Best Twitter Content Strategy for Small Business in 2015
By Bojana Rajić On April 2, 2015
Best Twitter Content Strategy for Small Business
If you’re a small-business owner, you might have a strong feeling that you should be using Twitter and other social networks to promote your service or your product, but nearly everything you read about doing that is written for people who already know what they’re doing and you just can’t get past the jargon to understand what you need to know. So you need to discover the best twitter content strategy for small business.
We’re going to try to de-mystify the topic for you here, so keep reading.
If you are already using Twitter, you probably have doubts that your tweeting is as effective as it could be.
Chances are you’re not using Twitter effectively, if at all, as most small businesses aren’t. As a matter of fact, it is estimated that nearly two-thirds of small businesses are not using content marketing of all kinds, including Twitter, as well as they could be. (Read more about that here.)
For best results in using Twitter to promote your small business, adopt a thoughtful and methodical approach. Tweeting in a hit-or-miss kind of way is bound to give you hit-and-miss results.
Content is critical
Your tweets should be unique and interesting, informative and entertaining, and they should provide your customers who follow you with information they can use. While you don’t want to be constantly pitching, you can and should send out tweets that are relevant to your business.
Keep your tweets light and conversational, and don’t forget to bring along your sense of humor
If you’re constantly pitching, you’ll lose Twitter followers—who, after all, are a segment of your customers and potential customers—because no one wants to be sold to all of the time.
On the other hand, you can use Twitter to learn more about your customers’ problems and offer simple solutions. For instance, if you’re a dentist you might offer an idea for whitening teeth at home with the use of household products. If you’re a mechanic, you could give quick and simple hints about aspects of auto maintenance that your followers can use right away.
Know Your Audience
While it’s important, promoting your small business on social media can be a tricky matter.
Some of your customers gravitate toward Twitter, while others are more inclined to check their Facebook page frequently, and still others avoid social media altogether, except for maybe email.
Only a small portion of your customer or client base will use a variety of the social platforms—Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, and whatever else is coming up next that none of us has heard of yet.
Twitter’s not for everyone
I talked with one small-business owner, a music teacher in a small town, who quickly informed me that he didn’t know of a single one of his clients who used Twitter. If he were to try to promote his business on Twitter, he insisted, he’d just be wasting his time.
All the same, I told him, you might want to give it a try and see what happens. You never know, really, until you try it.
Never forget that you’re dealing with People
Human beings, as you know from your own personal experience, can be moody and unpredictable. They want what they want and they want it now.
Above all, each person is unique. Different people like to get their content in different ways.
People connect through social media because human beings long for connection, and we’ll use whatever means are available to us—that most appeal to us—so that we can do that.
The best way to know who uses what is to ask
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Social networks are social.
When you have a chance to speak directly with someone who is a customer of yours, ask about their use of social media. You won’t be able to do this with each of your customers, most likely, but if you listen closely and pay attention, you’ll soon start getting a good idea of how to use each of the social platforms more effectively.
To learn more about using social media to promote your business, I recommend Jason Miller’s book, Welcome to the Funnel.
Twitter users want it fast and quick
One thing I can tell you is that your clientele who use Twitter want quick gratification. Quick, sharp, lively, and to the point does the trick in tweeting. If you don’t give them what they’re looking for in the first few seconds, they’re off to the next one before you can take your next breath. Don’t look for patient souls here.
And what do they want? More importantly, what do you want to give them?
Think “sharable content”
You want to come up with original content so compelling that your followers won’t be able to help themselves. They will have to share it with their followers.
And just how can you do that?
First of all, don’t talk about yourself and your product endlessly. Above all, you need to entertain. While you can certainly focus your tweets on your industry and your business, if you’re not giving your followers a giggle or an “Oh, wow!” on a regular basis, they will leave you in the dust.
