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More Basic Twitter Tips for Small Business beginners

By Anne-Marie Watson
Published Jan 10, 2012

Following on from our earlier article on 4 Basic Twitter Tips for Small Business beginners, here are some further useful suggestions to help make being successful on Twitter even easier.

1. Keep your tweets short - no more than 100 characters

It's hard to believe at first but 140 is more than enough to say what you need, when you are careful. Life today is about brevity. No-one has time for anything too long (we are all becoming less patient because we have less time). Once you have the hang of using the 140 characters or less, make it a further habit to use no more than 100-110 characters maximum on every tweet.

This is one of the most important lessons to learn up front about Twitter. Unless you leave room for others to add their retweet message (RT @username and perhaps room for a hashtag), it's far less likely others will retweet you. Nobody much is interested it seems, in editing your tweet to make space for their add-ons, so if there's no extra space available, they just won't bother. Being retweeted is key to growing your follower base and developing interactions with others, so ignore this rule at your peril. This is one of the most important tips anyone has ever given me on using Twitter effectively.

2. Use key words in your profile and in your tweets through the day to improve search results.

Aside from building an image, adding a profile gives you a golden opportunity to use a few well chosen keywords, which increase your chances of being found through search. If one of your keywords is e.g. SEO, ensure you include that in your profile description. Then during the day, use this keyword in some of your tweets to increase your searchability again.

3. Make your content consistent, relevant and fresh

This should go without saying but Twitter news is old news in the blink of an eyelid, so if you want to be the one with ‘breaking news', don't take too long to tweet it. Also as you gather followers, take care that you deliver tweet content- in style, frequency and quality - that is consistent, so your followers can come to rely on you for that information. This will build trust over time from your connections. If you don't deliver consistent or good content, you will simply lose your followers. 

4. Nurture interactions and build relationships
While getting more followers is always something to aim for, more important than this to get interaction with your follower base. While you cannot read or react to every tweet, do filter out those which you can relate to or have a conversation with. Always try to thank people for retweets or mentions as this is just good manners. It is also considered good etiquette to thank new followers for choosing to follow you as well.

5. Use 3rd party apps to automate and manage your accounts

Perhaps others picked this up quicker but it took me a few weeks to work out that the only way I could stay on top of my twitter activity (sending messages, retweeting, shortening urls to take up less space etc) was to use third party tools. There are lots around today, and often they do different things, so review each one for their own merits versus your own needs. Some of the key programs available include Tweet Deck, Twitter feed, Socialoomph, Hootsuite and Seesmic amongst many more. You can read a more detailed list of Twitter tools available at:

1. http://www.socialable.co.uk/20-vital-twitter-management-tools-for-2012/

2. http://www.tripwiremagazine.com/2010/01/30-best-tools-for-building-and-managing-your-twitter-popularity.html.

6. Be patient - it doesn't happen overnight

One thing about Twitter is that it takes time to develop a following and even more so to get interactions. It is tempting when you first start to give up at first, when you see no-one retweeting you or responding to your comments and questions. Hang in there as will improve. You just need to have patience to stay the course and if you are doing the other things mentioned right, you will eventually be rewarded.

 

 

 

© 2012 Southside Marketing Solutions

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