As an account manager at PJ Web Solutions my job involves meeting with existing and potential clients on a regular basis. When I visit a client our discussions generally revolve around a website or web system that the client requires the expertise of the PJ Web Solutions team to help them progress with their business goals. I am however being asked more and more about how can social media enhance business by increasing sales and raising the overall brand awareness to potential clients. More specifically I am being questioned about Twitter and whether it is worth the investment in time and effort to integrate as part of any online marketing activity. It is this that has prompted me to create a blog about getting your business on Twitter and provide some do’s and don’ts when creating your Twitter profile for business purposes.
Setting up your Business Twitter Account
Twitter has become a phenomenon with literally millions of accounts which all require a unique Twitter username, meaning that even if you don’t intend to use Twitter straight away if your company name is available grab it while you can. In addition if your business owns any major brands you may want to consider securing these Twitter names as well as your own personal name or any close variations of it.
A question that needs to be answered when setting your Twitter account up is the possibility of using multiple accounts to represent your business. Thought needs to be given to the sorts of audience you intend on communicating with as well as how much time you feel you have to dedicate to Twitter. Common reasons to have multiple Twitter accounts are:
- Keeping areas of interest separate
- Separating business Tweets and personal Tweets
- Tweeting in different languages
Another common question that is often asked when setting up a Twitter account for business is should you use your personal name or your company name if you only intend on using one account for Tweeting?
Unfortunately there is not a definitive answer to this question. I can only give my opinion on this topic and I believe that the following is a good approach:
If you are a small, local business then there is a good chance that the people who are communicating with you on Twitter want to know who you actually are rather than talking to a company brand meaning that a personal account would be better.
On the other hand if you own a large well established company then you will find that people want to know less about you as a person and are more interested on getting a question or enquiry answered meaning that your company name is probably more suited.
Again this is simply my opinion – you could make your own judgement on what approach you use for your company based on individual circumstances.
Choosing your Twitter Name
Things to keep in mind when choosing your Twitter name:
- Even if you sign up to Twitter with the username ChrisEllison for example, Twitter is not case sensitive and other users will be able to look you up or Tweet you back using @chrisellison.
- Avoid using unnecessary symbols in your username such as underscores as these accounts require more effort to look up and Tweet, especially on mobile devices.
- Finally keep in mind you only have a 15 character limit when it comes to picking your username.
Upload your Picture
Ensure you upload a relevant, up to date profile picture to replace the default Twitter image. I know that a bug bear of mine, which is a complete turn off for me, is Twitter users who can’t make the effort to upload a profile picture. If somebody cant make this effort how serious are they about participating in intelligent conversation?
When it comes to what picture to upload, (image of you or company logo) again there is no definite answer and I would go with the same logic as mentioned above in “Setting up your Twitter Account”. What I would advise is to use the same profile picture across all of your social media channels as this potentially is a great way of building up your brand across more than just one network of users.
Write up your Twitter Biography
When writing your Twitter biography you have 160 characters in which to tell your story as well as include keywords that people can find you by and entice them to follow you.
Witty, interesting biographies with short sentences tend to attract followers far more than mundane, run of the mill biographies that are simply one long paragraph telling everybody how great you are. Be creative and take care in writing your biography as this small piece of text could be the difference whether you are followed or not.
When writing your biography also ensure that the link you include links to the page you want users to see. For example PJ Web Solutions may want to take people who click on the link straight to their ‘Back Office System’ page rather than their homepage. You only have 1 link that you can display, ensure that you make the most of it and give it the required thought before adding it.
So there you have it; a simple guide to help getting your business on Twitter. Although the process of creating an account may seem straight forward, give it the thought it requires, think about your overall strategy and don’t simply rush this process. The more thought you give and the quirkier you can be may be the difference between success and failure on promoting your business on Twitter.
Feel free to leave me any feedback or post your best practices when getting your business on Twitter.