Twitter Automation For Small Business by inbound6

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The ideal guide for small business owners who want to take advantage of the power of Twitter to grow business. Learn about everything from creating a new Twitter profile, to how to engage and build a list of followers. Download for free.

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									Twitter
Automation
for Small
Business


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  This guide is for small business owners or individuals starting out with Twitter automation or want to get a refresher on the basics of
  Twitter marketing. After reading this, you will be able to execute successful tactics related to the topic.




                                                           Twitter Automation for
                                                           Small Business
                                                           By Michael Cusden

                                                           Michael Cusden, Inbound Marketing Manager at
                                                           SimplyCast, is responsible for creating ebooks,
                                                           whitepapers and online marketing guides. Michael is a
                                                           prolific blogger who also manages content for SimplyCast’s
                                                           website and user application. He is an expert in content
                                                           marketing, social media marketing and occasionally has
                                                           time to Tweet about it.

                                                           Follow @michaelcusden




  Grow Business Automatically in 140
  Characters Or Less
  Twitter is one of the top marketing tools at our disposal
  today. But many small businesses fail to see the value and
  still view it as waste of time. This is far from the truth. By
  adding Twitter marketing automation to the mix as well as a
  few minutes of organic tweeting, any small business can:
                                                                                                 Research showed that in 2012:
                                                                                                 •	34%	of	marketers	generated	leads	using	
  •	   Build Brand                                                                               Twitter	and	20%	closed	deals.
                                                                                                 •	30%	of	Twitter	users	have	an	income	over	
  •	   Drive Sales                                                                               $100,000.
  •	   Solve Problems                                                                            •	100	million	active	Twitter	users	log	in	at	
                                                                                                 least once per day.
  •	   Win New Customers
  •	   Become An Authority




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            Table of Contents
            04 Getting Started with Twitter
            •	   What is a Tweet 4
            •	   Setting Up a Profile 6
            •	   Making a Beautiful Account 6
            •	   Defining Your Goals 6
            •	   Start Following 8


            09 How to Engage
            •	   Listen 9
            •	   Choose Your Voice 10
            •	   Set a Habit & Automate Process 10
            •	   Create Sharable Content 13


            14 Twitter Automation for Business
            •	   Overall Goals 14
            •	   Marketing 15
            •	   Lead Generation 15
            •	   Customer Service 17


            18 Amplify and Grow Reach
            •	 Promote Twitter Account 18
            •	 “Get What You Give” Mentality 22.
            •	 Measuring Impact & Performance 23



            25 Conclusion


  Before setting you on your way, we will review everything that you will have learned by reading this
  guide. A printable quick tip sheet will also be included at the end to help you out.




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  Getting Started With Twitter
  Twitter is a critical business communication tool as it allows businesses of any size to engage with
  customers in real-time which makes it a highly effective medium. More and more, tech-savvy users
  are turning to Twitter before using more traditional methods of researching and reaching out.


  The Advantages of Twitter
  •	   Immediate
  •	   Observed
  •	   Measured
  •	   Open Dialogue
  •	   Public & Organic Conversations
  •	   Accessible & Flexible
  •	   Unlimited Content Via The RT
  •	   Community Building



  Points to Remember
  •	   Public Conversation
  •	   Easy To Start Controversy
  •	   Mistakes Can Snowball
  •	   Careful Of What Is Posted



  What is a Tweet?
  A Tweet is a post or status update on Twitter
  consisting	of	a	maximum	of	140	characters.	
  Tweets have evolved to more than everyday
  experiences, and take the shape of shared links
  to interesting content on the web,
  conversations around hot topics, photos,
  videos, music, and, most importantly, real-time
  accounts from people who are in the midst of a newsworthy event, crisis, or natural disaster.




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  A Retweet (or RT) is a post or status
  update that is shared from another user.
  Retweeting is how Twitter users share
  interesting Tweets from the people they
  are following. They copy and paste the
  original Tweet and send it out. To give
  credit to the original person, users usually
  put “RT” plus the originator’s username at
  the beginning of the Tweet.




  Hashtags are a way for people to
  search for Tweets on a common topic.
  If you want to find out what people are
  saying about the latest Smart Phone,
  you would search for Tweets with the
  hashtag #iPhone, #Android or even
  #BlackBerry. Or better yet, Tweet using
  one of these hashtags so others can
  find what you are saying.




