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Category Archive: Twitter

  1. 5 Reasons That Your Twitter Updates Are Resulting in Unfollows

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    unfollow 1

    Corporations, professionals, and socialites strive to gain loyal Twitter followers with a genuine interest in subscribing to their updates. Annoying habits, such as excessive use of hashtags, send followers running for the hills. Every person behind a social media profile should maintain a level of professionalism when choosing their words, and take precaution to not flood followers with too many unnecessary updates. Having too few tweets also causes people to unfollow a user due to lack of interest, despite offering potentially interesting or entertaining information.

    Save the mundane details of your latest meal for your real friends, and keep in mind all of the Twitter update mistakes that are resulting in unfollows.

    Excessive Slang & Bad Grammar

    twitter - 1

    Purposely speaking with poor grammar or altering spelling may appeal to the middle school crowd. Unless the company is selling Yo-Yos, it’s not going to turn out well as far as building a reputation with dedicated followers. Entertainers and young people have more leeway with their composition, but it does not reflect a good education or professionalism.

    Updates using “text talk”, uncommon abbreviations, and misusing capitalization slow down the readability of a brief 140 characters. Take the time to cleverly fit a message into one single update without butchering correct spelling and vocabulary. Always proofread prior to releasing a tweet out into cyberspace where it is displayed to followers looking for a clear, professional message. Although hashtags are not considered a grammar or slang issue, they also diminish credibility when used excessively. Never use more than two per update and keep in mind that they are not a necessity for any user.

    Extreme or Offensive Opinions

    Politics, religion, vulgarity, and offensive material have no place in the majority of professional businesses. One person representing a major company may take a clear stance on a controversial issue, such a homosexuality or abortion. Never trust a volatile employee take charge of updates that may lead to a rant on a heated subject. Although there are followers that may stand behind the opinion, there are just as many that unfollows due to the expression of a biased stance.

    A political candidate or special interest organization is expected to take a side that at times may seem extreme. Entertainers, businesses, and average people risk their follower base by making unnecessary public statements on personal opinion. Swearing or using slurs add shock value to a statement, but nothing of true value toward building a positive reputation.

    Tweeting Far Too Often

    Never trust anyone that gives advice stating it is not possible to tweet too often. This may be a tactic of marketing sabotage that some newcomers fall for unknowingly. Flooding a follower’s Twitter feed will get you noticed, and subsequently unfollowed. An occasional instance of back-to-back tweets may happen during major events, such as a promotional sale. If followers notice this becoming a trend, they scroll past all messages without taking the time to skim the contents.

    Eventually there is no reason to remain a follower to an account that offers nothing but an obstacle between interesting tweets. A good rule of thumb is to space posts throughout the day to reach the audience during peak times. It is difficult to predict when each individual is most likely to be reading through their feed, however, a post every 4-6 hours leaves few gaps in between. It is also important to think about potential followers seeing your profile as a suggestion by tweeting every few hours.

    Not Tweeting Often Enough

    On the other side of the spectrum, there are those on Twitter losing followers by not updating often enough. It takes skill to continuously provide quality content, but it is absolutely achievable as a part of every marketing plan. Use downtime to plan new, interesting tweets for the future. All it takes is one instance of interesting content being seen to quickly gain a follower. The user may just as soon unfollow upon noticing irregular updates. Skipping out on social media shows fans, customers, and potential clients that there is no understood value in marketing the brand. Not all tweets have to be strictly content, a clever or funny photo also entices users to click. Never waste an entire day without one single tweet to touch base with followers. Once a follower unsubscribes from updates, there is little chance they will ever be regained.

    Boring Topics & Mundane Details

    be appealing

    It is understood that most companies have only one person responsible for their Twitter upkeep. Never use it in place of a personal account for communicating with friends and family. Do not go out on a limb to complain about a flat tire on the way to work. There are more effective ways to relate to followers than to share mundane day-to-day details.

    Stay positive and upbeat rather than focus on any negativity that may be lurking in real life. A television advertisement would not use questionable tactics, and social media networking on the business level should maintain strict professionalism at all times. Celebrate an achievement or award with creativity instead of a boring numerical statistic. Reach out to followers on a personal level to address concerns or appreciate their good comments. By giving people interesting content to read it encourages brand loyalty and eliminates the desire to unfollow.

    Additional mistakes that people make include: constantly advertising without trying to engage the audience, auto-responding to followers, asking for retweets, and going over the 140 character limit. The entire purpose of using Twitter to build a brand or market a company is the reach out to people on a more personal level than mass media advertisement. Set a goal to personally reply to a few followers each day, whether it is to appreciate support or answer questions.

