With approximately 500 million users and an average of 400 million tweets sent per day, Twitter is undoubtedly one of the most popular social media platforms. But what’s in it for owners of small businesses, and how do you get started?
Twitter is probably the most effective social media tool for real-time communication. Target market & client inclusive.
— NotJustOk App 4 iOS (@OvieO) November 22, 2012
Why, How, When and What to Tweet
First of all, Why?
Well, for small businesses Twitter is a FREE way of communicating with 500 million potential customers (ok, so they won’t all be in your area, but some of them will be).
You can use it to promote your new website content. Not many people are going to check your site every day to see if you’ve put up anything new, but a lot of those Twitter users will be checking their timeline everyday, and if they are interested in what you’ve got to say they will see your post.
How? And When…
Some people use automated Twitter tools to schedule tweets and even automatically respond to others. If you’re just getting started it is probably best to keep control of your own tweets, and you don’t need to tweet that often. Some key influencers tweet up to 10 times an hour, and many keen tweeters aim for 5-a-day. But you’re still trying to run your business, so once a day is a good start, and you can come up with a weekly schedule to help focus your mind on what to tweet.
You can get a free Twitter app for your smartphone so you can use idle moments – waiting in a queue, on the train, eating your sandwiches – to check your timeline and see what’s new.
The main thing to focus on is tweeting quality content that your followers will find useful, thought provoking or entertaining. This is your brand’s reputation at stake, so make sure your content lives up to your image. Promote your blog posts to build your reputation as an expert in your field.
— Louise Busby (@webmissB) July 30, 2014
Behind the scenes videos, hot-off-the-press news, examples of your work and special offers are all good ideas. You can also share industry news and retweet content from those you follow, if you think it’s consistent with your business objectives.
Twitter publish a free guide to help small business owners get started, so you’ve got no excuse!