  Direct Messages or DMs are a way to
  interact with another Twitter user
  privately. Twitter allows you to send a
  direct or private message to anyone who
  follows you. Be cautious of automatically
  sending a DM to everyone who follows
  you. If done poorly, it is a big turnoff and
  can make you look unprofessional.




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  Setting Up a Profile
  Setting up a Twitter profile only takes a few minutes and offers quite a lot of customization for your
  business.


  First you need to choose the right handle or public name. This will be your Twitter nickname and will
  be displayed publicly. It is a best practice to use something branded or related to your company. This
  could be your actual company name or a persona that you create to represent your brand (think
  mascot). The name cannot be more than 15 characters so you will have to be a little creative.


  From there, write a short bio about who you are and what you plan to share on Twitter. Think
  business card catchy. Do not just copy the standard boilerplate from your website’s About Us section.
  Make it catchy. Also try to include a few keywords related to your business and of course your
  company website.


  Making a Beautiful Account
  With Twitter’s limit on characters, the overall design of your Twitter profile needs to be eye-grabbing
  and create an association with your product. This does not mean “Las Vegas” style with too much
  flashy design, but instead a simple design that brands your company in the eye of the follower.


  The two main areas to focus on are your profile photo and the background for the entire page.


  Choosing the right profile picture for your business really comes down to the message you want to
  send. Best practice says to use your company logo for your profile picture but it could also be the
  initials of your company or like mentioned before, the persona or mascot that brands your company.
  Try not to choose something obscure or hard to see or it will appear unprofessional.


  For the background, keep in mind what parts of the screen are open for your content and that
  different monitors will influence where things appear. A pretty standard way to go is to add a logo
  and contact information. Once you build up a following you can update your background design.



  Defining Your Goals
  Now that you have your handle picked and design elements added, it is almost time to start using
  Twitter. Before you do though, it is a good idea to define what your goal is for using Twitter for your
  business.




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  What are your communication goals and overall Twitter strategy?
  Some examples of a communication goal would be:
  	    •		To	expand	reach	of	company.
  	    •		Providing	customer	support	for	product.
  	    •		Providing	information	based	content	on	a	topic	in	order	to	be	seen	as	an	authority.	
  	    •		To	simply	entertain	and	put	your	name	out	there.


   All or one of these communication goals can be implemented.


  Ask these questions to help develop your overall Twitter strategy.
  •		What	does	your	business	hope	to	gain	from	Twitter?
  •		How	will	Twitter	work	with	already	established	marketing	strategies?
  •		Who	is	the	target	audience?
  •		Which	industry	leaders,	organizations	and	businesses	should	be	followed?
  •		What	is	our	Tweet	frequency?
  •		How	much	automation	should	be	used?
  •		Who	is	the	point	person	for	our	Twitter	account?
  •		What	kind	of	oversight	will	be	in	place	for	Twitter?
  •		What	will	the	Tweet	tone	be?
  •		What	are	our	Twitter	metrics?
  •		How	are	our	competitors	using	Twitter?
  •		What	keywords	are	important	to	our	company?
  •		What	trends	are	we	going	to	monitor?


  After answering these questions, you are ready to start tweeting and following.




                                                                      The name of the social network was
                                                                      originally “Twttr,” later changed to
                                                                      Twitter.




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  Start Following
  It is important that you don’t follow too many new people at one time. Twitter spammers
  aggressively follow a large number of people in short bursts. If you act like a spammer, someone
  might report you as such and Twitter might suspend your account. You will also be limited by
  Twitter on how many people you can follow in one day. Use the search feature on Twitter or hashtags
  to quickly find potential users to follow.


  It is a good idea to monitor new followers and engage in conversation either with a simple public
  thank you or a DM. It is very popular to automate the DM sent when someone follows you but in the
  beginning, it is good to establish connections, so take that extra time. Automation will come later.



  Getting Started With Twitter Takeaways
  •	 Select a username that fits your company image and will help grow the brand. If your desired
     name is taken, get creative and have fun with it.
  •	 Make your profile page appealing to the eye, which includes a profile logo and a full background. I
     recommend keeping it simple.
  •	 Define the goals for your Twitter account. You can have more than one, but you need to decide
     before you get started.
  •	 Start following in small doses and targeting who you follow. Monitor daily and establish
     connections.




                                                                       50% of Twitter users are using the
                                                                       social network via mobile.




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  How To Engage
  Twitter is a two-way conversation. This is the only way you will be able to build a loyal and engaged
  following. Simply setting up automated Tweets won’t do it. We will cover the correct way to
  implement Twitter automation later in this guide.