    Use real names or usernames, and strive to always personalize each response. In addition, a quality post gains its own favorites and retweets without having to beg for support. Things fall into place in time with the correct attention to detail. Users expect brevity in content presented to them, which makes it acceptable to avoid unnecessary information. Take the time to carefully edit to make a clear point or statement within the character limit. Never break a tweet into multiple messages under any circumstances.

    There is no scientifically proven method of building a solid stable of Twitter followers, and keeping them from unfollowing at some point. Recognizing the main mistakes that lead readers to unsubscribe from updates in their feed is the best way to avoid them. Observe the habits and strategies used by major corporations with a solid social media reputation to get an idea of ways to represent your own company.

    No matter how big or small, it is important to find a good balance of tweets per day without spamming the feed. Create interesting content that keeps followers interested, and has the potential to grab the attention of others. Always stick to strict guidelines for professionalism in terms of grammar, style, and content. Find a way to be appealing and add value to the profile by giving followers a reason or benefit for sticking around. Posting boring and mundane details is suicide for social media marketing tactics, and is a sure-fire way to be overlooked and unfollowed.

  2. How Many Times per Week Should You Be Posting to Facebook and Twitter?

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    How-Many-Times-per-Week-Should-You-Be-Posting-to-Facebook-and-Twitter

    When it comes to social media marketing, many small businesses assume that more information is better. They hire a marketing intern or someone from their marketing team to post to Facebook and Twitter multiple times a day. Unfortunately, these efforts may not be effective. Your business should be using Facebook and Twitter to connect with fans and followers, but posting all day, every day without a specific strategy is probably not helping you achieve your marketing goals.

    When considering how often to post on Facebook and Twitter, there are a variety of issues you must take into account. Consider the following factors when planning the frequency of posts in your social media marketing campaign:

    How Often Should I Tweet?

    Brand awareness and trust is created through the relationships that are formed by using social media outlets such as Twitter. You need to post enough to connect with customers without overwhelming them. Too many posts could be a waste of time and money, while too few posts could mean that you are not creating connections and new customers.

    So you are probably wondering exactly how many times per week you should tweet in order to carry out an effective marketing campaign. There is no exact number, but data shows that businesses who tweet around 30-35 times per week experience more success than those who tweet 10-20 times per week. Don’t let these numbers mislead you. There is no evidence that tweeting more than 35 times per week will lead to higher engagement.

    In addition to thinking about how often you should tweet, you should also consider when you should tweet. At 5pm each day, Twitter experiences a significant increase in retweets. Retweets mean more exposure for businesses, so you may want to focus some of your energy into this time period. Data also shows that Twitter users click on the most links between 12pm and 6pm. Weekend activity is also higher than weekday activity. Consider all of this information as you plan frequency and timing of your tweets.

    How Often Should I Post to Facebook?

    Posting 3-4 times per week on Facebook seems to be the magic number for most businesses. This will create the most number of likes for your page and increase other types of engagement. Surprisingly, posting too much on Facebook can be harmful to your social media marketing goals. Businesses posting on Facebook more than three times or more per day actually have lower engagement rates than businesses posting every other day.

    Timing is just as important when posting to Facebook as it is with Twitter. It’s quite common for companies to make the mistake of using the same strategy for Twitter as they do for Facebook. Facebook and Twitter are very different social media outlets! While it’s common for people to use Twitter in the workplace, Facebook is often blocked. Due to this reason, the majority of Facebook activity happens on weekends and evenings. Saturdays have the highest engagement rates.

    Experiment and Use Data

    Experiment-and-Use-Data

    Of course, these numbers are only guidelines. You will need to experiment and take a careful look at your data in order to determine the frequency and timing of your social media posts. Start by using the guidelines above and measuring your results. There are a few different ways to measure the success of your posts.

    For Facebook, you can use your page’s Insights in order to monitor engagement, post reach, likes, and other valuable data. Look for trends in your data and begin to experiment with the frequency of your posts. If you find that engagement is higher when you post just 2 times a week, then go ahead and adjust your strategy. Each audience is different, so you may be surprised what works.

    You can also track the success of your tweets using Twitter’s Analytics tool. You can find this tool in the Twitter Ads section of your account settings. This tool allows you to check statistics such as retweets, favorites, replies, favorites, and click-throughs. You are also able to see helpful demographic information about your followers.

    It’s free to use Facebook and Twitter’s data tools, but these tools may not meet your needs as your company grows. If you find yourself in need of more specific data, there are plenty of third party tools to meet your needs. While it’s wise to try the free tools first, you may want to utilize third party analytics tools as your marketing goals expand.

