Social Media Basics, Part 2: Twitter Best Practices

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The go-to place for over 326 million active users, Twitter has made its way to the list of top social media networks today. Combining blogging, texting, and instant messaging, this platform has so much to offer for individuals, celebrities, and businesses alike. Almost everyone is on Twitter! So, utilizing its features is a great move to advance your business. The question is: With over 500 million tweets posted daily, how do you make your business stand out? Here are the Twitter best practices, to get you started.

Twitter Best Practices: 11 Tips

1. Optimize Your Profile

If you want people to find you, you have to make your account “searchable.” Otherwise, the content you worked hard to create will be all for naught. A good social media account — Twitter included — begins with a well-optimized profile. Let’s run through the basics.

Create a Unique Handle

A Twitter handle, to those who aren’t familiar with the term, is the name you choose for your account. It starts with “@” and is followed by your username. An example is @eclincher.

When creating a Twitter handle, you have to remember these three things: keep it relevant, simple, and easy to remember.

Keep it Relevant

Your Twitter handle should be relevant to your business.

The most practical option is to use your company name for the handle. Take Pepsi and Sephora for example — their username is exactly the same as their company name.

If someone else is already using your company name on Twitter, you can make a few modifications. One alternative is to add a short extension that’s related to your business right after the company name. For instance, you can add the word “app” if you’re selling an application, or “US” to indicate which country your business is from.

Keep it Simple

Make your Twitter handle short and simple. Avoid using special characters or numbers, especially if it’s unrelated to your company name.

Make it Easy to Remember

Choose a Twitter name that’s easy for your followers and clients to recall. Adding a bunch of irrelevant text to your handle in an effort to ensure that it’s unique can be counterproductive. Stick as close to your business name and industry as much as possible.

Pay Close Attention to Your Bio

Twitter only allows 160 characters for your bio. Forget paragraphs! Twitter wants you to express all the things you wish to tell people about your business in just a few words.

So, how do you maximize it?

First, cover the basics. Input your website URL and location so people will know where and how to reach you. Second, tell people what you do, and be specific. And finally, be SEO-friendly. Using hashtags related to your product or service can help make your page more searchable.

2. Pin Tweets

Pinned tweets are one of the first things people see first when they land on your page. Choose one that’s engaging, eye-catching, and optimized with strategic hashtags.

3. Build a Relevant Following

Looking at the follower count of famous brands on Twitter can be intimidating. The feeling you get when you compare their over 100,000 followers to your meager 1,000 can be downright depressing. This can lead some to using the follow/unfollow strategy and even buying followers.

Friends, here’s a wake-up call: buying followers will not do your business any good. Yes, it may increase that number, but that’s the only thing it’ll contribute. It’s only to satisfy vanity.

Twitter is more than just a numbers game. Having 1,000 authentic followers who are interested or relevant to your business beats having 10,000 who aren’t.

We want engagement and eventually a conversion. If the people who follow you aren’t your target market, then there’s a very low chance of them responding to your content. 

Here are some strategies you can use to build a relevant following.

Follow Your Industry Leaders

Know who the big names in your industry are and follow them. After you’ve done that, start following their followers. Why? Because the people following these industry leaders are most likely interested in your industry. Furthermore, there’s a high chance of them following you back.

Shout Out to Your New Followers

Mentioning new followers in tweet can help you gain more exposure. Plus, it’ll make your followers feel more special. A short shout-out can do wonders.

Follow Users Who Mention You

If another Twitter user is posting positive reviews or has mentioned your brand in their post, follow them. There’s a high probability of them following you back. You can also retweet their post. 

Organize a Contest

People love games, especially if the prize is attractive. If you want to gain followers that matter to your business, you can organize a fun contest that’s related to your brand.

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For example, you can ask people to tweet photos of them using your product, or invite people to answer a question and include your hashtag in their tweet, and then, give the prize to the best entry. There are many creative ways to do this! 

The prize could be your product — so people can try it out — or an item that the people you want to reach would love. Avoid giving away generic prizes that everyone would want to get their hands on — like cellphones or laptops — unless it’s your product.

