We have been getting quite a few questions over at Brandswag about Twitter. The questions range from personal use to business use. I thought I would put together a list of 25 Tips for small business owners to use when starting out on Twitter.
Use them. Learn them. Love them.
1. Use your personal picture in your Twitter profile. There is only one situation where you can use your logo… if you have two profiles. Your personal profile and your company profile.
2. Don’t setup an Auto-DM to send when users follow you. Why you ask?
Here are two posts talking about why you should not:
Tweeter Blog: How to STOP These Freakin Auto DMs
Social Media Club: To Auto DM or Not to Auto-Dm
3. Use Twitter Search to find subject matters that interest you. This can cater to your business interests, as well as your personal interests. This will help you find people that share
4. Personal life reigns… but not too much. Add in some of your personal life while you are using Twitter. What is important to remember is that you are using Twitter for your business generation as well. The people following you want to know that you are REAL… but not to the point where they are hearing about what you are eating or where you are driving.
5. Use it. It is important to use Twitter as much as you can but not to the point where you are wasting valuable time when at work. Tweet about what you are reading online.. Maybe a new insight you found while reading the night before. Try to use Twitter a couple of times a day.
6. Reply. Reply. Reply. Whenever you get a response (@yourname) make sure that you respond to the reply. This is extremely important because your most valuable followers are the people that respond and communicate with you.
7. (via John Janstch) Use strawpoll to create a survey to feed into your Twitter stream. This will be an awesome way to get information regarding service offerings and products.
8. Follow some awesome business Twitter people (@problogger, @chrisbrogan, @gacconsultants, @business901, @roundpeg, @Ribeezie)
9. Use a business Twitter account (example: @brandswag) to create a great place for customer relationship management. Teach your clients to use Twitter to keep with the happenings of your company. Also, it can help you share the news and information regarding the success of your clients.
10. Use Twitter as a discussion forum. Ask your clients and prospective clients what they would like to see, hear, taste, and experience.
11. Help. (via Twitip) Always help before asking for money. Twitter is not a place for you to hard sell individuals on services. We are here for discussions and not sales.
12. I started out with a personal profile that allowed me to create relationships before starting my company profile. (also via Twitip) I was able to cleaning transition between two accounts because people trusted me. If you start two accounts at the same time you will be overwhelmed and underwhelm your followers.
13. Use TweetLater for productivity. I don’t recommend using this tool much. You need to be involved in the conversation as you start sending tweets. If you are not there to interact with your followers there really is not a point for using the tool. Though.. it does help for those random tweets to stay connected.
14. Take pictures and share on TWitter. Add pictures on Twitter using Twitpic using your iPhone or mobile phone.
15. Use Google Analytics to measure the traffic directed from Twitter to your blog or website. If you can measure the traffic related to sales or aquisitions it help you understand an ROI from the tool.
16. Encourage your employees to join Twitter and become part of the conversation.
17. Twitter connets thought leaders. Talk about a great brain trust!
18. Fill out your profile. Make sure you put information regarding your personal life as well as your business life. This is important because.. everyone reads it.
19. We add our Twitter URLs to our business cards. I also like to add my LinkedIN account and blog URL. This will encourage more of your networking friends to follow you and communicate more effectively.
20. Follow @Zappos. A perfect example of corporate blogging.
21. Download TweetDeck. Tweetdeck is a powerful tool to help you be productive while using Twitter.
22. Are you using a Blackberry or iPhone? You should definitly be looking at downloading an application to help you manage your twitter account while you are out of the office.
23. Thank you. When someone shares your post or tweet make sure you send a DM or Tweet thanking them for their support. Just as you should be emailing people to thank them for comments… same goes with Twitter.
24. Don’t AUTO-DM. Please… it is completely and utterly worthless. Show some personality and human quality when using Twitter. The worst thing to do is Auto-DM. There is a reason I put this twice in the list.
25. Don’t add hundreds of people when you first join Twitter. Let the entire conversation happen naturally.
If you have anymore tips. Please add them below! Get on it!