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Twitter ideas for Small Business

Why use Twitter?

Seems like a question everyone is asking lately -Isn’t Twitter.com all fluff and a big time waster?

Many small and large business would respond “Not at all! Consider putting these ideas into your marketing strategies:

1. Build a relationship with a growing list of targeted followers -
Establish your twitter account as your business brand name. Then find and follow people in your niche. Some will follow you back – that’s how your list will grow. Depending on your business  you might search for Twitter.com people in your local city or neighborhood, your industry or business category, other small business people (locally or not) doing what you are doing , Twitterers asking questions or writing about your niche  (potential clients), other similar busineses (possible competitors), people curious about what is happening with businesses like yours – Once you are following some – others will follow you back – For a targeted list like this you might aim to seek and follow 10 – 20 people a day -

Historically it seemed in the beginning people just wanted a BIG list – kind of a popularity thing - now they are finding that hugely impossible to manage. Applications have appeared out of nowhere to manage and communicate within that huge list. There are times of day when there is no way possible to read all of the tweets flying by!

As a small business person on Twitter - you might consider the main reason is to build a relationship with like minded twitterers - don’t go just for the numbers – find people who are talking about what you are talking about and start a conversation – interact – be real.

Notice those people asking questions you can answer, notice those with something to say about your niche.

2. Build your brand – establish your expertiseBecome the “Go To” person in your niche
Comment with content meaninful to your niche. Offer to help and answer questions, ask questions, take surveys – start conversations, send people to meaningful articles or resources – Choose a theme for a few days then move into another area.  Twitter comments are searchable and NEVER go away! One is able to find out what you say all the way back to the beginning of your account.

3. Gently promote what you do -
There is an integrity for the Small Business person using on line marketing, an etiquette about promotion.  There is nothing more annoying then to have someone pushing product at you in every Tweet. It is easy to “unfollow” those that are there just for the “spammy” nature of promotion. That doesn’t mean you can’t offer your followers something of value when you have it to provide. It is easier as in traditional marketing to build the trusting relationship, offer meaningful content , genuine specials, helpful solutions, insights into your business philosophy. Tell us why you love what you do and we will recognize you and want to find out more.

4.Use http://Search.Twitter.com as a resource to stay current in your niche
Stay on top of the Hot Trends – what’s happening? What is the solution to the most current problem?
Respond with a DM [Direct message] to those who are asking. Build that relationship. This works as an excellent customer service application for small businesses – What are people saying about your business, your service or your product? Again, using the Direct Message @ you can talk with individuals and if necessary “take it to a phone call”  for a more lengthy conversation.  The BIG companies have hired people full time to keep their ears to the messages about that include mentions of their companies.  Think about it -

5. Budget your time in Twitter – Use it meaningfully – Analyze the time and cost of your marketing “investment” – Seek out Twitter tools that help you monitor its value to you. Track your results.

In another post I will talk about some of the free applications out there that are useful for the Small Business using Twitter as one of their marketing tools.  The numbers of Twitter applications are growing – Do you have one (or more) you use all the time?  Which one and why is it helpful for your business marketing?

Terry

http://lovingmarketing.com

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