What you want your tweets to do is put your name and your face in front of your clients who use Twitter on a fairly regular basis so that they’ll remember you when they need your product or service
On the other hand, don’t overdo it. One or two tweets a day is probably enough. Any more than that and you risk alienating your followers.
Where can you find useful content for tweeting?
Don’t think that you have to have a full-time in-house writer or that you have to write all the time yourself. Be efficient and effective with what you already have.
Have you written an article or an ebook lately? Do you blog? Chances are, you already have good content lying around that you can dust off and repurpose for Twitter.
Look around with a critical eye; dig through your files one more time. Find useful content that’s already written that you can pick apart and use for all the social platforms, including Twitter.
Ask for feedback about your product or service
Ask for feedback in some of your tweets in order to elicit replies. Try to word your questions in such a way so that you get mostly positive responses because you don’t want to pollute your Twitter feed with a bunch of negativity. Ask something like, “How has using my service (or product) solved a problem for you, and what problem(s) did it solve?”
Not only will the responses help you to fine-tune your product or service, they will also help you to fine-tune your social media marketing.
Don’t leave your followers hanging. If someone responds to one of your tweets, respond. At least hit the star to favorite their response. That’s like saying “thank you,” or “you’re welcome.” It’s social grease.
And if someone you follow tweets something relevant to your business, don’t be afraid to retweet their tweet. Social media is a two-way street, and you need to participate accordingly.
Don’t disappear for long periods of time
Be consistent. Tweet on a regular basis without flooding your followers’ Twitter feeds. A tweet a day is a good rule of thumb.
Test and Refine
Find out what works best by testing. The experts call this “Split A/B testing,” an arcane-sounding moniker that can be a little off-putting. All it really means, though, is that you test for effectiveness by making small changes in your tweets to see which version works best.
Do your followers respond best to humor?
Do they prefer useful tips?
Which photo or video of yours got the best responses? (Read more below about using visuals.)
Use the results of your testing to hone and refine your tweets so that they hit the mark every time, or at least most of the time.
And just what is “the mark”?
You want your tweets to get faved and retweeted. You want them to get noticed by more and more people, people who are or can become your clients and your customers. That’s the whole point. If you forget that, you’re just wasting your time.
If you’re still having trouble wrapping your head around all of this, go to MyHelpster.com. Those guys have a Twitter service that can automate at least some of this for you, providing relevant content, posting on your behalf, and so on. Check them out.
Use visual content
Nothing gets more attention than visual content. Nothing. But it’s important that you insert visuals properly.
Social Media Examiner made this point so eloquently and succinctly that we quote them directly here, including the visuals they used. (To read more, click here.)
Ensure images and videos show up
Buffer had similar results when they conducted an A/B test using tweets with and without images. They found that tweets with images increased the number of retweets by 150% and the number of clicks by 18%.
Photos and videos are important for engagement, but how you add them to your tweets matters. Twitter’s Image Expand feature only works if you tweet via the Twitter app or the website itself. Image Expand is useful because it attracts users’ eyes within the feed.
An example of an expanded image tweet within the Twitter stream.
Samsung UK used a Vine video to promote a product.
Twitter recently introduced the option to add animated GIFs to tweets (again, directly through twitter.com or its mobile app—you can’t use third-party tools just yet). GIFs can be viewed on the Twitter website, iPhone and Android, but not on tablets or through clients like TweetDeck.
With so many options available, it’s silly not to add a video or image to your tweets to enhance your marketing message.
(Once again, a tip of the hat to socialmediaexaminer.com.)
Keep content front and center, and keep on tweeting
Finally, keep your content fresh and lively (even if you’re repurposing content), stay in touch with your followers, and you’ll soon be using Twitter with the best of them to pull customers into your business and keep them there.
Now that you deepened you Twitter content strategy knowledge, you should continue exploring other useful resources. Start from Twitter marketing infographic, which is the base, and look for the tips for twitter business promotion. After you get some traffic, look for quality followers considering that they are your true potential users. You can also get free Twitter report here.