  Many brands, businesses and marketers already know how powerful Twitter is for finding and
  engaging with their audience.


  The low cost, immediacy and viral nature makes it a favorite tool for everyone from news
  organizations to small businesses.


  But for those using Twitter for the first time for their business, they often wonder why they don’t get
  an overwhelming response to their first few Tweets. Well the simple answer is you need to develop
  and engage a following.


  Here is how you do that:



  Listen
  When you first start out with a new Twitter account, the first thought is to go and follow hundreds of
  people to get the ball rolling. While this is not totally wrong, it is a good idea to have a plan on who
  you will follow. Like I mentioned already, target groups of people and add them in small doses. As
  each branch of followers opens up, you will find new lists of users who match up well with your
  company.


  By taking it slow, it will allow you to listen or read what is being said by each of the newly followed
  tweeters. By listening, you will find new directions to take, what the hot topics are and what is
  trending. Don’t just start sending out Tweets without taking the time to read what others are saying.
  Twitter is full of interesting people, who want to answer questions and engage with you. The key is to
  start a conversation.


  It is also a good idea to infuse a little personality into your profile. I feel this is a must, otherwise your
  feed will have the appearance that you are just posting messages like a robot. Few will want to
  engage or follow you if this is the case.




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  Choose Your Voice
  Every company needs a voice on social media. Some stick to their corporate vision, some try to add a
  little humor. Whichever is your style, you should implement and stay true to it. This is especially
  important if you have multiple people managing your Twitter account.


  Here are a few best practices that I always tell those new to Twitter to use to help decide on what the
  voice of your company should be.


  •	 If you can’t say it to your mother, grandmother or spiritual adviser with a straight face, then never,
     ever Tweet it.
  •	 Don’t Tweet under stress. You are prone to lashing out and posting something that you’re going
     to regret, regardless whether it is complaining about a project or supervisor. Don’t. Just don’t.
  •	 Never Tweet if a phone call or a face-to-face meeting is better or more productive. It’s
     unprofessional and, quite frankly, lazy.
  •	 Don’t Tweet about private company information. This should be obvious.
  •	 Don’t gossip about internal politics. No one cares whether your cube-mate steals from the
     communal fridge.
  •	 Never, ever blow off steam with your personal thoughts on your customers. If your customers are
     frustrating you, or not spending as they should, keep it to yourself.
  •	 Even if it is a company sanctioned happy hour or holiday party, don’t Tweet or post pictures of
     your CEO doing Jell-O shots in a dive bar.


  Pretty common sense stuff but you would be surprised what some people will put out into the
  Twitterverse. Remember, your business account is all about your company whether it be projects,
  promotions, employees or views. It should never be a personal soap box.



  Form A Habit & Automate Process
  Just like any type of Internet user, Twitter readers are creatures of habit. By creating your own habit
  of when you post Tweets, you will make it easier for followers to see your content. This is also where
  Twitter marketing automation can save you a great deal of time.


  As long as you remember that full automation is not welcomed by everyone and that you should
  sprinkle in a few daily Tweets that your write yourself to avoid coming off as robotic.




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  As a small business, one cannot actively manage multiple social media accounts, as well as other
  aspects of business without some level of automation.


  Twitter has set guidelines and best practices for automation: https://support.twitter.com/arti-
  cles/76915-automation-rules-and-best-practices. Adhering to these guidelines ensures you are
  playing safe without any worry of account suspension. Sometimes, Twitter filters out
  robot-like accounts from search results before the suspension process is initiated. If the bulk of your
  Tweets are automated, it is advisable to check Twitter search results everyday. An absence from T
  witter search is a clear indication your account has been pinned down by Twitter and it is time to re-
  think your strategy.


  Now that is the dark side or quick fix of Twitter automation. Yes, it will get you some notice and link
  backs, but it won’t do anything for your engagement or growth.


  So	what	should	you	use	Twitter	automation	for?	In	short,	anything	you	can	schedule	ahead	of	time	
  that will add value when it is posted.


  •	   Time Sensitive Information ie. Reminders Or Special Promotions.
  •	   Company News Or Product Launches.
  •	   Holiday Greetings Or Birthday Wishes.
  •	   Blog Posts And Industry Articles.
  •	   Links To Other Social Media Profiles.


  You can also schedule automated Tweets about:

  Short profiles about company staff
  Customers love to learn about the people behind their favorite products. They want to learn about the
  people in your company. Too often, companies on Twitter are more focused on selling that they miss
  how much of a sales impact a little humanizing does. If you have a customer support team, put a face
  to their helpful advice. Your customers will appreciate having a better idea of who they are talking to.

