With so many social media platforms to choose from today, are you debating if Twitter is even worth your time and effort?  Or have you forgotten about Twitter since the other platforms have, sort of, overshadowed it?

Despite many claims:  Twitter is not dead.  It’s alive and kicking…maybe not profitable, but it’s still doing what it does best–connecting people to each other and valuable content in real-time.

Despite many claims: Twitter is not dead. It's alive and kicking...maybe not profitable, but it's still doing what it does best--connecting people to each other and valuable content in real-time. Click To Tweet

Why Twitter is Still Relevant for Business

While you don’t have to get caught up in the shenanigans of social media, you do have to utilize it to be successful in business for now and into the foreseeable future.  Twitter is the only social media platform that provides up-to-date, real-time interactions between two or more parties.  These interactions can be in the form of words, videos, gifs, or pictures.  It’s so fast moving that tweets (the posts that you send out from your account) average a “relevance” lifespan of about 10 minutes.  This means that basically, once you tweet something (a.k.a. post something), it has about 10 to 30 minutes max before it goes into a “black hole”, meaning that it doesn’t show up in the rolling Twitter feed of your followers any longer.

This makes sense because the tweet is no longer “new” news and Twitter is about what’s happening now.  The most recent posts will always trump the older posts unless someone revives it with a viral retweet.  Sure, you may get a retweet of something that was posted months ago, but that’s rare and typically done by a bot trying to get your attention (a.k.a get you to follow an account back and then unfollow you once you cave in).

It’s important to understand how powerful social media is for businesses.  It’s a critical component of any marketing plan today and into the foreseeable future.  If you don’t have time to create a strategy and execute it on a daily basis, check out the services of TPM Focus Marketing.

Don’t Get Carried Away With Automation

Automation is great, no question about it, but you must know when and how to best use it.

Here’s a rule of thumb:  Only use social media automation to distribute the valuable content you create. Click To Tweet

If you’ve created a blog post, helpful video, an event promotion, etc.—automate your heart away to keep it circulating in your Twitter feed.  However, don’t use automation to be spammy and keep generating the same nonvaluable information or sales pitches over and over again.  That will cause people to unfollow you/your business for sure.

We practice another rule of thumb:  For every 20 pieces of valuable content you provide, put one offer in the mix. Click To Tweet

You have to give more than you take–it is what it is in these days of digital marketing and short attention spans.  This means to be absolutely sure not to continuously blast out offers to buy your stuff–this is taking.  Followers will get annoyed and reconsider why they followed you in the first place.  Instead, share valuable information with your followers and connect with them in a real way–this is giving.  The key to social media, especially a real-time feed like Twitter, is to ENGAGE.

There are several social media automation services out there that are pretty simple to use–Hootsuite, Buffer, et al.  These tools are not meant to entirely replace a live person taking the wheel.  They’re meant to save you time, but not eliminate the need for human touch and connection.  After all, this is social media.  It’s not effective if everyone is using automated services to “talk” to each other.  It would just end up being software communicating with each other and no real connections made.  (By the way, that’s the worst nightmare of social media platforms which is why several of them ban automation services and require real-time posting–Instagram is a prime example).

There are several social media automation services out there that are pretty simple to use--Hootsuite, Buffer, et al. These tools are not meant to entirely replace a live person taking the wheel. Click To Tweet

Get Engaged

Commit time each day, or at the minimum, each week to engage with your followers and follow other interesting, yet relative, people and businesses that are ACTIVE on Twitter.  It’s nothing worse than following a business or person that tweets once a month.  It’s a waste that actually lowers your followers-to-following ratio, and we all want that to figure to make sense (1:1 is great in a perfect world, but no one is perfect, right?).  You’ll want to follow accounts that follow you if, and only if, it makes sense.  It’s not necessary to follow everyone back who follows you, especially since you can engage with everyone whether you follow them or not.

What do we mean by “engage”?

We mean: Respond to mentions (when people post something and use your @username thereby tweeting directly to you).  Respond to tweets of interest.  Thank people for following you.  Ask questions directly to a person or account by first typing in the @username and then stating your question.  Use the same tactic to ask for opinions on a topic of mutual interest.

You see, engaging is not hard, but it does take time.  Make the time, or hire someone to take the time, to engage.  Otherwise, your social media isn’t very “social” at all and you miss the point and benefits.

Click To Tweet

Twitter (as well as several other social media networks) is a powerful tool, that when used correctly to regularly engage, can bring meaningful relationships with customers, partners, and prospects.

Have questions about marketing your business using Twitter?  Contact TPM Focus Marketing below.