July 29, 2009
Twitter is a social media platform that helps you drive your website and establishes a connection between you and your audience in a way you’ve never been able to before. Twitter should be a very important part of your online branding and marketing strategy.
The key concept of Twitter is the real-time search. Search engines generally work with old material while Twitter gives you real-time information on different topics. This can be used to increase your website traffic and exposure by finding, getting in touch and providing value to people interested in the services and products that you provide.
People come to Twitter when researching, when they have questions and when they wish to learn something about different subjects. “What are you doing?” field is used for lots of different remarks and questions. By scanning what people are talking about on Twitter, you can assume the role of a search engine by answering questions from your target audience in real-time.
1. Track down and follow your target audience
Track down people that are interested in your products and services by using tools like http://search.twitter.com, http://tweetdeck.com or http://monitter.com. Search for targeted keywords and start following people from your target group. When you follow someone, you will be listed in their profile in the “Followers” list so they will have a chance to take a look at your profile, see what you tweet about and what you stand for.
2. Think of your Twitter profile as your website homepage
Because of this it is important to have a great Twitter profile. Think of it as the front page of your website. You must provide value in your tweets for the visitors to subscribe to you and to visit your website. Do that by pointing to interesting articles you’ve found online, and build credibility and influence that way. Sharing information, sharing knowledge and helping people is the best way to build credibility and influence. Add some commentary and insights into some popular topics related to your field. Ask good questions and talk with those who answer you.
3. Brand yourself as an expert in your field
Keep following what is happening within your field and make sure that you become known for twittering on a subject related to your product or service. By linking to different quality resources, people will look at you as an expert on the topic, an expert who likes to share knowledge with his followers.
The overall effect of you only writing relevant messages will be cumulative in the long run as branding is a subtle process that occurs over time. You will become branded as an expert who provides regular insight into your topic and this will expose you to other people who are interested in your subject.
To have a good brand means to create good, value experiences for your customers. People trust good brands, and will therefore be more inclined to purchase your product or hire you based on your brand and what they hear about you. So having clear and consistent branding will help you stand out from the crowd.
4. Be active and get in touch with your target audience
When you have discovered people in your target group, do not just follow them. Be more proactive. Show your knowledge and the value you can provide to the potential customer by connecting, answering to questions, helping them out with their problems, and providing them what they are looking for. This way you can help out a potential customer directly when they need the help and in that way show your knowledge and expertise and hopefully turn that person into a paying customer.
This is a very simple and instant way of connecting to your target group and showing them why you are the expert and why you deserve their custom. You will be the authority in their eyes and you will be differentiated from your competitors that do not use Twitter and that do not connect with their target group directly.
Marko Saric is a blog consultant blogging about WordPress and blog optimization at How To Make My Blog. Marko has just published an e-book on all things about Twitter marketing.