Twitterers can be a fickle bunch, especially when it comes to marketing using the service. For every marketer that succeeds on Twitter, there are ten more that are pushed out with cries of ‘spammer’ and slightly unjustified anti-marketing discussion. As much as certain areas of the internet love to be marketed to, Twitter users are highly selective in what they find worthy of being marketed on the platform.
That is the reason why you have got to achieve two things when you market on Twitter. The first, and in the long run, most important, is to build an audience that is happy with you being there.
The power comes with long-term followers, and that is what makes marketing easy. The second, of course, is to sell products, services, or whatever your end result is. Don’t worry — Twitter is not an impenetrable marketing tool, but it does require some long-term strategy. These five tips will help you learn, market, and adapt:
1. Use the 80/20 promotional rule.
No, it is not Pareto’s efficiency rule. The 80/20 promotional rule is for Twitter marketers who want to increase the amount of influence and success they have using the service. Following it is simple — just make sure 80% of your tweets are non-promotional, and that 20% are. That means that for every product or business tweet you send out should be balanced with four great, value-adding tweets that help your followers out.
2. Direct message people back.
Social media is all about connecting, and for Twitter users the best way to connect is through direct messages. If you have got two-way followers, connect with them one-on-one. While Twitter is designed to be public, some users love the privacy and control that direct messages provide. If you want to generate real company-customer connections, reply to messages whenever possible and deliver personal service to your followers
3. Give your account some personality.
‘Cheap Auto Loans’ is not interesting, at least not enough for Twitter. All over Twitter there are businesses tweeting using their business name, and nobody’s listening to them. Why? Because they have got no personality. People use social media to connect with other people, not companies and trademarks. Instead of just using your company name, assign a real name to your account, and let people know what you do in the description field.
4. Incorporate feedback into your advertising.
If people are getting tired of constant promotional tweets, slow them down. What is great about Twitter is that it gives marketers a second chance; if people are not enjoying your tweets, they will tell you right away. Instead of flying blind, incorporate DM and @reply feedback into your campaigns and social media efforts.
5. Find power users, and let them market for you.
It is amazing what free samples can do. Even a complimentary t-shirt can reduce a Fortune 500 CEO into an excited fanboy. Connect with people that are respected on Twitter and let them use their influence for your own products. Twitter users trust power users — give them the power to market for you and you will see real results.