  Company press releases
  Whatever is going on inside the walls of your business – unless, of course, it’s top-secret – is great
  fodder for Twitter. Try to Tweet fuzzier, heart-warming press releases than those that may be more
  technical. Happy news – such as how your product changed a family’s life – is read, commented on
  and Retweeted more often than non-fuzzy news.




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  Teasers about almost-released new products
  This tactic works especially well with an upcoming holiday or a highly anticipated product. Perhaps
  you release a new product feature every week or what the initial price will be. Twitter is a fantastic tool
  at creating buzz, and buzz is what every marketer wants. Don’t go overboard or it will be a buzz kill.


  Reviews and articles about your company products
  Link to articles and product reviews. Even better, try to link to reviews by trusted consumer agencies
  and websites. Essentially, you’re not saying how fantastic your products are, someone else is.


  Customer testimonials on your website
  People trust other people. People trust people they’ve never met more than they trust the company
  that’s pushing them to buy their latest product. Let your customers do the selling for you.


  By creating and automating Tweets ahead of time, you are not only spending less time on Twitter,
  you are creating a more structured Twitter attack that allows you to stick to your vision and voice. Not
  to mention allowing more focus on other areas of the business. Once automated Twitter marketing
  campaigns are in place, it makes it easy to take a few minutes a day to add more personal Tweets and
  engage with anyone trying to reach you.




                                                                          Over the span of 16 days, the London
                                                                          Olympics generated 150 million tweets.




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  Create Sharable Content
  To fully engage readers and build a greater following, you need to create highly sharable content. This
  is content that people want to share over and over again because it is trending, innovative,
  beautiful or just down right awesome. If you have looked at your Twitter feed lately, you know what I
  am talking about. Don’t just write what everyone else is doing. Come up with a new vantage point.


  This could be written content, infographics, videos or photos. Just take a look on Twitter and see what
  other brands are Retweeting and posting. Top 10 lists and How-to guides are gold when creating
  sharable content.



  Twitter Engagement Takeaways
  •	 Don’t just post constant Tweets without reading what others are saying. Twitter is meant to be a
     two-way conversation.
  •	 Before	Tweeting,	choose	your	voice.	What	kind	of	personality	do	you	want	to	portray?	
  •	 Create a habit of Tweeting with automation. Preset a few Tweets daily to engage and inform
     audience and add in your own live Tweets when you can.
  •	 The best way to engage readers is to create highly sharable content. If it provides value and is
     presented in a new and exciting way, people will share it.




                                                                      The average business has over 14,000 Twitter
                                                                      followers.




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  Twitter Automation For Business
  With everything set up, a better understanding of Twitter automation and a small following
  established,	what	do	you	do	next	to	explode	your	Twitter	profile	and	grow	business?	

  Overall Goals
  Step one, plan out what you intend on Tweeting about and what the goals are for doing so.


  Are	you	strictly	sending	out	marketing	materials	about	your	product?	Maybe	lead	generation	
  initiatives?	Or	are	you	planning	to	do	mostly	customer	service?	Regardless	of	which	you	plan	to	use	
  (maybe all), here are five areas to focus on after you set your goals for Twitter.

  Link
  Tweet links to your articles, blog or news archives on your website. This is especially effective for those
  new or potential customers to learn a bit more about you and what you do. Further, if you’re ever
  stuck or lacking Tweet-inspiration, post a link to your most commented on or most controversial
  article.

  Tease
  Post teasers about what is coming up in your other marketing campaigns, including exclusive offers
  in your email newsletter, member-only tips in your fax blasts or contests on your other social media
  sites. Think of your entire marketing strategy as a giant machine: each part needs to support the rest
  in order for the entire operation to be successful.

  Review
  Link to recent consumer product reviews from trusted sources and newly added customer
  testimonials from your website. Customers who are on the fence about you will learn much more from
  other customers than anything you’ll ever Tweet will.

  Offer
  Tweet exclusive promotional codes. You’ll be able to then track how much business your Twitter page
  is generating and how many people “cash-in” on your deals. To make it easier, write your codes so
  that they have some reference to Twitter, like TWEET25.

  Retweet
  Always, always, Retweet fascinating or interesting links or Tweets, especially those that are related to
  your industry. By taking a break from shameless self-promotion, you’ll show that you are tuned in to
  what others are talking about. And, as an added bonus, the more you Retweet, the higher the
  possibility that you’ll gain new followers and be Retweeted by others.


