We recently did a survey of small business owners and we found that their least favorite marketing tool was Twitter.
Twitter is an odd bird, pun intended.
A lot of people who use Twitter are not sure what to make of it and those that do not use it are not sure how to join in or if they should join in.
Twitter is a lot like drinking water from a fire hose —- the stream of data that goes rushing by can seem daunting and outright confusing.
So I'm not going to tell you in this brief video HOW TO use Twitter. That's best left for another article.
WHO SHOULD USE TWITTER?
What I will tell you is this: If you're a B to B company and you're not using LinkedIn, I would definitely use LinkedIn before using Twitter. And if you're a B to C company and you're not using Facebook, I would certainly do that before getting involved with Twitter.
Because if you are using Facebook and LinkedIn consistently they both have easy to use apps that can connect your accounts so that your LinkedIn and Facebook posts will post automatically to Twitter. But again, how to use Twitter is another story for another time. Just know, right now, that it CAN be done.
But maybe you're already using LinkedIn and Facebook and you're even dabbling with Twitter, too.
HOW TO GET THE MOST OUT OF TWITTER
Here's the bottom line: if you're using Twitter to send tweets about your business, make sure some of the tweets link to your own site. It's not good to constantly tweet about yourself.
Share relevant industry news in addition to info about your business. Mix it up. The reason tweeting can help your website is that the search engines, like Google, now give more value to sites that have, what's called, "social media signals."
IT'S ALL ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA SIGNALS
Social media signals can be from Twitter, Google Plus, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.
Links coming and going from Twitter in and out from your site are indications to the search engines that your site is relevant and engaging, and will be given preference in the search engine results pages over sites that do NOT have social media activity.
And the reason Twitter can help your search engine rankings is because it's like sending traffic and backlinks to your own site.
It shows activity and engagement with other users and the Internet at large. And regardless of what you think of it, Google, Yahoo and Bing are now all giving more credence to sites with social media activity.
So it's more about, what Google wants, Google gets! Give Google what it wants to get what you want — better search engine results.
TWO THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND ABOUT USING TWITTER
So two things to keep in mind to maximize your Twitter experience: make sure you follow other relevant people, companies and entities. Following them will often get you return follows. Not always, of course, but more kindly.
Once you have hundreds or even thousands of followers they will read your tweets and, more importantly, click through to your content.
Secondly, use a third party tool like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck to post your tweets. The reason? you can preschedule them in advance to go out several times a day for a week if you wanted, plus, most importantly, they offer stats and reporting to show you which tweets of yours were clicked on, retweeted, favored, etc.
This will help you understand what type of content people are interested in reading and where you should devote your attention.
And one last tip: do not follow more people than follow you. It's considered a negative to follow a thousand people with only 100 followers of your own. For example, as you get up into the hundreds of followers, let's say 500, do not follow more than 450.
So hopefully that answered the question, or at least cave you some food for thought: you should use Twitter for your business.
Thanks for reading.