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Twitter Marketing: The Ultimate Guide

  • Post category:Social Media
  • Reading time:20 mins read

Twitter is a powerful social networking tool and search engine in which you can typically find the latest information about virtually any topic. This also rings true for updates pertaining to the companies and businesses you might follow. Businesses are able to market on Twitter to engage users and followers, increase brand awareness, boost conversions, and more…we’ll touch on the ‘more’ later. Twitter makes it easy to distribute content with over 326 million average monthly users globally.

The thought of engaging with hundreds of millions of prospects via a free social media platform sounds pretty intriguing, right? However, how do you ensure you’re generating phenomenal content those people will want to interact with while on Twitter? In this guide, we’ll answer that very question along with some others including what a Twitter marketing strategy looks like, how you can use Twitter for your business, and what tips/tricks you can employ to help improve your Twitter marketing efforts.

Ready to get started? Great, let’s roll!

Twitter Marketing Strategy

What is a Twitter Marketing Strategy?

A Twitter marketing strategy is a plan centered around creating, publishing, and distributing content for your target personas, audience, and followers through the social media platform. The goal here is to attract new followers and leads, boost conversions, improve brand awareness, and increase sales.

You will need to follow the same steps as if you were creating any other social media marketing strategy when planning your Twitter marketing strategy:

  1. Research your buyer personas and target audience
  2. Create unique and engaging content
  3. Organize a schedule for your posts
  4. Analyze your impact and results

You might be wondering what exactly makes Twitter unique. Why would you want to invest the time in creating a profile and content for the platform?

What Makes Twitter Unique?

Twitter is an awesome marketing tool for a number of reasons. The platform:

  • is free to use.
  • allows you to share and promote branded content in seconds.
  • expands your reach.
  • allows you to provide quick customer service & support.
  • works as a search engine tool for you to research your competition and their marketing content to see which tactics they’re using.
  • can be used as a search engine tool for prospects to find and learn more about your company.
  • allows you to converse with your followers, share their latest updates about your company, and address your audience.

Having just reviewed what a Twitter marketing strategy is and what makes the platform unique, let’s shift gears and cover the ways in which you can use Twitter for your business. The following tips will help you boost conversions, create lasting relationships with your followers, and improve your overall brand awareness.

How to Use Twitter for Business

As you start using Twitter for your business, there are a few steps you’ll want to take to make sure you reach your target audience. Depending on your goals, company size, and industry, you may choose to work through each of the following steps. Odds are you’ve already completed some of them, so please tailor them to your needs.

1: Customize & Brand Your Profile

Whenever someone looks at your company’s Twitter profile, you want them to know that it’s yours right away. This means you should customize and brand your Twitter profile with your logo, colors, and any other recognizable details you want to include. There are a few locations in which you can customize your profile.

Handle

Your Twitter handles is your username – for instance, mine is @andrewroche99. You should include your company name so that your followers, customers, and fans can easily search and find you. FYI, you create your handle when you sign up for an account.

Header

The header on your Twitter profile is your background image. You might elect to create a unique image for your header, use your logo, or another branded image.

Profile Picture

Your Twitter profile picture represents your company’s every move, interaction, post, and tweet on the platform. It’s the image that sits above your bio and may include a picture of your logo, company’s initials, or the CEO.

Bio

A Twitter bio provides your audience with a brief synopsis of what they’re about to see in 160 characters or less. It might include your mission statement, a blurb about what your company does, or something humorous and entertaining.

Website URL

This is an essential element of any Twitter marketing campaign. Under your profile picture and bio, there’s a spot where you can include your URL to direct traffic directly to your website.

Birthday

Next to your URL, you can insert your company’s birthday – or the date the company was founded – so your audience gets to know your business on a more personal level.

Twitter Profile Breakdown

2: Create Twitter Lists

A Twitter list is an organized group of Twitter accounts you’ve selected and put together in specific categories. For instance, a few of my lists include Digital Marketing Leadership, Brilliant WordPress Minds, and Blogging Brainiacs. When you access a list, you only see tweets posted by accounts on the list.

Twitter lists are awesome if you want to follow only specific accounts. You might segment your lists into groups such as business gurus, competitors, and target audience. Doing so makes it easier to review their posts, interactions, and overall content.

3: Host a Twitter Chat

Hosting a Twitter Chat is a great way to engage with your followers, discuss a topic, create a sense of community, and ask your audience for their input on something you’re currently working on.

To host a Twitter Chat (aka TweetChat), you’ll need to pick a topic, set a time and date for the chat to occur. Most importantly, you need to select and share a #hashtag for the chat. You need to tweet this information out to your followers, share via your website, or where ever else you wish to promote it well beforehand (24-72 hours).

