How to use Twitter for your business
You’ve worked out which social networks are best for your business and want to invest more in Twitter, but aren’t seeing the results you were hoping for? Our handy tips will help you get the most from this social media platform. So without further ado, here is how to use Twitter for your business.
Find the best time to tweet
One of my all time favourite tools, and only partially due to its fun name, is FollowerWonk. With a free version available, it’s a handy way to check whether you’re tweeting at the times your followers are most active. Are your followers particularly active between 8 and 9am? Ensure you prioritise content easily digested whilst commuting. If you’re B2B you may assume it’s best to tweet during business hours, but maybe your followers are night owls, preferring to discover content last thing. Adjust your post times and monitor any changes in engagement.
There have been many studies showing the positive impact including imagery in tweets can have on your Twitter engagement metrics. This is more than a simple link preview, which isn’t very appealing, but could be images, gifs or video. This article from HubSpot has a wealth of great insights showing the power of visuals in marketing. They report that tweets with an image receive 150% more retweets than those without.
Creating imagery for Twitter can be costly, but there are ways to get great results for free. Consider using a tool such as Canva, which allows you to create images and infographics online. Simply by selecting a compelling quote from your content and using a clean font and relevant background you can quickly create a professional visual to increase your tweet’s appeal.
Gifs are an easy way to experiment with visuals as they’re so readily available, but try to resist using them all the time (we know it’s hard). GifMe is a great tool for bookmarking gifs, with really helpful tagging features for searching at a later date.
Connect with Twitter chats
Many industries have regular Twitter chats, where questions on a specific topic are asked and answered during a set time using a specific hashtag. Whilst more of a commitment it can be a great way to find like minded folk and potential customers.
This list is a great place to start and find one that’s right for your business. If you can’t find a suitable chat, consider starting your own, but bear in mind the commitment this would be. There’s no scheduling tweets to make this work.
Monitor competitors and your industry
I recommend a free tool like TweetDeck to keep an eye on what competitors are up to, as well as what’s being discussed in the industry or your local area. Simply log in using Twitter and create a dashboard made up of columns showing what matters the most to you. Here are some ideas of columns to add to get you started:
- Your tweets – helpful for spotting potential errors
- Your mentions
- Your direct messages
- Tweets from sister companies and partners
- Competitors’ tweets (do this by setting up a Twitter list of your competitors but best make it private first so they don’t know they’ve been added!)
- Tweets from industry leaders and publications (another Twitter list but no need to make it private if you give it a flattering name such as ‘[industry] movers and shakers’ – this may be enough to get their attention and a valuable follow)
- Search results for tweets about your local area. I like to have a column for a search for Brighton + free, just in case there’s a free burger to be had, but you may want to use it to find local issues relevant to your potential customers.
Find potential customers
Work in recruitment? Search Twitter for ‘job [your location]’ to discover potential job seekers. Or how about searching for ‘recommend [product type]’ or ‘recommend [service you offer]’ to find people searching for your offering. Set these columns up in TweetDeck and check in throughout the day for potential opportunities to give advice or offer your services. Just don’t be all salsey and in people’s face. You want to come off as helpful and generous with your knowledge. Building trust around your brand is key, so when you’re thinking about how to use Twitter for you business, make sure your strategy evolves around cultivating relationships.
Double check your hashtags
Hashtags should generally be used in 1 of 4 ways: to have more people discover your content (popular hashtags), to participate in a wider conversation, collate content around a theme, event or campaign (branded hashtags) or for entertainment where they’re far too long to ever be used, but that’s partly the joke.
Sometimes, what feels like should be a commonly used hashtag sadly isn’t, so it always pays to double check. Hashtagify is a useful tool for this, but you can also search for your hashtag in Twitter and select ‘latest tweets’ to get an idea of how often it’s used. If it’s not used frequently it’s unlikely to benefit you, but also be mindful of excessively popular hashtags as your tweets may get drowned out.
If you’re wanting a branded hashtag, perhaps for an event, be sure to check it hasn’t been used elsewhere. Awkwardly one of our competitor’s hashtags for an event was also used by Linkin Park fans, combining 2 very different topics. As well as being unique make sure it’s also succinct to allow users to make the most of their remaining characters.
Pin your most important tweets
Pinning tweets can be an easy win in highlighting your priority content to your audience. However, ensure you update this regularly. It’s easy to think a pinned tweet is the most recent post and people may mistakenly think you haven’t tweeted in months and unfollow. Take a moment to double check any pinned tweet is relevant and recent, or add a pin if you haven’t already.
Review your automation tools
Not all Twitter tools were created equal. One of my major pet peeves is seeing automated tweets along the lines of ‘thanks @newfollower for following. Want this FREE>> [spammy link]’ – who has ever seen this and felt like they’d genuinely been engaged with? Either thank followers manually and personally or don’t at all. Same goes for ‘my most engaged followers of the week’ and automated #followfriday tweets. Building real relationships will get far better results than generic automated posts. Note Twitter is also penalising bots, so you could find yourself in hot water using certain tools. Platforms are always tweaking their algorithms, so how you use Twitter for your business in 2018 may be very different from how you use it next year.
Monitor the changes
If you haven’t already, I highly recommend taking a look at Twitter Analytics. It’s great for seeing which tweets have worked best in terms of clicks, retweets and likes, among other metrics, as well as monitoring changes in your following. Have a look at your typical number of retweets, likes and reach (how many people saw your post) and keep checking back to see if these increase after you use some of the above tips.
If you want to learn more about the strategies we’ve mentioned, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Every brand is unique, so when you’re looking for how to use Twitter for your business, make sure it’s not the same as everyone’s else feed. Here at Luku, we’ll help you stand out and resonate with your target audience. You can also follow us on Twitter to find more social media marketing advice. We’ll also help you stay on top of the latest trends and major social media updates.