Tweet! Market Your Business With Twitter

Twitter is one of the fastest-growing blog sites on the Internet. The basic idea behind Twitter is to give people a free online forum in which they can update a network of friends, family, associates and co-workers about their activities in a brief message (i.e. “I’m bored at work right now and can’t wait to eat that pizza in my fridge at home!” or “Weather is bad in Philly today – wish I was on the beach”).

Because the messages are so short (less than 140 characters), it is referred to as “micro-blogging.” People seem to like Twitter for its ease of use and instant connection into people’s lives. Even small businesses have gotten into the act, using Twitter as a popular marketing tool.

Basic Definitions

Before you get started, here are some basic terms you will need to know:

  • Twitter – the overall service/web site that provides free accounts to Internet users
  • Tweet – The short messages you type for the public to see (remember, they must be no more than 140 characters)
  • Twitterati – Members of Twitter/ power users of the site with large followings

Use Twitter to Increase Awareness of Your Business

The first way to use Twitter as a marketing tool is to increase the level of awareness of your business and services. By posting regular messages about your sales, events or personnel, you can give a human face to your company. In addition, regular tweets also inform customers of business updates and provide a chance to interact with you personally. Finally, tweets inform bloggers and techies about your company, which can influence online reviews of your products.

Since Twitter is still an emerging source of Internet marketing, you want to point people to your Twitter account as much as possible to build up your client base. Include a Twitter link in your company’s email signatures and invite clients to become friends online as a regular part of your networking conversations and communications. An effective way to do this is to encourage clients to join Twitter to keep abreast of last-minute changes or notices (i.e. “I’m running late for the meeting” or “Dinner’s been changed to 6:30pm”).

Clever Campaigns

After you’ve gained awareness of your business, you can begin to reach out to potential customers. PR-Squared.com gives a great example of how to use Twitter to target your desired audience. In this example, they use the large drug company Pfizer (Stock Quote: PFE), but the method is applicable to many types of companies of all sizes. By simply conducting an outside search on tweets containing the word “depression,” the pharmaceutical giant could send out messages to twitterati about their drug Sinequan, which is made to treat depression.

The same methodology can be applied for your sporting goods, consulting or hair care business. Once you narrow down your potential clientele, based on specific keywords that relate to your services, you have a built-in audience that is ready to hear your message. And the best part is … it’s completely free!

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