    Other Factors to Keep in Mind

    Lifespan versus Value-Facebook and Twitter posts have a short lifespan by design. These posts don’t last long and they are meant to, so don’t make the mistake of treating a social media post like a blog article. Depending on how many followers you have, the lifespan of a tweet may be anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. The lifespan of a Facebook post is a little longer at three hours.

    Think about the time it takes your staff to create content for these posts. Of course you need to have quality content, but you also need to create content in a timely manner in order to get value out of each post. In other words, your marketing staff should be thoughtful and strategic in their posts, but they shouldn’t be spending hours creating a tweet that only lasts for fifteen minutes.

    Relevancy and Currency-Your customers aren’t looking for cat memes or celebrity gossip when they make the choice to like or follow your business. They believe that you can offer them quality information that is somehow relevant to their lives. Of course offering a promotion or deal is fine every once in a while, but the majority of your posts should be content that speaks to a need or fulfills an informative purpose.

    schedule-Facebook-or-Twitter-posts

    There are many tools that allow users to schedule Facebook or Twitter posts ahead of time in order to effectively manage their social media marketing campaigns. These tools are very helpful, but they can also lead business owners to post content that may not be relevant or current for followers and fans. Some overzealous business owners find themselves hoarding content and scheduling future posts that are neither timely nor relevant to their followers.

    Marketing Goals-Before you create a posting schedule for your Facebook and Twitter, you have to understand your marketing goals. Are you just trying to get more followers? Maybe you are more focused on creating website conversions. You won’t be able to measure the effectiveness of your social media campaign if your aren’t clear about your goals.

    There is no exact science when it comes to the frequency of your social media marketing posts. First, take a look at what works for others. There is a strong possibility this could work for you as well. If you aren’t seeing the results you want, then it’s time to experiment with your weekly posting schedule. Mix and up and see what happens. If you are totally lost, remember the data doesn’t lie. Take a careful look at your analytics and page insights so you can understand what your customers are responding to. Used correctly, Facebook and Twitter can be powerful marketing tools. Make sure you follow the tips in this article to create the most effective posting schedule possible.

  3. Twitter Marketing: 5 Ways to a Successful Marketing Campaign

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    One of the greatest innovations in the field of online communication and marketing is Twitter. Perhaps the area where it’s having the greatest impact is in business. Twitter is being used not only to promote ideas, but also as an effective tool to build and nurture relationships with customers.

    What’s great about Twitter is that it lacks the characteristics that tend to intimidate marketers. It’s very simple and easy to use. Still, a lot of small businesses are hesitating to make a foray into Twitter for fear of the unknown.

    If you’re one of those small business owners who’s afraid to include Twitter in your marketing mix, here are a handful of tips to help you get up to speed.

    1. Free yourself from automation

    Running your Twitter marketing campaign using automation tools such as SocialOomph and HootSuite is fine, especially if you are updating your Twitter feeds on a daily basis. However, automation presents some potential pitfalls if used improperly.

    Completely automating your tweets takes away that golden opportunity to interact honestly and directly with your followers. Twitter marketing demands real-time interaction with your audience. If you use it right, you are not only pushing your company’s updates. Perhaps more importantly, you are trying to develop a potentially enriching relationship with your audience.

    You can delegate some of your Twitter output to an automated service, of course, but it’s wiser to devote some time to creating and distributing more personal content to your target audience.

    2. Pay attention to hashtags and streams

    The hashtag (#) is a very useful symbol first popularized on Twitter. Hashtags lead you to specific conversations devoted to certain topics. By using hashtags, you can more effectively place your messages or tweets in front of a healthy-sized mix of highly targeted audience. The converse is just as true: hashtags enable your audience to track your updates more easily.

    Also, it can be highly productive for you to follow streams about topics that relate to your business or various areas of interest. You can follow your competitors on Twitter to see what they are up to and monitor what customers and critics are saying about their activities.

    Of course, you should check up on any streams that involve what people are saying about your business or brand.

    3. Use monitoring tools to take the pulse of your market

    Apart from using or following hashtags or streams, it’s also smart to employ monitoring tools to listen in on your market. That’s because there’s a limit to how much hashtags and streams can deliver to you. There’s always a possibility that consumers are discussing you and your competition without using streams or hashtags.

    Tools such as Google Alerts will notify you any time there’s a mention of you, your brand, and your competition; they’ll also let you know where those mentions were made and when. By subscribing to alerts, you can still read and respond to consumers’ mentions of you on Twitter, even when they don’t use hashtags.

