How to use twitter – Part One

This is a short primer that I started writing on using twitter. My main goal in writing this is to stress the fact that TWITTER is EASY! Twitter is not something that you should have to hire a third party “Public Relations firm” to do for you! Twitter is something that you can sit down with and get a good grasp on in a couple hours.

Most importantly DO NOT HIRE A FIRM WHO AUTOMATICALLY TWEETS FOR YOU. This is a BAD idea, trust me!!!

The purpose in using twitter is to engage your local community. The more they are reminded of your firm when they are online the more they are likely to choose to give your firm their business.

Twitter is not just a one-way discussion. It’s a way for you to interact with your followers (clients or potential clients) and provide value (deals) to people who interact with you. This is why having a third-party tweeting is less effective than having someone who is physically at working at your location.

So I got on Twitter, Who do I tweet to?

I like to think of twitter in 2 groups of users:

Local active social media “players”
These are people who have over 500 followers and are actively tweeting and interacting with the community. Interacting with these people will help you leverage their followers. You meet the “players” by going to tweetups and interacting with both through twitter and real life. Miami is a HOT spot for these types and going to “Refresh Miami” meetups will easily get you a couple of hundred new twitter followers. The problem with the “players” is that everyone knows everyone, and many people get caught up with chatting with them and ignoring the people who are actually making you money.

Local twitter users
Your local twitter users are the heart and soul of twitter. They are the twitter users who go out with their friends and give you business. They may have 20 friends or they may have 4 friends, but engaging with them and turning them into a fan of your business is an extremely valuable thing.

If you want to find a good list of Local twitter users, please refer to my Big West Palm Beach Twitter Directory. You can also use the twitter search feature and search for tweets near your ZIP code. This is done by doing a query like this “near:33401“, it’s a fun way to “meet” new local people.

When deciding who to engage you have to use your discretion – I like engaging as many local people as possible, while keeping lines of communications open with the social media “players”.

So I’ve opened my twitter account, started following locals and social media players. Now what do I tweet about?

There are SO many things that you can tweet about, it’s just a matter of remembering to do it. I always say “If you think about it, tweet it.” but then again, I probably tweet too much!

Here are some more ideas:

  1. Pictures (my specialty) everyone likes a picture.
  2. Engaging DEALS – a random attaching a picture of a beer and tweeting “They first person who can identify this beer deal gets a beer on the house” – every few days is VERY effective. People will respond.
  3. Nothing – everyone likes a few random tweets which are not related to anything specific.
  4. Promotions – most places JUST tweet the lunch specials. This is BORING and they might as well not tweet. When mixed into your other tweets they are very important.
  5. Retweets – if you see that someone tweeted “I went to @roxyspub and had a bbq chicken” just hit the Retweet button and it will send it out again from you.
  6. Reply to your customers – if you see someone tweet “I’m bored tonight, is anything happening on Clematis” reply with “Come to @roxyspub first beer is on the house”
  7. Interact with new people – I make an effort to reply to seemingly random tweets from local people who I haven’t yet met.

I could go on and on.

In the next part I will continue to discuss some basic strategies for twitter, as well as talk about how often you should tweet & what NOT to tweet about.

Have a great day.

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