Twitter 101 Series: Take the Next Step with Twitter Engagement
If you’ve been following along with our Twitter 101 Series, you’ve been working toward strengthening your brand’s voice by increasing your Twitter following (an integral part of any internet marketing optimization campaign). Hopefully, you’ve been making strides — gaining followers by posting unique content, strategically retweeting, exercising good twittiquette and monitoring activity with TweetDeck.
Now, armed with a strong Twitter profile and the beginnings of a brand voice, it’s time to take your relationship with Twitter to the next level. That’s right. I’m talking engagement.
Great tweets packed with valuable content need to be seen by users who are searching for the information you’re sharing and the products/services you’re offering. Hashtags are what bring brands and users together.
“People use the hashtag symbol # before a relevant keyword or phrase (no spaces) in their Tweet to categorize those Tweets and help them show more easily in Twitter Search. Clicking on a hashtagged word in any message shows you all other Tweets marked with that keyword. Hashtags can occur anywhere in the Tweet – at the beginning, middle, or end. Hashtagged words that become very popular are often Trending Topics.” — Twitter
Let’s say you own a bridal store and you’ve tweeted “10% off ALL wedding dresses on May 15.” Sure, your followers will see the tweet, and that’s great … but what about all the brides-to-be who aren’t following you? To grab their attention, you should utilize hashtags:
“10% off ALL wedding dresses on May 15 #wedding #weddingdress #herecomesthebride #bride”
If any potential customer searches for those hashtags, she’ll find your tweet. That’s how you engage users. You consider your potential customers’ persona (in this case, a Twitter-savvy bride-to-be looking for a dress) and use targeted hashtags, much in the same way you would target keywords on a website.
Say “I Do” to Twitter Chatting
Hashtag use extends beyond simple categorization. Hashtags are the cornerstone of Twitter chats. And Twitter chats are key to having real time conversations with potential clients, as well as like-minded professionals you can network with.
The Twitter Chat Master Schedule is open to all on Google Docs. Looking at the schedule, our hypothetical bridal shop owner might find she is interested in the weekly #Weddings2013 chat, where she can chat with potential customers and discover what topics are at the forefront of brides’ minds week to week. Or maybe she’ll participate in the #SMBFunChat, a “bi-weekly chat for small business owners” that discusses “topics that are critical to the success of a small business.”
Or maybe she has a blog on her website. Many business owners now reach customers through business blogs. Then she might be interested in #BlogChat, a popular weekly chat that occurs on Sundays at 6 p.m. PST. How do you participate? It’s easy. Just log on to Twitter at 6 p.m. and type #BlogChat. Click “all” and, voilà, you’ve created a feed of streaming tweets.
In addition allowing you to dialogue and problem solve with your customers and colleagues, Twitter chats invariably lead to more followers. Just last night, I participated in Viveka von Rosen’s #LinkedInChat (Tuesdays at 5 p.m. PT). In addition to getting some answers I’d been after regarding LinkedIn, I was able to share my latest LinkedIn article and gain new followers, all thanks to the #LinkedInChat.
This is the fairytale example of how Twitter chats work: individuals coming together to both give and get information and create relationships in the process.
Why not take the plunge into Twitter chats to learn more about your industry, promote your brand and grow your Twitter following?
Your brand voice and Twitter chat — they’re a match made in Tweaven.
For more from our Twitter 101 series, check out:
- 10 Basic Steps to Increasing Your Twitter Following
- Twitter’s 5 Best Friends — TweetDeck, Bitly, TwitLonger and More
- Get Retweeted! Taking Dan Zarrella’s Advice
Hopefully you’ve enjoyed the Twitter 101 Series. If you have Twitter tricks and tips of your own, please share them in the comments!