Everyone who wishes to partake in your Twitter Chat should then be able to view all interactions pertaining to the topic of the chat by searching the unique #hashtag. This is a prime way to engage with your audience since they can easily share their comments and thoughts by adding the #hashtag to their tweets.

Twitter Chats help promote interaction and engagement. They also get people talking about your brand. Lastly, Twitter Chats are awesome because they create a more personal experience between your audience and your business.

4. Advertise on Twitter

Advertising via Twitter is a phenomenal way to reach your audience. Doing so will make your tweets easily discoverable by thousands of people, which helps you increase your influence and following. You can do this through promoted tweets or Twitter Ads.

Twitter Marketing

Promoted Tweets

Promoted tweets are essential to a strong Twitter marketing platform. They make your content appear in the Twitter streams or Twitter search results of specific users. This is a superb option for anyone looking to direct users towards a specific webpage. Your business will pay a monthly fee as long as you’re promoting a tweet.

Twitter puts your promoted tweets in a daily campaign targeting the type of audience you want to reach as previously indicated in your settings. All Twitter users have the ability to interact and engage with Twitter Ads the same way they would with your organic content.

Twitter Ads

Twitter Ads are an awesome option if you’re using different types of tweets to achieve one goal for your business. It’s perfect if you’re looking to grow your base of followers and brand awareness via the platform. Your business can choose between different end goals when it comes to your Twitter Ads including app installs, video views, and website conversions, as well as audience targeting for your campaigns. This decision will ultimately impact the price you’ll need to pay in order to run your ad.

5. Drive Traffic to Your Website

Twitter is a great tool to help drive traffic to your website. There are a number of ways you can accomplish this task. Here are just a few of the methods you can use Twitter to send traffic to your website:

  • Add your website URL to your bio on your Twitter profile.
  • Incorporate links to your website in your tweets.
  • Retweet any content that features a direct link to your website and/or blogs other people have shared.
  • Embed tweets on your website with a Twitter Timeline.
  • Setup Twitter Ads to drive users to a specific landing page on your site.

6. User Twitter Moments

Twitter Moments are collections of tweets about a specific topic or event. They’re kinda like a “best of” sampling of tweets pertaining to the topic of your choosing. For instance, Twitter’s Moments section includes “Today”, “News”, “Entertainment”, and “Fun”. You can even create your own section of Moments for your followers to view on your profile.

You might organize your Twitter Moments into groups of tweets to help you market your business’ events and campaigns or related industry news. They also help with your marketing tactics by providing your business with an engaging way to promote the discussion of certain topics and/or events that matter to your company to help you share your brand image with your audience.

Twitter Marketing Plan

7. Get Verified on Twitter

You might opt to apply to get your Twitter profile verified depending on the size of your company and your industry. Twitter states they typically only accept requests for account verification if you’re involved with “music, acting, fashion, government, politics, religion, journalism, media, sports, business, and other key interest areas.” If Twitter does accept your application and verifies your profile, a badge with a blue checkmark inside will appear next to your handle. All this means is that your account is authentic.

The main purpose behind verified accounts is to prevent your audience from following and being confused by impersonator accounts or accounts with similar content, usernames and handles to yours. A verified account also makes your business look more legitimate and trustworthy.

8. Focus on Building Your Follower Count

It should go without saying, but the more Twitter followers you have, the more people there are looking at and interacting with your content. You’ll have a better chance to improve brand awareness and direct more traffic to your website when you build your follower count on Twitter.

There are a number of ways you can employ to increase your follower count on Twitter – here are a few to help you get the ball rolling:

  • Make sure your content is sharable.
  • Use unique hashtags.
  • Create engaging content (giveaways, contests, questions, surveys, etc.).
  • Enlist the help of Twitter (social media) influencers.
  • Include links to your Twitter profile on your website.
  • Interact with your current followers and retweet their content so they’re more likely to do the same for you.

Now that we’ve reviewed how to use Twitter for your business, let’s go over some tips and tricks you can apply to your profile to improve your Twitter marketing efforts.

13 Twitter Marketing Tips

The following Twitter marketing tips are straight-up universal in nature and application. This means that they’re applicable to any business, in every industry…

Use Keyword Targeting in Your Twitter Ads

Keyword targeting on Twitter is a component of Twitter Ads. Keyword targeting allows you to engage Twitter users through the different words and phrases you’ve included in your content and they’ve searched for on the platform. This means you can reach your ideal target audience at the exact time your business, content, and services are most relevant to them.

On Twitter, there are two types of keyword targeting you can use including search and timeline.

