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Tech Tips for Small Businesses: Use Twitter

We'll show you how Twitter can help Galloway business owners reach out to their customers.

It can be extremely difficult for small businesses to reach out to their customers in a significant and meaningful way. When used correctly, Twitter can help a small business owner overcome that particular problem.

Before you can use Twitter as a tool to help promote your business, you first have to understand what Twitter is and why people use it.

Twitter is a microblogging service that limits each post to 140 characters. That limit forces Twitter users to post concise messages, essentially distilling each thought they want to express down to its most basic form.

People from all over the world use Twitter to engage in conversations with other Twitter users, and just about every topic you can imagine gets discussed. In other words, whatever industry your company covers, someone’s talking about it on Twitter.

So you should create a Twitter account and start sending out links to your company’s website, right? Not exactly—while you do want to send out links to your products and services, there are a few steps you’re going to have to take before doing so.

When creating your account, keep in mind that people aren’t signing up for Twitter to be advertised to, they’re signing up to have conversations with other people. Don’t create an account for your company, create one for yourself, and mention your company and its website in your bio.

Once your account is set up, take a minute and get familiar with the layout and the process of creating a tweet. Once you’ve done so, it’s time to start finding users to follow.

The type of users you should be following directly depends on the type of business you’re promoting. For example, if you’re looking to promote a restaurant, you’ll probably want to stick to Galloway residents, and residents of nearby towns.

You probably have some idea of who you want to reach, so we’re going to focus more heavily on who you should avoid.

There are a lot of Twitter accounts out there that follow other users indiscriminately. If a Twitter account is following more than 1,000 people, your tweets will be lost in an ever-expanding sea of tweets. Since the object here is to be seen by other users, it’s best to avoid following users who follow a lot of people.

It’s also a good idea to avoid accounts that just post link after link to their own website. Most of the time, those accounts are automated, and no one ever takes the time to look at it. As such, the owner of the account would probably never see one of your tweets.

Once you’re following somewhere between 50-100 people, it’s time to start tweeting. So, now it’s time to start posting links to your own website, right? No, not yet.

Start by tweeting useful or entertaining information. If one of the people you’re following asks a question, answer it if you can. If someone you’re following says something funny, retweet it to your followers.

By taking the time to engage in conversations with other users, and post interesting things, you’ll attract more followers.

Once your follower count reaches 50, start working tweets about your business into your Twitter stream. Just to be clear, you’ll still have to keep tweeting about other things.

By working tweets about your business into an otherwise interesting Twitter stream, your followers will be far more likely to pay attention to them.

In the right hands, Twitter can help you to get the word out about your business. Follow these steps, and you’ll be able to use Twitter as an effective tool to reach your customers. 

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