4. Engage With Your Audience

Fourth on our list of Twitter best practices is engagement.

Engagement is paramount when it comes to social media. It’s all about connecting with people and building relationships with your followers. We’ve got some tips to help you increase engagement.

Create Captivating Content

Tweet content that people would be interested in. Catch their attention. Think of something that you yourself, as a Twitter user, would want to like, share, or comment on.

Keep it Short

Focus on one specific topic per tweet. Avoid adding too many sentences. If you want (or need) to add more information, you can include a link to your website or article.

Use Visuals

Did you know that tweets with photos or videos are three times more likely to get engagement? Adding an eye-catching image can make your tweet more appealing, and as a result, help boost engagement.

Tweet Trending Events

Events are trending because of a reason: a large number of people are talking about them on social media. Take advantage of trending events and use them to further your Twitter objectives. If applicable, find ways to connect it to your brand.

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Tweeting about trending events enables your brand to show up in the list of similar tweets. It makes you visible to the people who are reading, waiting for news, or tweeting about the trend.

Ask Questions and Run Polls

Encourage your followers to join the conversation. Posting questions or running Twitter polls will not only improve engagement but also provide a means for your business to know what your customers think.

It doesn’t always have to be serious, though. Occasional just-for-fun polls and queries are also great for variety.

Add a Hashtag

Hashtags are the keywords of Twitter. If you want to make your post more searchable, add one or two hashtags before you publish.

Use a Call-to-Action

Don’t be afraid to add a call-to-action (CTA) to your tweet to encourage user engagement. Here are some examples of calls-to-action that are receiving a good response.

  • Click Here to Download: Do you have a book or an app you want to share? Adding a “download” CTA can help increase user engagement and website traffic.
  • Read More: Include this CTA in a teaser tweet along with the link to your article to inspire users to click and read more.
  • Follow: Do you have a Twitter contest or promotion you want to hype? Add a “follow” CTA along with your Twitter handle to help increase followers.

5. Tweet Multiple Times a Day

Keep your Twitter account active. Find the best time for posting and then tweet accordingly. eClincherhas tools to help you keep your social presence up to date. Publish and schedule your posts using the Smart Calendarto manage your time better and improve efficiency.

6. Reply ASAP

A lot of people prefer to reach out to companies through social media. Think about it as the new help hotline. As much as possible, try to reduce your customers’ waiting time and keep the conversation going. Reply immediately to mentions, tweets, or DMs.

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7. Initiate Conversations

If people aren’t engaging with you, then engage with them first. Initiate conversations. Make it a habit to spend a few minutes each day to respond to other people’s tweets, retweet posts (especially those with positive feedback where your brand is mentioned), and engage with your followers. Build a community.

8. Promote Twitter Across Networks

Let your clients and followers know that you are on Twitter. Add a link to your company’s Twitter page on your website, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and on all your other social media accounts.

If you have posters or ads running, insert your Twitter handle (and your other social media accounts) so people know where to reach you online.

9. Measure Your Progress

The only way to know how your brand is doing on Twitter is to measure your progress. Analyzing your metrics enables you to identify which posts work, where your audience is coming from, and so much more. The right information can help you build and improve your strategy. eClincher can help you with this.

10. Know Your Goals

Last (but certainly not least!) on our list of Twitter best practices is know your goals.

Things can get overwhelming at first, and that’s normal. In order to keep everything on track and to prevent things from going haywire, it’s best to establish a list of your Twitter goals. 

Now, remember how goals are supposed to be? They need to be SMART — specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. Your Twitter goals are no exception.

Here are some examples.

  • Tweet three times a day for a month.
  • Increase audience engagement by 20% in one month.
  • Retweet two brand-related articles per week.

11. Keep Learning

Twitter is constantly evolving — the algorithm changes and new features are added to improve user experience. There’s always something new to learn and discover. The only thing we can do is to stay updated and keep learning.

For now, try out these Twitter best practices and share your progress with us. Have any tips to add? Let us know!