Search Keyword Targeting

Seach keyword targeting allows you to make your tweets show up for users who are actively searching for the topics you determined as relatable to your business.

Timeline Keyword Targeting

Timeline keyword targeting allows you to act on users’ specific feelings, thoughts, actions, and emotions that they’ve tweeted about.

Implement Hashtags

Did you know that tweets with hashtags receive 2x as much engagement as tweets without them?

Adding hashtags to your tweets is a great way to expand your influence on Twitter. However, there are a few guidelines you’ll want to stick to when using hashtags to ensure that you reach the largest possible number of people.

  1. Create a hashtag that is unique to your business so your followers and target audience can easily find you and your content.
  2. Create relevant and memorable hashtags for other groups of tweets such as ones related to a specific campaign you’re running.
  3. User Twitter Analytics to review your most successful hashtags so you can ensure their use in future tweets.
  4. Don’t overuse hashtags – this may feel and look spammy to your audience…plus, it’s visually unappealing.  Furthermore, tweets with more than 2 hashtags see a 17% decrease in engagement than those with 1-2 hashtags.

Hashtag Marketing Strategy

Organize a Content Sharing Schedule

As you grow your base of followers, you’ll need to post on a regular basis to ensure that they stay engaged with your business and content. Not only do you want to tweet on a regular basis, but you also want to tweet at the right times of the day. Here are some details about the best times (on average) for businesses to share their content on Twitter:

  • Between 8-10 am and 6-9 pm during the weekday – this is when people are stuck in traffic to and from work.
  • Around noon or between 5-6 pm any day of the week.
  • B2C companies thrive on the weekends.
  • B2B companies thrive during the week.

There’s no real rule as to how often you should post your content on Twitter. It’s more about ensuring that the content you share has a purpose and meaning. You can also review Twitter analytics to take a deep dive into what your engagement looks like on the days you post more or less content to figure out what’s working well for your specific target audience.

Social Media Management Tools

Once you’ve determined when and how often you’re going to post your content, make sure to make use of a social media management tool. Doing so will allow you to both create your tweets and schedule them in advance so you can focus on other tasks that require your attention.

Here are a few examples of popular social media scheduling tools you can use for your Twitter marketing strategy:

  • Sprout Social rocks! It provides you with a range of features to help you reach your target audience and buyer personas through Twitter including platform analytics, engagement tools, scheduling capabilities, and details about the type of content your audience craves.
  • Twitter Analytics allows you to analyze your tweets, understand which content is helping your business grow, and learn about your followers.
  • HubSpot has a social tool that allows you to schedule posts in advance, connect directly with your audience, and understand how your Twitter interactions are helping your business’ bottom line.

Create a Twitter Campaign

Social media marketing campaigns of any kind are a stellar way to reach your audience and increase your website traffic. You can create a social campaign tailored for Twitter users and increase your follower base all while raising your brand awareness through the platform.

To create a Twitter marketing campaign,m you’ll want to follow the same steps you would with any other social media marketing campaign.

  1. Research your competition
  2. Determine how you’ll appeal to your target audience
  3. Choose the type of content you’ll create
  4. Share and promote your content
  5. Analyze your results

Write a Strong Profile Bio

Crafting a strong and memorable bio for your Twitter profile is critical. This is because your Twitter bio is the first thing a profile visitor will read about your brand. Think of it as your written introduction. It should briefly explain what visitors can expect from your page and content. You only have 160 characters to do this, so choose your language wisely to ensure your bio successfully represents your brand and reflects who you are as a company.

Use Images and Video

Whenever possible, try to include quality videos and photos in your tweets. It’s been proven that tweets with images outperform tweets consisting of just plain text. Photos and images provide a captivating and engaging element in your content as Twitter users scroll through their feeds. Videos are proven to actually outperform tweets with images as well. In fact, tweets with videos are likely to get an average of 6x the engagement frequency than tweets without videos.

Both videos and images are a great way to show your audience your product line or how to use an item. They’re also a superb means to make your content feel more personal. Furthermore, images and videos in tweets are proven to help increase your engagement – let’s be honest…who doesn’t want that in the end!?

Interact with Your Followers

It is critical that you continue to engage and interact with your followers as your business grows and Twitter follower count increases. This will help you develop experiences for your followers and audience members that feel personal and keep them coming back to your profile. This is all accomplished while also fostering a sense of brand loyalty. For instance, if someone retweets your post or comments on your tweet, you can “like” that person’s engagement or even step things up with a reply…it’s really that simple!

Twitter Marketing

Share Media Mentions

If the media happens to mention your brand, you best share the article/video/image/URL on Twitter. It’ll make your business feel more legitimate to anyone checking out your profile. It also shows prospective followers the strength of your current following. Better yet, it’s a stellar way to showcase how others are enjoying your products or services.

