This is part two of a two part series covering SMX (Search Marketing Expo) Social Media Marketing 2012 at the Aria Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
With 340 million thoughts shared daily, 140 million + active users and a total of 163 billion tweets sent since its launch in 2006, Twitter is one social networking site you can’t afford to ignore.
Being a huge Twitter junkie myself, I was very excited to see the “Traffic Boosting Twitter Tactics” session on the agenda at this year’s SMX conference. Presenter’s Aaron Friedman, Spark Communications, Monique Pouget, Thunder SEO, Bob Stanke, Minnesota Timberwolves and Michelle Stinson Ross, Firestarter Social Media really blew it out of the water with their presentations. Countless tips, tricks, tools and best practices were shared with the audience and were surprisingly all news to me!
As with my previous post, I compiled the top Twitter tips and tricks mentioned during the session to help you succeed on Twitter:
1. Pick a dashboard and use it well.
Even before you start tweeting, download a dashboard (you’ll thank me later). Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, SproutSocial and CoTweet are just a few of the many dashboard options out there that will help you manage and monitor your Twitter account (in addition to Facebook, LinkedIn, Tumblr and more). Setting up your dashboard is as simple as creating a login and password, connecting your social channels and dividing them into “streams”.
Use your dashboard to monitor your handle, mentions, keywords and competitors. You will be amazed by how much time you save yourself. Additionally, most dashboards offer the option to set up daily/weekly reporting, simplifying your life as a social media manager just a little bit more. Nothing comes free though, these “premium” options usual come with a monthly fee as the basic (FREE) options offer little to analyze. Simple, easy and highly effective.
2. Tweet at the right time of day.
Have you ever spent a good chunk of time crafting a clever 140 character tweet, just to send it out and receive NO response in return? I know I have. It’s probably because it got lost in the over 175 million tweets that are sent daily on Twitter. Want to know how you can avoid getting lost in the crowd the next time around? It’s easy, sign up to sites like Follower Wonk, Tweroid and Buffer App and let the platform do all the work for you. Connect your account, submit the tweet you want to send and let the platform schedule the best time to send your tweet based on the activity of your followers.
3. Not everyone @mentions you…
Twitter is great for tracking the conversations that @mention you, but how do you find the conversations taking place where people aren’t using an @ sign before your handle? Platforms like Topsy, Backtweets and Hootsuite are AMAZING for helping you track the conversations that you aren’t seeing directly on Twitter.
Just paste the link or title you want to track….
and watch as the results pour in….
4. Find the best people to engage with.
By now, you should know the basics about Twitter and should hopefully be on your way to building a strong profile and community. Sometimes though, the audience that would really benefit and care about your updates don’t find you first.
In order to find the most influential and active people to follow and enagage with in your industry you are going to want to run a search on Twazzup, Social Mention, Tweepz or Twiangulate. Select 5-10 keywords that relate back to your brand and search for the people that best fit your audience description. The more closely related a user is to your industry or profession, the more likely they are to engage back with you and “fingers-crossed” follow you. Now follow, start a conversation and build your community.
5. Following the leader…
Following the right people is one thing, but being followed back is really what you want. To see who isn’t following you back or to see whose accounts are no longer active that you follow use Friend or Follow or SocialBro. WARNING: Don’t get upset when you notice that half the people you follow aren’t following you back. Instead of unfollowing everyone that isn’t following you, use this as an opportunity to reach out to them and try to gain their follow.
6. Participate in Twitter Chats/Start your own Twitter Chat
Nothing says “I’m an industry expert” like hosting your own Twitter chat, but it only really works if you have an army of loyal followers to begin with. Just starting out on Twitter? Try participating in the hundreds of Twitter chats that are happening every day.
Twitter chats are great for showing off your industry expertise, increasing your influence on a certain topic and building trust for your brand. Hosting your own chat is also a great way to generate new content for your website. Use questions or topics discussed during the chat to formulate a blog post, recruit your top chat participants to guest blog on your site and encourage your fans to promote your chat on off days (free promotion).
Being successful on Twitter takes lots of time, energy and resources. Building a presence on Twitter can take upwards of a year (and then some), so don’t lose steam after the first few months, especially if you aren’t seeing any response. By utilizing the above tools and taking the time to build out an effective content strategy you are sure to come out on top.
Happy tweeting friends!
Simone Coucill, PR & Communications Manager