particular list. This is great for people who say “Twitter moves too fast.”
  • Use Twitter’s Favorites functionality to bookmark tweets you want to refer to or share later. If you Favorite someone’s tweet, they’ll also get a notification (if their notifications are set up to receive them), which will show them that you engaged with their tweet.

My advice to people who are intimidated by or feel they can’t figure out Twitter: be patient. Jump in and start tweeting. It will take a while to build your following, so use that time to connect to people who know you well (and will completely forgive any faux pas you make) and experiment with the platform.  And remember, everyone makes mistakes: there are very few things that are truly dreadful on Twitter.

Now go forth and tweet!  And definitely get in touch with me (here in the comments or via Twitter, natch) if I can answer any questions about Twitter for you.

Social Media Advertising: Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn, Oh My!

Social Media Advertising: Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn, Oh My!

Social Media Advertising: Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn, Oh My!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ever wanted to know how to use social media advertising for your business, particularly your B2B business? Look no further – here’s our guide to advertising on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

We cover general advertising tips, plus capabilities and use for each of the three major social ads platforms.

Feel free to download and share this eBook direct from Slideshare. (Hint: View the Notes for the presentation by clicking on the Notes tab next to comments and statistics.)

And of course, if we can assist with your social media advertising programs, please don’t hesistate to contact us!

Social Media Advertising Overview: Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn from crackerjackmarketing

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Critical Twitter Lessons to Aid Your Marketing

Critical Twitter Lessons to Aid Your Marketing

Critical Twitter Lessons to Aid Your Marketing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Twitter is one of the big boys when it comes to social media marketing. If you’ve yet to begin using it for your business or don’t know how to use it well, this post is for you! The following articles will get you up to speed and help you use your Twitter account as an effective marketing tool.

The 2013 Twitter Marketing Guide

Maybe you’re new to Twitter. Maybe you’ve been using the social media site for years but only for personal connections. If you’re just now considering the social media platform for marketing purposes, this article can help. It provides everything from basic instructions for creating a Twitter profile and understanding Twitter lingo to tips for planning your strategy and building a following. Click here to learn the basics of using Twitter for marketing.

Five Ways to Use Twitter for Marketing That You Might Not Know About

Once you have the basics of Twitter marketing down, you may benefit from some additional ideas for using it for your business. This article provides information about ways to do the following:

  • Connect with mobile users via Twitter
  • Use search options to find relevant opportunities
  • Connect with journalists
  • Improve your search engine rankings

What else will you learn? You’ll also discover how to use your tweets in conjunction with Google Alerts to get search engine traffic and monitor what others are saying about your company. Read more about lesser-known ways to use Twitter.

Avoid These 9 Common Twitter Mistakes

The fact is that everyone makes mistakes. It’s all too easy to make a misstep here and a glaring error there. Fortunately, others have tripped and fallen before you, and you can learn from them. The author of this article, Timothy Carter, provides the details you need to avoid common problems, ranging from posting at the wrong times and sending vague tweets to being boring and messing up your privacy settings. For instance, something as simple as failing to follow other Twitter users is a mistake that may hold you back. Read more about common Twitter mistakes.

10 Lessons from the Top 25 Most Engaged Brands on Twitter

You can learn a lot from the successes of others. According to Mark Fidelman (writing for Forbes), engaging via Twitter requires companies to develop an emotional connection with their followers and effectively spread not their own message but an industry-specific one. Fidelman provides a list of 10 things companies of all sizes can learn from 25 of the most engaged brands on this social media platform. For example, telling stories, working with influencers, and driving emotion are among the top things you can do to better engage your audience. Read the reasons these top 25 brands do engagement so well.

 

What's So Special About Twitter?

What’s So Special About Twitter?

What's So Special About Twitter?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We all know that Twitter is a household name when it comes to social media, but just why is it so special? What makes this social media platform the success it is? I’m a huge, and therefore hugely biased, user and supporter of Twitter, and there are over 200 million other active users.

These are just a few of the ways that Twitter differs from other social platforms and why I think it’s poised for ongoing success.

Twitter As an Everyday News Source

Twitter is quickly becoming an important source of information about events as they happen around the world. Many political analysts have attributed the spread of the Arab Spring to Twitter.  And according to Outside the Beltway, the news of Osama bin Laden’s death hit Twitter before newscasters shared it, coming a full hour before the President addressed the nation.

Some people may even use Twitter as their main source for certain news stories. Tweets about Hurricane Sandy were the lifeline for many, rather than (or in addition to) tuning in to traditional news sources. Perhaps this is because the short chains of information (limited-character tweets) fly so fast and furious that users feel able to keep up with the news as it happens, without really having to break their own strides.

“News,” of course, can include mainstream news as well as news about a local area, a particular business, a group of interest, and even news of friends and family members.

One problem with Twitter as news source is that there are many Twitter-shared hoaxes and much spreading of incorrect information. Still, this issue is not unique to Twitter and is unlikely to cause it to lose any popularity contests when compared with other social media platforms.

Worldwide Leaders Use Twitter

pope benedict pontifex twitter resized 600

Leaders from around the world apparently recognize Twitter as a worthwhile platform. According to DigitalDaya, three fourths of leaders from around the world have a Twitter presence and use it to communicate with their citizens. Based on December 2012 data, 123 world leaders had Twitter accounts – out of 164 countries. Even the Pope now tweets, in 9 languages including Latin. Clearly, Twitter is the mainstream and not solely the mundane.