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  Marketing
  Two of the main reasons why Twitter is a powerful marketing tool is that, one, it is instant, and two, it
  is inexpensive for the most part. Anyone can follow the steps to setting up and building a strong
  Twitter account. The biggest hurdle for many is the time or resources to remain active.


  Again, this is why Twitter marketing automation is a very helpful tool for small businesses. You will
  reduce the time you spend Tweeting and still maintain an active profile. It is still vital to take at least
  10 minutes every day and read your feed, engage with followers and show that there is in fact a
  person behind it.

  Lead Generation
  Since you have started using Twitter for your business, it is only natural that you will want to leverage
  Twitter as a lead generation tool. The beauty of Twitter is that it allows instant conversation for
  someone looking for the product or service that you are offering. By keeping your eyes open and
  being ready to act helps. By just using some simple search tips, you can mine Twitter for all kinds of
  potential leads.


  Then when someone is looking for a specific service that you have the solution for, you could suggest
  it and bring in a new lead.


  The problem with this is, you can’t browse Twitter all day looking for these people. The whole idea is
  to reduce your time on Twitter, not add several hours to it.


  Here are some quick and easy ways to find potential leads in only a few minutes.

  Twitter advanced search
  If you use Twitter, you are probably aware of the basic search function. This lets you save a tremen-
  dous amount of time while you run searches using your name, or your business’s name, your brands,
  your competition and other tags. This will help keep track of your online business reputation as you
  look at the response to your Tweets.


  However, the advanced search function is what you should really take advantage of because it lets
  you run a search for your keywords by geographical location. So, if you live in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
  and run an advanced search for who is in Dartmouth, you can see who is saying what in that area. This
  is real-time data you can filter and develop into business opportunities.




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  Being responsive is the key
  Twitter is full of people who post questions, opinions, requirements and just about anything and it
  is up to the marketer to utilize these Tweets. If someone is looking for something, they would be
  pleased to have someone respond to their need. Whether it is to identify, filter or respond to people
  asking questions or complaining. This becomes even more valuable if it is someone from their local
  area. As a marketer, you can plan and set up a series of Tweets that could very well convert into hot
  leads on a daily basis.


  Remember, you must take care to insure readers don’t consider you a spammer. Instead, identify your
  niche and target people in that segment by triggering an interesting conversation and being helpful,
  eventually generating leads.



  Distribute content
  Using Twitter as a way to distribute content and information can help drive leads for other content
  properties such as blog posts, contests, webinars, eBooks, etc. When distributing content via Twitter,
  either use Twitter’s reporting metrics or another URL shortening service to track statistics for the clicks
  and shares of your content on Twitter. This will be an important set of data to better understand what
  subjects and types of content drive the best traffic and leads from Twitter.




                                                                        McDonalds employs 10+ people to run their
                                                                        Twitter account.




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  Customer Service
  Using Twitter for customer service is something that should only be considered if you have the
  resources. Due to Twitter’s instant nature, when a person asks for help on Twitter, they are really
  expecting an answer in under 10 minutes. Even if it is to say their request was read and the necessary
  people are looking into it.


  Engaging with followers is important but when someone is seeking your help and you leave it for a
  day, they will be irritated and less likely to engage with you again.


  It can’t be stressed enough how important it is to monitor your feed for questions and to respond in a
  timely fashion.


  Use DMs
  For more detailed problems, keep information private using direct messages. If it is a wide spread
  issue, send out one Tweet to explain, but don’t try and answer everyone publicly.


  This will keep your feed clear and make it easy for people looking for the problem instead of having
  to scroll through endless Tweets.



  Twitter For Business Takeaways
  •	   Determine your goal for using Twitter and match your content accordingly.
  •	   Use tools like Twitter’s advanced search for lead generation purposes.
  •	   Being responsive is key for marketing, lead generation and customer support goals.
  •	   Use DMs or direct messages when working with customers on unique questions.




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  Grow Twitter Reach
  The final stage of using Twitter marketing for your small business, is amplifying your profile to reach a
  much	wider	audience.	The	more	engaged	users	you	have,	the	better	right?


  Remember, you want to have followers who read your content, do something with it and help spread
  your posts to new users.


  Having an account of 50,000 followers who don’t even know who you are is not the optimal situation.


  Here are some simple ways to grow your Twitter reach.

