Social media is emerging (or rather, has emerged) as one of the major players in the SEO and rankings field in online marketing. The majority of companies are utilizing social media to promote their company, communicate with clients, and show off their skills. Social media can take on the form of Facebook (currently the most popular), Twitter, Linked In, Myspace (this is usually only used for promoting bands and artists), and forums and blogs. Building up a positive online presence is vital in a world that is becoming increasingly internet based.Twitter is rapidly catching up to Facebook as an important platform to promote your business, and in some ways is more effective – depending on your business. Twitter is interactive, community-based, and generally less ‘salesy,’ if you are using it effectively. It allows you to communicate with potential clients, others in your industry, and basically anybody you like. It also has significant SEO value, and can improve rankings and bring ‘followers’ to your website in a more organic and natural way.So, we’ve come up with a list for those that are just starting out on Twitter, want to build up their profile, or want to check that that it is being done effectively:
- Have an effective profile. Use a simple handle: if possible just your business name or a shortened version of it, and make sure it is something Tweeters will remember. Be very careful with your bio – make sure to put a few keywords in, but don’t make it obvious. Twitter is all about subtlety!
- Make sure to promote your Twitter page from the start. Do this by posting it on Facebook, Linked In, get staff to link to it via their personal accounts (if viable), and post it on your blog. Most importantly, have a link from the homepage of your website. Check out our homepage for an example!
- Be sure of your strategy and Tweet-style from the get-go. Twitter is a much more conversational medium than Facebook, and you will need to take this into account. Constantly posting your own blog and homepage will get you nowhere. Ask questions, get people involved, and generally be friendly. No need to stick strictly to the subject matter of your business either – though don’t get too political or opinionated. It is best not to be too professional or formal – we think ideas like Friday Funnies (a link to a funny Youtube video/image) are great. However, don’t get too casual either or potential clients won’t take you seriously.
- Use keywords in your tweets, but don’t overindulge. Again, like your bio, it is great to use keywords related to your business when tweeting, but don’t go overboard. Tweeters are smart and hate constant self-promotion by businesses. Only use keywords if they naturally fit into your tweets.
- Build up a following and followers list. This sounds simple, but that isn’t always the case. First off, follow others in your (or your client’s) industry. Seek out your key competitors and follow whoever follows them, plus whoever they follow that is relevant to your business or strategy. Follow people in your city – there are often accounts set up like @tweetperth that are handy to follow.
- Use online tools to find analytics, statistics and info about both your account and everyone who follows you or you follow. There are hundreds of different tools out there, but we recommend Sprout Social and Follower Wonk for starters.
- Offer advice and get involved. Don’t wait for questions to come to you, seek them out by searching for tags, getting involved in trending topics, or ask a question yourself and wait for discussion.
- Stick with it! Social media strategies, particularly Twitter, can often take a while to build up. It can be difficult to stick with them, but building up a community of followers and likers is essential – and it will happen if you employ the right strategy!
So there you have it! Utilising these tips in your plan, or ensuring that the company handling your social media is doing so, will assist in getting your Twitter page up in the rankings and up in popularity – and thus promoting your website and brand name.To get you started, take a look at a few Twitter pages we love: @mashable, @2011census, @KRuddMP – and of course, the @bangonline page.If you are interested in getting some help with your Twitter or social media strategy, or want someone to look after it for you – check out our social media page.