Twitter for Online Events

Twitter isn’t just about news, however. Like other social media platforms, Twitter is all about engagement and connections. Marketers can take that a step further by creating and participating in Twitter parties. Essentially, a Twitter party is an online event, centered around a particular topic or company, that allows people to virtually gather and discuss a particular subject. To participate, Twitter users tweet using the Twitter party’s hashtag. That hashtag is all that is needed for users to follow the conversation and jump in to actively participate. Brands often use Twitter parties as a way to boost interest in their products and services, increase engagement, and gain followers.

Twitter chats are similar to Twitter parties, except the conversation focuses on a topic of interest that isn’t necessarily associated with a brand. Twitter parties are more likely to be focused on a brand’s promotional interests. However, some businesses do sponsor Twitter chats, getting some exposure for their business while keeping the conversations to more general topics.

But Will Twitter Make Money?

Of course, what investors want to see is that Twitter will make money. Valued at around $11 billion, Twitter is going to have a huge IPO, maybe as soon as the beginning of 2014. The platform demonstrates plenty of potential, showing user growth, making changes (such as to its photo app) to remain competitive, and adjusting its promoted tweets to draw more clicks. Some other tech companies have had less-than-stellar initial public performances, but some experts speculate that Twitter may just have the right things going for it to excite investors.

How do you think Twitter stands out among other social media platforms? What makes it so different and special?

 

10 Ways Businesses Can Use Twitter

10 Ways Businesses Can Use Twitter

10 Ways Businesses Can Use Twitter

Wondering if Twitter can help your business? The answer is a resounding, “Yes!” Read on for 10 ways you can use Twitter for your small business:

1. Build Brand Awareness

One of the top benefits of using Twitter for business is that it helps build brand awareness. With Twitter, you can share information about your brand with consumers far and wide, reaching out to customers and prospects in your local area, city or state; across the country; and around the world. Even a very small company can build big brand awareness with Twitter.

2. Monitor Conversations

Just think of how effective your business would be if you knew what others were saying about it. Twitter offers you the chance to monitor conversation about your business in real time. Then, you can take what you learn and use it to build on your strengths and make improvements as necessary.

3. Promote Content

Twitter makes it very easy to promote your content. Whether you have an informative website, engaging blog, instructional video, or moving presentation to share, your Twitter account provides the perfect opportunity to drive traffic there.

4. Engage Your Audience

Often, businesses do a good deal of talking at their prospects simply because of the marketing approaches they choose. Twitter, however, allows you to do things a bit differently and engage with the people you seek to influence. When you focus on engagement, customers and prospects feel more connected with and loyal to your business.

5. Find Business Contacts

Twitter is a great resource for connecting with other business people. Whether you’re looking for business people with whom to network, potential partners or people to trade referrals with, Twitter makes connecting with others easy.

6. Keep Up to Date

Keeping up with industry news and updates can be important in making the right choices for your business. Thanks to Twitter, it’s easy to stay informed of the latest news and trends.

7. Demonstrate Your Desire to Help

Consumers often feel fatigued when hit with just another sales pitch. Twitter allows you a way to work up to the sale by sharing information and resources. This encourages customers and prospects to view you as helpful rather than simply after the sale.

8. Provide Customer Service

Twitter isn’t just for chit chat and sharing, you can also use it for customer service. Outdo the competition by providing fast, responsive support online.

9. Find Your Newest Employee

Use Twitter to find your next star employee. Just think, your followers are people who are interested or involved in your industry. At least some among them will be interested in your available job.

10. Enjoy an SEO Boost

Links from social media accounts to your website help boost your search engine rankings and drive traffic to your website. And when your links are retweeted again and again? Expect to get even more love from the search engines.

How have you used Twitter to help your business?

twitter for writers

Twitter for Writers

twitter for writers

I recently presented “Twitter for Writers” at the Business of Pet Writing Conference and at the ASJA 41st Annual Writers Conference.

Twitter is one of my favorite social media topics to present on; as a longtime user (I joined with my first, now dormant, account in early 2007) I’ve found it consistently the most valuable tool in my arsenal. It’s my go-to resource for news and information daily; I’ve learned about nearly every major world event in the last three or four years through my Twitter stream. I’ve also made amazing connections through Twitter, including wonderful friends as well as clients. Accordingly, I feel pretty passionate about why everyone should use Twitter (though I know not everyone will) and I think that passion comes through when I present about it.

This presentation is very brief; I only have about 40 minutes to present and 10 minutes for questions, so it’s a pretty streamlined overview of why writers should use Twitter with some tips and tricks on how to use it effectively.

If you’re a writer, journalist, an aspiring writer, or, well, really anyone who’s looking for quick ideas and solid takeaways on using Twitter, I think you’ll appreciate this.

If you’re interested in more, read the following blog posts:

Steve Buttry: Twitter Tips for Journalists

Tweepi: 5 Twitter Tips for Journalists

Change the World With Words: Twenty Twitter Tips for Writers

Poets & Writers: Thirty Three Twitter Feeds to Follow

Daily Writing Tips: 40 Twitter Hashtags for Writers

Carrie Mumford: Twitter for Writers: Powerful Tool or Evil Time Sucker?

I’m always looking for other great posts to add to my Twitter arsenal – please add them in the comments. And if you were at my presentation, please reach out on Twitter and say hi!