Twitter is a microblogging and social networking service on which users post ‘tweets’ and can interact with others. Founded in 2006, the app has since amassed 330 million monthly active users. The site has allowed for fast-paced news, customer service and entertainment from celebrity verified accounts. There are a number of ways to use Twitter to your advantage as a marketer but to do this you must first understand it’s unique qualities and strengths. You cannot use Twitter in the same way as you use Facebook or Instagram. In this blog, we’ll go through these unique qualities of Twitter and two ways you can start using the site to boost your business. So, let’s get into it!
What is Twitter good for?
Twitter is different from Facebook and Instagram in two key ways. The first is that Twitter is fast-paced and feels like it’s working in real time whereas other social media apps feel slower and more relaxed. Instagram for example, offers an algorithm that works partly based on most recent activity but is mostly about who you most interact with. Other social apps are also more image focused whereas Twitter mostly consists of quick thoughts and short conversations. Images are still shared, but usually to illustrate a thought. The second way in which Twitter differs from other social channels is that it it much more focused on news and customer service. With the trending tab, you can see quickly what people in your area and the world are talking about in regards to the news and join in the conversation.
You can also tweet brands directly which means that you can get a direct response to your issues from a consumer point of view. In regards to being on Twitter as a brand, it allows you to join in on relevant conversations that will get you noticed using hashtags. You are given the chance to be retweeted by a celebrity or influencer which offers the possibility of free exposure (retweeting makes your original tweet appear on someone else’s feed, like a share). Finally it means you can see reviews from your customers in real time which offers extremely important insight and offers you the chance to have great public customer service. This can build trust in your brand, highlight your positive customer service and encourage customers to repurchase.
Are there downsides?
Like every site, there are always downsides to using Twitter as a brand. First of all, Twitter is a very depersonalised website. This means that, unlike Facebook, where people have profiles that reflect who they are in real life, Twitter allows people to have anonymous profiles. It is actually normalised to have a profile that doesn’t show who you are at all. This can be good in the way that individuals can be part of communities online anonymously and enjoy their interests publicly without the shame that their real life friends and family see their tweets. However, this anonymity also allows individuals to express anger without consequences. For brands, this can be difficult to navigate as customers may send customer service complaints in a way that seems much more negative than in real life.
Overall then, Twitter is good for real-time news, customer service and pop culture. While it can offer more negative customer interactions. How, then can we use this to our advantage in 2022?
Use hashtags to your advantage
Hashtags are a great way to drive visibility and allow you to join a conversation. They allow you to appear on a search page when others search for that specific hashtag and thus allow your tweets to become visible to those who are seeking out news. By joining discussions, you are also promoting your page for engagement. However, there are some things to consider when using hashtags. Firstly, make sure you are only using a couple of hashtags in one tweet. The whole point of tweeting is to post a short thought. People look at twitter to view short opinions and posts. Therefore you need to make sure to keep your tweets concise and this includes keeping the hashtags to a minimum.
You can also create your own hashtags to get people talking about your brand. This should be in relation to a trend or a competition that you have created on your page. Try to stick to simple hashtags that are easy to spell and easy to remember so they are more likely to all be on the same hashtag search. Tell the customer exactly want you want them to do as well. If you are direct and give instructions such as ‘follow our page’ or ‘like this tweet’ for the competition entry, you are much more likely to get better engagement to build your profile.
In order to build a community on Twitter that will actually benefit your brand, you need to be active. This means actively talking to your community, posting, asking for feedback, listening and building emotional connections on a daily basis. To be active and stay active you can ask questions in order to spark debates within your posts and engage in these discussions yourself. Build an emotional connection with your audience instead of simply posting cold, corporate posts. Building a rapport makes your following feel more like a community. This builds brand trust and allows customers to know that you are customer centric, ready to answer questions and ready to offer great customer service. Finally, going hand in hand with being active is being responsive. Responsiveness is key to owning a Twitter account as a brand. Your followers should trust that you care about their feedback and complaints and want to help, responses on Twitter are expected to be much faster that other platforms so make sure to work on getting responsiveness up.