  Promote Twitter account
  It is easy to create a Twitter account and start posting messages. That only takes a minute or two to
  get started. If you are entering the world of Twitter marketing however, it will take more time to see
  results.


  The tricky part is building an engaged following that not only helps brand your organization, but also
  becomes a source for new leads and new sales.


  Here are 8 simple ways to improve your Twitter presence and expand overall reach:

  “Answer Monday’s”
  Regardless of what you call it, setting aside one day per week to answer your customers’ top
  questions is an invaluable strategy to immediately improve your Twitter presence. It not only shows
  that you care about what your customers are struggling with but also that your company is proactive
  when it comes to customer service. If a handful of customers have the same issue, then, chances are,
  there are others.


  Compile a list of the top questions from the previous week, collecting them from all of your customer
  service channels – instant messaging, forum postings, Facebook, Twitter, emails and over the phone.
  Cover all possible areas in which a customer may have an issue including customer service, technical
  assistance, sales and promotions, and products.


  Then, Tweet the answers. In order to see a significant change in your Twitter presence, this act can’t
  be fly-by-the-night, Tweeting irregularly. Instead, pick a day of the week, and publicize that your
  company is going to answer these questions.



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  Internal Shout-Outs
  People who follow businesses on Twitter want the occasional reminder that, in fact, there are actual,
  real, live people running the show. The common perception of companies – regardless of size or type
  – is that they’re nameless, faceless automated machines that spit out products for a profit.


  One of the best ways to break the mold and increase your Twitter marketing stature is to remind the
  public that your company is comprised of real people.


  Tweet high-fives, kudos and shout-outs to your fellow cube-mates. Tweet excellent work. Tweet
  completed projects. Tweet an amazing brainstorming session. Tweet whatever that makes your
  company proud.

  Welcome New Clients
  Similarly to Tweeting internal kudos, sharing with the Twittersphere how happy you are for gaining a
  new client or customer makes everyone’s day.


  This practice not only reaffirms your new found connection to your new client but also shows that
  your company takes relationships very seriously.


  On another level, by publicly welcoming new clients, it shouts that you’re not all about the cheddar,
  pushing deals or self-promotion.

  Deals
  Some of the most successful businesses Tweet a daily or weekly deal, something that’s entirely
  exclusive to Twitter. Posting regularly increases followers’ anticipation, conversion rates and even
  attracting new followers.


  Another useful and proven tip to increase Twitter presence is to link to your on-going deals through
  coupon sites like Groupon or Livingsocial.


  Tweeters (and the general public) love to get deals, and one of the fastest growing searches on Twit-
  ter is for any sort of discount or promotions.




                                      Copyright SimplyCast 2013                   #learntwitter           19
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  Use Hashtags (#)
  Hashtags are an incredibly powerful and wonderful Twitter tool. As mentioned earlier, hashtags (or #)
  are words that point to a specific subject or trending topic. The # separates the word from the rest of
  the Tweet to underscore the importance. Hashtags are searchable, ranked and organic, meaning that
  anyone can add a hashtag to a word to start a trending topic.


  One of the biggest mistakes that Twitter marketers do is to overuse hashtags in their Tweets. By
  littering their posts with every other word hashtagged out, they assume that it increases the
  searchability and relevance.


  Sadly, the opposite is true. By using hashtags sparingly and correctly, you’ll tap into the current topics
  within your industry, highlight critical information in your Tweets and possibly start a trend.


  Also, do some research for the week’s (or month’s) top hashtags within your industry. If there’s
  already a conversation going on about a certain topic, tap into that collective power.


  Follow Twitter Trending
  Before falling headfirst into the powerful world of Twitter hashtags, do some research into what are
  the trends for your industry.


  Besides Twitter’s own trending system, several other online directories update the top hashtags and
  topics.


  •	What	are	the	most	popular	subjects?
  •	What	are	the	least	popular?
  •	Is	there	something	that	your	industry	is	not	Tweeting?


  Watch for any seismic shifts in industry hashtags or if new topics pop up. Look for any patterns. Also,
  monitor which hashtags your competitors, clients and potential markets use.


  Create Your Own Hashtags
  After doing some research and monitoring, you’ll probably come across a void in your industry. Why
  not	fill	it	with	your	own	hashtag?


  Or,	even	further,	your	business	is	unique,	so	why	not	write	a	specialized	hashtag	just	for	your	brand?




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  When writing hashtags, keep them short, relevant and memorable. Try to avoid using all lower case
  lettering, but opt for Title Case, which makes the hashtags easier to read and identify.