This is an exciting method to broadcast your success to your audience. It also provides you with the means to incorporate backlinks in your tweets which, when clicked, take your audience members to the initial source of the mention. This also means that you’ll drive traffic to the website of the media outlet that mentioned you. This, in turn, will likely boost their follower count and/or brand recognition. This could potentially help you become mentioned, shared, or featured in one of their content pieces again down the road.

Keep an Eye on Your Competitors’ Twitter Accounts

Twitter is an awesome way to keep an eye on your competitors’ marketing efforts. You can follow them or simply search them to see what sort of content they’re posting. You can also view basic details about their engagement such as their retweets, comments, and responses. This is a simple way to study some of the marketing strategies your competitors are employing and whether or not they’re working.

Focus on Followers’ Interests and Needs When Creating Content

In order to reach your audience and ensure your content resonates with them, you’ll need to focus on their needs and interests. It doesn’t matter if it’s in relation to the way you share content, what you share, or how you present it.

When you meet the needs of your target audience and buyer personas, they’ll likely continue to follow and interact with your company. As you study your buyer personas and target audience, you’ll eventually figure out the type of content they’re likely looking for you to share. Furthermore, you can always tweet questions, send out surveys, ask for feedback, or even create a Twitter Chat (we discussed this earlier) to get more ideas about the type of content your audience is looking for from your business and your Twitter profile.

Promote Your Events

Twitter is a great way to promote your business’ events. Similar to how you might for a Twitter campaign, you can create a hashtag for various events. You can also schedule an array of tweets to promote any special event your company is hosting. This way, audience members will have an opportunity to learn about your event before registering.

Check Your Direct Messages on the Regular

Like every other social media platform, Twitter provides users with a direct message inbox. This is a great way to engage with users in a one-to-one setting. It is also a great way for your audience to ask sensitive questions or voice opinions. That being said, make it a point to check your inbox on a regular basis. Doing so can contribute to the type of customer service your business is known for, as well as the care you provide followers and customers.

Keep Track of Your Analytics

With all the work you’re putting into your Twitter marketing, you’ll want to ensure that you’re hitting your target goals. It doesn’t matter if they’re related to increasing inbound traffic to your site or improving brand awareness.

You can determine your Twitter marketing success in these areas by analyzing your work. First, you’ll want to consider which metrics matter to you. Then you’ll want to determine how you’re going to track them.

Which Metrics to Track on Twitter

Due to the unique nature of every business, you might not find every Twitter metric useful. However, here is a compilation of possible metrics for you to consider.

  • Engagement: Look at the number of retweets, follows, replies, favorites, and click-throughs your tweets garner.
  • Impressions: Review the number of times your tweets appeared on one of your audience members’ timelines. It doesn’t matter if they’re following you or not.
  • Hashtags: Look at which of your hashtags are being used by your audience and followers.
  • Top Tweets: Review your tweets with the highest levels of engagement.
  • Contributors: Keep up with the level of success each of your contributors are having with their tweets. This allows you to implement some of their tactics more regularly or remove them completely.

Analytics Marketing

How to Track Twitter Analytics

There are a handful of social media management tools, such as Sprout Social, HubSpot, and Hootsuite, with analytics features built-in. This is helpful for those who were already planning on using a management tool to assist with scheduling your posts. However, one of the most common analytics tools for Twitter is the one created specifically for the platform – Twitter Analytics.

Twitter Analytics

Twitter Analytics is awesome because it helps you understand how your content impacts your audience. It also helps measure your activity on the platform so that you can grow more effectively and efficiently. The tool is 100% free, accessible to all users, and includes info about your Twitter engagement rate, impressions, tweet activity, and information about your followers.

If you wish to do so, you can incorporate Twitter Ads data in Twitter Analytics as well. Lastly, there are a plethora of third-party resources and apps you can download to use in tandem with Twitter Analytics. These resources and apps allow you to take a deeper look at specific types of data such as hashtag performance or how other Twitter handles are doing in your industry.

Closing Thoughts

When all is said and done, Twitter is a wicked powerful marketing tool and social media platform that any business or brand can take advantage of. It is capable of directing more traffic to your site, improving brand awareness, engaging your audience, forging relationships, boosting conversions, and increasing sales. That being said, you should definitely consider Twitter as a viable avenue for your business to pursue.

Andrew Roche

Andrew Roche is a Digital Consultant at Shift Digital. He is also pursuing an MBA in Marketing & Finance through the Mike Ilitch School of Business at Wayne State University