Nowadays, in order to reach your target audience and amplify the existing one, it is all but required you have a Twitter account. However, simply being on social media is not enough. If you want to get noticed, you need a strategy for reaching your audience and then know what to do once you catch their attention.
When you compare it to other social media sites, Twitter is more impersonal. To find someone on, say, Facebook or LinkedIn, you know who they are and at least (most of the time) have met. Once you add or connect with them and they accept, you immediately have access to lots of personal and professional information: where they are from, where they went to school, where they work, etc. With Twitter, one can find themselves clicking through hundreds of profiles based on keywords, topics or hashtags yet not know a single tidbit of personal information about the person whose profile they are visiting. To you, these profiles are the fish in the Sea of Twitter.
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While Twitter is less personal, it still serves as a fantastic means of expressing a pain point and when users post about pain points, they use hashtags and keywords as breadcrumbs to lead you to them. From there, dip your pole in the water to show them you have a solution. And when they bite, you reel them in. However, this is much easier said than done.
In order to attract attention to your profile, you need to make people interested in it. This can be done through posting content. It is important to post links to articles and stories that meet certain requirements. They need to be interesting, engaging and relevant. Sure you could post something about the newest season of Game of Thrones because it’s interesting and engaging, but how does that help your potential clients? You could post an article about an internal company event. It’s certainly relevant, but to a Twitter user scrolling through tons of stories in their feed, it is not interesting enough. Plus nobody likes the person who is always tooting his or her own horn (though it’s acceptable on occasion). By posting content that others will look at and start to look forward to, you will build your followers (audience).
Once you attract attention, start interacting. In the Sea of Twitter, it’s important to make as many connections as possible. Think of it as micro-networking. When networking in person, you introduce yourself to potential clients as a Solution Provider, then probably make small talk about interesting ideas and stories. On Twitter, it’s no different except the small talk is already done for you in the form of posts. Once someone has read it and acknowledged it through a retweet or favorite, thank them. Eventually questions and comments will start to form around your posts as your audience becomes more engaged. This is when you can really engage by responding to comments, asking questions and promoting discussions. By making followers more comfortable over Twitter, you can bring them around to the idea of working together. Again, Twitter is the same as in-person networking only less verbal and more textual.
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One last thing to keep in mind when working on your Twitter strategy is to not only create relationships, but also maintain them. Don’t come out guns blazing, posting every few days then stop abruptly. Continue to post a few times a week and continue to promote and mention and comment, but don’t fade away. It looks unprofessional to have an account where nothing happens and consistent interactions keep your audience engaged and works in your favor in the long run.
Overall, this is a solid foundation with which to base your strategy. It is different for everyone and needs to be tailored to fit your specific needs. Take this and fill in the details for your situation and over time it will certainly help. To get more ideas for specific tactical (instead of strategic) Twitter methods, look at some of our other blog posts like “5 Simple Tips for Growing Your Twitterverse” and “Twitter Newbie? @Mentions and #Hashtags and Tweets – Oh My!” Now get to fishin’!