Why Tweets are a Small Business’ Best Friends

Posted by on November 15, 2013 in Marketing, Social Media [ 1 Comment ]

Small business owners that take advantage of Twitter can build stronger customer relationships.Many small and midsized business owners rely on relationships that develop through brick-and-mortar spaces, often neglecting the opportunities online avenues present to extend consumer interactions. Establishing a meaningful relationship with consumers isn’t merely a byproduct of social media, it’s the reason businesses utilize these tools. Consumers are driven by engagement and research supports this idea. A Web.com Group survey of 3,000 consumers and small-business indicated 73 percent of respondents use Twitter to get updates on products or services the business provides.

Related: 10 Things Your Business Should be Tweeting About Every Day

What Makes Twitter a Winner?
An infographic provided by Search Engine People provides some fairly jaw-dropping statistics about Twitter users. For instance, over the past two years, there has been a 663 percent increase in users of the microblogging site asking for business recommendations (Tweet This Stat!). At the same time, 67 percent of Twitter users are more likely to buy from brands they follow. That means you need to be on the site and using it effectively.

Related: 5 Ways to Build Your Brand on Twitter with Meaningful Followers

How can Twitter Drive Engagement?
Piggybacking off the idea that 79 percent of Twitter users are more likely to recommend brands they follow, there are a few dos and don’ts that your business should look at to make sure customers will be compelled to keep up with you.

  • Don’t make your tweets look like spam. It’s a simple rule to follow. A glut of hashtags looks a lot like a robot’s been programmed to input the greatest number of keywords possible in the 140-character limit. Stick to a limit of two per tweet. But hashtags are an important tool for B2B companies. Companies in this category that incorporate hashtags into their tweets have seen 193 percent more clicks that those that don’t.
  • Make your tweets as shareable as possible. Do this by not completely using up all 140 characters, which allows others to retweet and add their own comments as they wish. What’s more, shortening your links can keep your character count down.
  • Link to relevant sites, case studies or other blogs that give consumers a wealth of information related to your products or services. Indiscriminate linking isn’t helpful for anyone and people will be turned off.
  • Look local. The platform allows for an advanced search option which allows you to type in a specific set of words in a given location. For example, if you sell coffee beans to retailers in the Seattle area, you could search “latte” or “coffee” in that city and find anyone who tweeted anything with those words. From there, send them a targeted tweet with your product offering.

Related: Develop your SEO marketing resources

Who is Making the Most of Twitter?
It’s important to look at the ways other companies have used the social media channel to give their business a boost. VentureBeat, an online source for news about disruptive technology, showcased the success of Alter, a clothing retailer in Brooklyn, which used Promoted Tweets to penetrate a Twitter audience beyond its followers. With this channel, the company offered exclusive deals or sneak previews of merchandise, resulting in a growing number of customers coming to the store directly asking for specific items they saw on their Twitter feed, according to co-owner Roy Caires.

In a similar vein, the outdoor gear company Rock/Creek used Twitter to generate excitement for Black Friday in 2012, using a countdown to show customers the savings and deals they could take advantage of – but only for a limited time. As a result, the company saw a 172 percent increase in followers.

Twitter’s true potential lies in how well it allows for a constant flow of information between businesses and consumers. Small enterprises can expand beyond word of mouth, and in-store customer relations management to take advantage of the technology instead of falling prey to the digital divide.

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