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By Ryan Letterman
Like many business owners, you probably want to make sure you are up-to-date with the latest trends and technology. You don’t want to be left behind your competitors. So, when they set up a Twitter account, you naturally want to get one up and running as well. But pause for a moment to analyze the reasons for establishing your business on Twitter and to consider what information you want to tweet about.
You need to plan your strategy before launching your brand onto a new social media platform. You need to think about what your message is going to be and who will be listening. These points are fundamental to planning a successful Twitter campaign.
Review other business Twitter accounts and analyze the reasons why their social media strategy seems to be successful. Maybe they keep their campaign fresh with daily tweets. It could be that their messages keep relevant to their brand, and they are adept at maintaining both a professional and accessible image. Or perhaps they know their audience well, and are particularly active in the networks frequented by that audience. These businesses have a plan.
What does your Twitter campaign need to look like? First, you need to know who your audience is. With Twitter, you can assume that the age of your target audience will fall between the teens and early forties. Why would this audience be interested in your company? You need to identify your audience’s interests and hone in on these with a long term strategy to keep them engaged.
It takes a little bit of skill and artistry to convey an effective message in 140 characters or less. Once you’ve determined your topic, put together some pre-written tweets that have been carefully researched, planned, and revised. Don’t sit in front of your computer and tweet the first thought that pops into your head. Posting a quick tweet direct from your smartphone, as many businesses seem to do, is not a good plan. You wouldn’t do this with a formal business email, so don’t do this with your tweets. Businesses that take this approach are likely to not have an effective Twitter presence.
You also need to ensure that the people or businesses you follow on Twitter are appropriate and professional. Anyone can see your account and who you follow, and this will affect how your business is perceived. Don’t use your business Twitter account to follow your personal interests such as your favorite music bands, celebrities or TV shows. Keep the list of people or businesses you follow professional. You should also use your business Twitter to network with other professionals who you want to take an interest in your business. They may quite possibly notice when you start following them and reciprocate. You also have the opportunity to follow the business trends that these other professionals are following and connect with their other Twitter followers.
Be sure to utilize your entire team with your social networking endeavors. Plan ahead with your marketing team, public relations team, project experts, and even your legal team to keep your Twitter posts fresh, professional, and on track with the mission of your business.
Your social media image is important to the integrity of your business. A well-thought out plan will get you ready to launch your brand with a professional style that will bring in the business and name recognition you hope to achieve. So before you activate that Twitter account, take a moment to set yourself up for success. Getting into the race is only half the battle. How you chose to run it will determine your success.
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