    4. Maintain consistency in your Twitter marketing efforts

    Your customers and followers will most likely be expecting some level of consistency from you. They expect you to update your Twitter feed at least once or twice a day, just as they assume other businesses and individuals will do.

    That’s why it’s important to stay active with your Twitter marketing efforts. You don’t always have to update them with information that relates only to your business. You can provide links to news that more generally involves your industry or market.

    The power of staying consistent is that it keeps your brand in front of your customers on a steady basis so they will always be reminded of you and your products and services.

    5. Avoid being overly self-promotional

    You don’t want to overdo it, however. Nothing turns consumers off like seeing their Twitter timeline stuffed with promotions. Twitter exists for sharing valuable information, not for spamming people. In other words, avoid being overly promotional.

    A good rule of thumb for promoting on Twitter is to tweet promotional messages only once in every five tweets, at most. The rest of your tweets should be a mix of information, humor, and links to videos and images.

    Conclusion

    Making proper use of Twitter will enable you to keep your brand in front of customers and help to nurture and solidify your relationship with them.

    To find out more about the various social media options for your business, contact us today.

  4. Twitter Marketing – Tips for Effective Twitter Networking

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    One of the mainstays of my online marketing campaigns is Twitter marketing. It should be high on your list of online sales tactics too. That’s because Twitter offers tremendous opportunities not only in terms of traffic, but also in providing value to your customers.

    With Twitter, you empower your business by establishing gainful relationships not only with your customers, but also with people that matter to your business.

    Twitter is a powerful marketing and networking tool. But how do you use Twitter more effectively to network with people that matter to your business?

    A lot of companies have failed miserably with Twitter. They got so caught up with the Twitter craze initially — creating a profile or two for their businesses — only to find themselves falling flat on their faces for lack of understanding about how to use Twitter effectively for their business.

    There are certain guidelines that you should follow in order for your operation to succeed with Twitter marketing. It all starts with value.

    How to create business value with Twitter

    Just like in the real world, relationships in the universe of social media don’t happen by accident. To create the kind of meaningful connections you seek on Twitter, the following should be present:

    • Relevant connections
    • Valuable content
    • Unconditional value

    Let’s look at each at each of these.

    Connections shouldn’t happen by chance — relevant connections

    Establishing a lasting relationship with others on Twitter should start by first determining your purpose in connecting with other people. What do you intend to achieve through these connections?

    Once you’ve determined your purpose, you will have a clear understanding of which people and organizations you need to connect with. You can purposely select potential connections to follow on Twitter. Ideally, you should find yourself following people with whom you have a shared interest.

    Providing valuable content

    Once you’ve connected with people on Twitter, you can strengthen your relationship with them by regularly and consistently providing useful content. By valuable content, we mean information your connections can relate to and are apt to be interested in.

    That’s why, when communicating on Twitter, it’s important to stay interesting and informative without being too self-promotional. Nothing will annoy your followers more than seeing a deluge of promotions on their Twitter timeline.

    To provide the best value, strive to vary the types of content that you share with your audience. You can provide links to other sites and pages that help them address their problems. You can also share links that furnish a little humor.

    Be careful, however, when doing so. It’s a good idea to be funny some of the time, but don’t overdo it, and try to avoid doing anything that risks offending your audience.

    You can also share videos that demonstrate solutions to your audience’s collective problems.

    Unconditional value

    Yes, it’s generally accepted that the purpose of establishing a Twitter presence is to expand your business. But in order for you to do that, you need to win the trust and approval of your audience. You need to establish yourself as a credible source of value and solutions first.

    The best way to take care of your audience is to provide unconditional value. This means you should be willing to share valuable information without asking visitors for anything in return. Remember, your goal is to cultivate a community of loyal followers for your business. You can only achieve that if you provide value first, and save promotion for a distant second.

    In fact, make that a rule of thumb when posting on Twitter: Constantly provide valuable information to your followers with minimal promotion. For every five updates that you send out, for example, only one should be directly promotional in nature. Not only will this impress your Twitter followers and earn their trust, but you may just find that they start feeding you useful content in return.

    Conclusion

    There you have it: some quick and simple tips for building your network on Twitter. If you want to learn more about how to grow your business with social media effectively, contact us to learn more about the opportunities.

  5. How to Make Your Twitter Tweets Work

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    Ah, Twitter! It’s one of the most wonderful communication and social networking tools available today. But, as many of us are finding out, Twitter offers more than just a great networking opportunity; it also makes a terrific marketing tool.

    With just 140 characters worth of tweet, Twitter empowers online marketers, allowing them to promote and expand their business. However, just because a tweet is only 140 characters long, that doesn’t mean that it has to be mediocre or superficial.