  After which, promote your new subject not only through Twitter but all of your other online marketing
  channels.

  Tweet Photos
  Sometimes a picture is worth a 1,000 words (or Tweets!). There’s so much more power in showing
  rather than telling. And, sometimes there aren’t any words.


  By using a website like TwitPic, you’ll be able to Tweet whatever image you’d like to promote.

  Post Product Tips
  What Twitter provides is an informal platform from which your customers can chat about the weird,
  amazing, interesting and fascinating ways they use your products.


  YouTube was one of the first champions of the odd product uses (remember that blender guy that
  took the “blends anything” promise to the extreme by shoving every object in his house into his new
  appliance).


  Or, look back in the day, when Arm & Hammer baking soda started launching individual campaign
  ads based on their customer’s feedback. Who knew you could brush your teeth, sanitize a litter box
  and	whiten	whites	all	with	one	cooking	product?


  For every 10 customers that suggest amazing ways to use your product, one is always entirely hare-
  brained. So, sort through your posts, emails and messages and see what the chatter is on different
  uses for your product.


  Tweet the best.


                                                                       Infographics shared on Twitter get 832% more
                                                                       Retweets than images and articles.




                                     Copyright SimplyCast 2013                   #learntwitter              21
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  Tweet With Some Pizzazz
  Yes, yes, you know already! Experts alway say it helps to improve the overall quality of your content.
  Yes, it is one of the most universal tips I blog about regardless of marketing tactic. Yes, improving
  writing quality is entirely dependent on the person doing the writing.


  But, out of all the tips I have ever given, it is, hands down, the most critical piece of advice I can pass
  along.


  Writing is everything. Content is everything.


  As for Twitter, the only thing that will help you rise above the masses and be noticed is the overall
  quality of Tweets. Since you have such limited space to get your message across, not only do you
  need to write with some skill but with some flare.


  Flare is what gets you noticed, Retweeted, forwarded, search and followed.


  “Get What You Give” Mentality
  When it comes to building a strong following, if you stick to the “you get what you give” mentality,
  you will see success.


  Simply setting up a long list of automated tweets to promote and sell yourself, your business or your
  product, won’t engage anyone. You can still use these Tweets of course, they just need to be mixed in
  with other types of messages.


  The Retweet is the greatest way to improve reach without doing much other than reading and ac-
  knowledging that something is interesting.


  Retweeting others in your industry, customers, and large brands is a great way to get noticed. If you
  help promote someone else, there is a good chance they will do their best to return the favor.


  Scroll through your feed at least once a day and Retweet a few posts that you find interesting. Again,
  this will show that you are using more than automation and that you are putting effort in to engage
  and add to the conversation.




                                       Copyright SimplyCast 2013                     #learntwitter              22
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  Measuring Performance
  Your follower number isn’t the only metric you should be looking at to determine how successful you
  are on the popular social networking site. With Twitter, bigger is not always better. Measurement is
  the key to ensuring your efforts are taking you in the right direction. They reveal which campaigns
  were successful and which fell short.


  Here are the main areas to focus on when it comes to metrics.

  Follower Count
  It’s right there on your Twitter profile and it’s the most common way the media (or anyone else)
  reference success on Twitter. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the most flawed metrics available to you
  and easily gamed. Anyone can take the time to manually add followers and keep the ratio of followers
  to following pretty even. But all that shows is someone had a lot of time to click the follow button.


  A good sign of a strong and engaged Twitter account is a very low following number versus a very
  high follower number.

  Mentions
  You hear about the importance of conversation on Twitter all the time, and mentions are one of the
  primary ways to measure how engaged your Twitter community is.


  This shows how engaged your account is but it is does not give any context to who is engaging. If it is
  just your friends for example, it is not really growing your account.

  Retweets
  A Retweet is a very strong endorsement that can lead to more followers, clicks and conversions.
  Again, while it is good to get a lot of RTs, it is better to get a lot of RTs from those who are influential.
  The RT is what can make something go viral or “trend” on Twitter in a matter of minutes. Now do you
  see why shareable content will be handy.


  Impressions
  In an effort to make social media metrics comparable to advertising buys, the impressions number has
  become popular. Impressions measures your potential reach and is the number of times your mes-
  sage (or mention of you) could have been seen, based on the follower count of those talking about
  you. You can think of it as similar to impressions for a billboard, where you have an idea of how many
  people drive by it every day, but it may not truly represent how many people saw it.



