Setting up Twitter for your business
Twitter can be a fun service to use for consumers, it can also be a very powerful tool for business owners wishing to get their message across. A users Twitter feed is a flow of messages posted by people they follow. If you can get people to follow you, they will see your tweets.
Account set up
When setting up a Twitter account you should choose a user name that directly reflects your brand. If your Twitter name is nothing like your business name or identity, a user will not realise the Twitter account is related to your company. If possible use a Twitter name that exactly matches your company name. If your company has variations of a name for example... 'company LTD' you should register these as well, simply to prevent someone else being able to register them.
To set up a Twitter account, simply follow the registration process and provide a valid email address. The email address you provide has to be real, because Twitter will send you an email with a link that needs to be used to fully activate your account. Once your account is activated you are ready to go. You can now post your first Tweet.
Tweeting is a form of blogging often referred to as Micro blogging. Micro blogging means you can only use a set number of characters to make a post. Other social media sites such as Facebook do not impose this limit. On Twitter you need to work out exactly how to get your message across within the allocated number of characters.
On twitter the number of characters allowed matches the maximum number of characters within one SMS message (140) it can sometimes become difficult to post a tweet within these constraints. It is important to remove any fluff and get straight to the point. In many ways this was the thinking behind twitter. By reducing the number of allowable characters the content is immediate and does not contain useless detail.
If you wish to post a URL on Twitter it is important to remember that the number of characters used in the URL will go towards your total number of allowed characters in the post. For this reason we recommend you use a URL shortening service such as http://slink.co or Bitly
The content within your first tweet can be pretty important with regards to getting people to follow you. Be basic, but direct. Let people know who you are and what you do. If you are new to Twitter, the site will very often prompt you with follow suggestions and other general details that help you make the most of the service. Only follow people you are interested in hearing from.
If you just blindly follow people without taking the time to find out a little bit more about them you may well find your Twitter feed is filled with nonsense that you can't be bothered reading through. Twitter works both ways. You see posts from people you follow and people who follow you see your posts.
If you stick to following people that are of interest to your company, you will find, through time that some of these users will follow you back. By doing this you are receiving tweets from users who are of interest to you, and only users with an interest in your topic are receiving your tweets.
Users can also search for tweets using Twitter's search feature. This is where you can add Twitter specific items to your tweet to increase the likelihood of users seeing your tweets.
Hash tags #
Hash tags are widely used on Twitter to enable users to locate tweets that are related to a
specific topic For example...
'On my way to Silverstone to see the British Grand Prix #F1 #Silverstone'
The use of hash tags in this tweet means this tweet is more likely to be displayed when a user searches for F1 or Silverstone. You can use hash tags to increase the relevance of any tweet you make, but it is important to only use hash tags that are directly related to the content and topic of the tweet you are posting.
It is important to keep your twitter followers up to date with information from your company or organisation without overloading them with tweets. If you are tweeting too much you will very quickly annoy your followers because you are in effect flooding their feed. Stick to regular updates that are going to be of value to your followers.
Twitter allows you to interact with other users. There are two main methods of doing this. Private messages are sent to your in-box. This method of communication is private and can only be seen by the recipient and the sender. It is very much like email. It is important to check your in box frequently and reply when required.
Mentions are a public method of communicating with another user. Lets say you want to send a
message to UK Locate on twitter you would post the following...
@UKLocate Hi there, how are you?
This mention would be visible to us as a notification within our account. It would also be visible to any other user that viewed the tweet.
On Twitter a lot of interaction is public and it involves mentioning other users within your posts.
Re Tweeting is a lot like a Facebook share. It means you can repost a tweet that has already been tweeted by another user.
By posting useful and meaningful tweets on twitter you can increase the exposure your tweet receives by having other users re-tweet it.
Facebook for business
Back to self help guides