twitterYou know that you need to use Twitter to promote your business — that much is clear. How to use it, however, is an entirely different matter. Simply put, you’re not likely to draw many followers with just any string of 140 characters, nor are you likely to convert your current followers to customers without a well thought out approach. If you’re looking to boost your business promotion on Twitter, check out these seven tips.


  1. Have a plan. Social media may seem like a free-form platform, and to some extent it is, but just as your company has (or should have) a marketing plan, you’ll want to have a plan for Twitter usage. When and how often will you tweet? To answer these questions, take some time to see when your followers are engaging with your posts, find the sweet spot between background noise and nuisance, and come up with a strategy.


  1. Keep your profile (and tweets) consistent with your brand. The image you use, the handle you choose, even the voice of your tweets should all feel like a part of your company and your brand. Not only does keeping everything consistent eliminate confusion among potential customers and clients, it allows you to present your company as an organized and unified whole. And that, as you probably know, is appealing to followers.


  1. Use pictures. Cut through the text on Twitter with photos and graphics. Social media is increasingly visual, as users are recognizing that pictures are often more effective than words. Besides, if a picture says 1000 words, you can go way beyond Twitter’s 140 character limit with what you want to say. Using video is also good, though beware of overdoing it with A/V content; may users skip videos because they’re not sure that they want to make the time investment to watch something long.


  1. Take the time to reply to tweets that mention your company or anything relevant to it. Answer questions, address concerns, and take part in the banter when it’s appropriate. This sort of direct engagement with your followers demonstrates that you are committed to keeping customers happy, that you are listening to what they have to say, and that you are a regular reader of relevant tweets. It’s important to remember to be diplomatic, though. Remember, unless you send a private message, everyone can see your tweet. Represent your business well.


  1. Retweet (or RT) the good stuff. It’s not enough to send your own tweets on Twitter for you to be taken seriously — it’s important to show that you value the thoughts and opinions of others. In terms of marketing, though, there’s a bigger reason to RT on a regular basis: you’ll show up some new feeds, which may encourage new followers.


  1. Use Twitter and your website as a one-two marketing punch! In some tweets, encourage visits to your website by providing links. For this to work, it’s important to have new content on a regular basis; you’ll want to put up new blog posts, and then link to them on Twitter. Remember, on Twitter, your tweets are among many in any given user’s feed; if you can get followers to your website, you’ve got them all to yourself. Similarly, encourage your website visitors to follow you on Twitter. They may visit your website just once, but if they follow you on Twitter, you’ll continually be on their radar.


  1. Don’t forget the hashtags. Choose one or two to use regularly to promote your brand, plus pick up on trending topics (where applicable) to draw some new eyes to your tweets.

Using Twitter wisely can bring lots of attention to your company. And, the best part is that it’s largely free. You can, of course, promote tweets, but many marketing professionals believe that publicity that’s gained organically (or without being paid for, like an ad) is the most effective. Try these tips today to promote your business!