                                        Copyright SimplyCast 2013                    #learntwitter           23
Twitter Automation For Small Business                                            Share!

  Measuring impressions generally requires a third party service but there are certainly plenty to choose
  from.

  Clicks /Traffic back to your site
  If someone clicks on a link you send out, you know they have not only seen your message, but they’d
  also like to hear more. Link shortening services allow you to track how many clicks each link you send
  out gets. You can also see how much traffic Twitter drives back to your site from Google Analytics or
  other web analytics services.


  Whether or not this is a helpful metric for you depends on your goals on social networks. If you are
  focused on brand awareness and recall, visits and clicks may not be as important. If instead, your goal
  is visits and sign ups, this would be a vital measurement for you.

  Clicks /Traffic back to your site
  Yes, just like all other areas of marketing, it comes down to measuring ROI or return on investment.
  This requires some fancy math or the services of a third party to find out how many new users or
  purchases you gain from Twitter and comparing that to the effort you put in.


  As a small business, this may not be important in the beginning unless you are spending a lot of
  money on your Twitter presence, then you of course, want to see a return.


  Grow Twitter Reach Takeaways
  •	 Promote your Twitter profile wherever you can. Engage your audience by letting them get to know
     you and your company.
  •	 The best rule of thumb when it comes to Twitter and other social sites for that matter, is, you get
     what you give. Share what others are posting and they will do the same.
  •	 Measuring the performance of your Tweets is the only way you can learn about what your readers
     like and don’t like about your posts.




                                                                      11 Twitter accounts are created every second.




                                      Copyright SimplyCast 2013                    #learntwitter               24
Twitter Automation For Small Business                                           Share!



  Conclusion
  If you want Twitter marketing to work for you over the long term, then you have to focus on building
  a loyal base of followers. These followers need to be targeted and not random, which sets you apart
  from your competition. Then and only then will you see the benefits of promoting products and ser-
  vices and having your followers share with their followers.


  It takes a lot of quality time to build an engaged list of followers who want to read your daily Tweets.
  Thanks to Twitter automation, you can reduce the time you spend posting messages and spend that
  time focusing on business.


  Go ahead, establish a voice, set your goals and form a routine posting highly sharable content. Twitter
  is just waiting for you and your business to jump on board.


  Happy Tweeting.


  About SimplyCast
  SimplyCast.com is a leading provider of interactive marketing software and services for
  organizations worldwide. The company’s multi-channel marketing platform is a feature-rich solution
  used by thousands of customers in over 175 countries, including many of the most recognized brand
  names around the globe in retail, non-profit and hospitality industries. With thousands of
  organizations using SimplyCast solutions to automate email, survey, event, voice, SMS, Twitter, fax,
  Facebook, press release, landing pages and autoresponder marketing needs, they now have the
  power to effectively reach customers on their preferred mode of communication.


  Get In Touch
  www.simplycast.com
  twitter.com/simplycast
  facebook.com/simplycast
  pinterest.com/simplycast
  1.877.312.4979




                                      Copyright SimplyCast 2013                   #learntwitter          25
Twitter Automation For Small Business                                               Share!




  Quick List of What to Tweet About
  1. Tweet or post company press releases or news updates.

  2. Comment on what you’re competitors are doing.

  3.	If	you’ve	had	a	recent	failure	or	public	relations	disaster,	share	with	your	followers	what	happened	

  and what you’re doing to fix it.

  4.	Launch	support	for	a	charity	or	non-profit	that	your	company	supports.

  5. Write responses to what your followers say about your posts or Tweets.

  6. Ask a question to your followers about your products, their experience or what they’d like to see

  you do or try next.

  7. Answer general customer questions about your company, products or services.

  8. Interview your CEO or president.

  9. Post a touching story about how your products or company, itself, made a difference in a

  community.

  10. Recommend articles written by industry leaders.

  11. Talk about the history of your company and how it grew to be what it is now.

  12. Comment on legislation or governmental regulation that could positively (or negatively!) impact

  your business.

  13.	Write	about	what	the	mission	of	your	company	is.

  14.	Congratulate	staff	for	their	hard	work.

  15. Search for the top keywords in your industry.

  16. Tweet or post best practices within your industry.

  17. Google Alerts, RSS Feeds, Flickr (sometimes a picture is all the inspiration that you need!).

  18. Retweet or link to a timely news article that will interest your followers.

  19. Link to product reviews.

  20. Tweet or post a well-received archived article or blog.




                                        Copyright SimplyCast 2013                    #learntwitter       26

								
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