While it can be a revenue generator for some businesses, that’s only one reason you should engage and and build a presence there.
Here’s the most important reason: as we’ve said, Twitter is a real-time social network. If you ever need to get the news out right now, you’ll be glad you’ve got a global megaphone.
If you Google “twitter saved lives” you’ll discover that Twitter’s been used effectively in many different kinds of social emergency. While we hope that none of us ever need to use Twitter in a life-threatening situation, it can happen.
What about a business emergency? Here’s a proviso:
While Twitter has had remarkable results in times of crisis, companies that jump in just when an emergency is breaking have joined too late. Their customers don’t know they are there.
Let’s look at five tips which will help you to fall in love with Twitter. The more you use it, the more effective you’ll find it.
1. Use Twitter, even if you “don’t know how”
If your first reaction to Twitter is “huh?” don’t worry about it. Everyone feels the same way at first. The easiest way to get started is to import those of your contacts who have Twitter accounts. Twitter itself has some useful “get started” tips.
Start tweeting. You can tweet news, tips, quotes, fun information, images, videos… anything you like.
Check your competitors’ Twitter feeds. What are they tweeting about?
Over a few days, as you use Twitter, you’ll begin to see patterns, and will develop your own ways of using it.
2. Thank people regularly
Thanking people is easy to do, and it’s appreciated as much on Twitter as it is everywhere else.
Thank fellow users for tweets which you find helpful, for retweets, for mentioning you, and for fun tweets. Mentioning someone (@username) means that they will see your mention if they’re following you.
3. Search and follow: use keywords, favorite and retweet
You can search Twitter via the search field at the top of your Twitter page, and also via Advanced search. Here’s Twitter’s list of Advanced search operators.
Search on keywords relevant to your business. Follow useful accounts, and favorite and retweet tweets.
4. Smile! You’re allowed to have fun, even on a business account
Share entertaining, as well as informative material. Inspire your followers with quotes, and images.
5. The listing secret: create public and private lists
Twitter lists are powerful: you can form your own groups, either public or private. These groups can consist of anyone you choose, even if you don’t follow their account.
You can create lists for customers, media contacts, competition monitoring – anything you choose. If you’re interested in a topic like SEO, for example, you can create a list of your favorite SEO bloggers.
Twitter can be a powerful business tool. The more you use it, the more useful you’ll find it. You never know, you might just fall in love with it. :-)
Join Angela on Google+, and on Twitter: @angee