In his book Tweet Naked, internet marketing expert and social media agency CEO Scott Levy provides the critical information entrepreneurs need to develop a social media strategy that will grow their brand and business. In this edited excerpt, the author offers cutting-edge Twitter marketing tips and advice.
Do you want to be a Pro Bowl rookie or a veteran? How you are going to do your career is similar to being a rookie or a veteran. You can go about your day-to-day business and stay average, or you can learn, practice, train, and try to find every possible advantage over your competition.
To me, the following are just things you have to do to participate in everyday life on social media. For others, these may seem like advanced techniques and tactics that are at a higher level of knowledge and maybe even desire when it comes to social media. But if you want to step up your game and get the most out of your investment (time and money) in social media, take it to the next level with these nine tips and tricks.
1. Follow the tips. Twitter isn’t just about your tweets; it’s also a great source of information about your competitors. Track their activity, find out what topics they’re discussing. This will give you an update on how to expand your own audience and what these people are looking for. It may even show you where your competitors are outperforming you. By tweaking the tweet a little, you can attract these subscribers to your company.
2. Save the sales pitch. Don’t get carried away using Twitter as a sales tool. Instead, use it to build customer loyalty and offer valuable information to your followers. Excessive marketing will just leave a sour taste in your subscribers’ mouths, and you may even lose them if their feed is too clogged with promotional offers. View yourself as a resource, not a door-to-door salesperson.
3. Be concise. Posting links and content is fine, but Twitter users love brevity, so be sure to shorten your links with a referral service. http://bit.ly is a good service for measuring click-through rates and effectiveness, but if you don’t use something like that, Twitter will automatically shorten your links with its built-in T.CO shortener.
4. Respond with a dot. Twitter’s filters allow users to view replies only if they follow every side of the conversation. But if you start your reply with a dot, the post won’t start with @ – it will be treated as a separate tweet and all your followers will see it. Breaking grammar rules has never been so enjoyable.
5. Lose a few characters. Yes, 140 characters is the technical limit on Twitter, but all the cool kids now write only 125 or less. Short, succinct tweets will get your followers’ attention, not get lost in their feeds. The more characters left, the easier it is for people to retweet and add their comments.
6. Ask questions. People want to feel that you value their opinion, and asking questions, even simple ones, usually gets more feedback.
7. Be a resource. Providing value and being perceived as a resource is a surefire way to build quality followers and get retweets. In a sea of meaningless and useless tweets, if you share quality, interesting content, you will stand out. If you’re all about sharing what you’ve eaten, or just having personal conversations, you may well lose subscribers.
8. A picture is worth a thousand tweets. I can’t stress enough how important photos are on any social network, and Twitter is no exception. Twitter now displays images in your newsfeed, and if you don’t take advantage of this benefit, you’re missing out. An image attached to any tweet is sure to increase visibility and engagement.
9. Don’t be too good to people. No matter how famous or busy you are, don’t be that person who thinks you’re too good to respond to someone. I’m usually busy, but I still make time every day to respond to every person (that I see) who tweets me, thanks me, tells me they read my book, etc. I believe in building my fans and brand champions one interaction at a time. It’s amazing how one quick conversation or response can make someone feel appreciated and turn them into a brand champion or personal fan.