    It’s quite a challenge to make a pitch as short as 140 characters really hit its mark, especially in online marketing. So how do you make your tweets work?

    What’s your main point?

    Before sending out a tweet, think carefully about what message you want to put across to your audience. What is it you want to express? It’s the most crucial step toward composing a tweet that’s going to do the job for you.

    When you tweet, don’t think in terms of what you want to say; instead, think about tweeting in terms of what your audience would like to know.

    Whether your tweet is primarily humor, news, or marketing, it doesn’t matter, as long as you put some thought into proper targeting of your tweets.

    Edit and then edit some more

    Once you’ve determined your main point, write down several versions of your message. Write down as many as you can and then study them before choosing the one you think is the best.

    The process shouldn’t stop there, however. You need to edit your tweets before publishing them; otherwise, you’ll risk sending out a message laden with errors in spelling and grammar. Thousands of tweets go out each hour — not just from celebrities and men or women on the street, but from corporate marketers, too — that include unfortunate slips of the typing fingers and brain.

    As with other social media marketing activities, you must treat your tweets as if the life of your business depended on them. Go over the text and make sure every word is necessary. Do you really need that adjective? Will that adverb truly enhance your message? Does the phrase make sense? Is there any way to shorten it further?

    Go over your tweets several more times to see if they read well and make sense. Remember, tweets are marketing messages. You don’t want to hit that publish button only to find yourself (figuratively) falling flat on your face in public.

    Reserve some space for additional words

    Make it easy for your friends to pass your tweets along and share to others by way of re-tweets. How you do this is by making sure to leave space for at least two or three more words when you compose your tweets — to accommodate the symbol “RT.” If you max out the entire 140 characters, you leave no way for your followers or friends to re-tweet your message.

    Minimize the use of abbreviations

    Not all people know the meaning of certain abbreviations. While the abbreviations YOLO and FTW may now be widely understood and accepted, not everyone surfing the Internet gets their meaning. Especially if your business has the potential to appeal to people in different parts of the country (think rural versus urban), or potential overseas customers, you want to avoid pop Web acronyms.

    If you’re tweeting a business message, using abbreviations as though you were sending a text message makes your tweet sound unprofessional. So be sure to make your tweets shorter to accommodate words that truly matter to your marketing message.

    Let your tweets represent you

    By the same token, your tweets should represent you. That’s why you should ideally tweet with the same communication style you employ by other means. Without getting too informal, especially with abbreviations, try to adopt the distinctive, personal voice on Twitter that you use when you’re blogging or posting an update on Facebook.

    Not only will your long-time followers recognize and appreciate that, but newbies who like your style will be more likely to follow your links to your main site and blog.

    Conclusion

    Tweeting can do a lot more than just let people know what you’re up to. Effective tweeting will allow you to achieve greater success in business.

    To learn more about the various social media options available for your business, contact us today.

  6. Tweeting Your Way to Amazing Customer Service

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    Once upon a time, if a customer had a problem or wasn’t happy, he or she would have to call on the telephone and try to get through to someone who might help. Or maybe sit down and write a letter to your company.

    This could be annoying and make the problem even worse if the person wasn’t able to get the problem solved in a timely manner. Thankfully, today you have the ability to solve client problems almost instantly. That is, if you’re using social media for your business effectively. If that’s the case, all they have to do is log on and post their problem to you and get an answer in a very short time.

    One of the social media platforms that businesses are using the most these days to provide near real-time customer service is Twitter. Social media has transformed the way we think of customer service — in a good way. No longer do customers have to sit on hold, waiting to be put through to the right person. They don’t have to wait days on end for a problem to get fixed.

    Every day, more companies are realizing the power this gives them to keep their customers happy. Not only does it ensure they keep coming back, but when they receive top-notch service they’re very likely to tell others about it … and what’s better than free word-of-mouth advertising? You can even get new customers out of it. We’ll talk more about how you can reach more potential customers toward the end of this post. The main point is: Are you taking advantage of social media for your business?

    If your business isn’t using social media to reach out to or respond to customers, you can bet that one of your competitors probably is. And that’s not good news.

    When you use social media to interact with and serve your customers, that interaction is, for the most part, publicly viewable for anyone to see. Your comments and reactions to customers are visible to all. That means it’s essential to remain professional and personable at all times. If you feel a complaint isn’t justified, the last thing you want to do is blow a fuse and attack the customer. Stay calm and treat the person as you would want to be treated, and keep the image of your business a completely positive one. Respond quickly, respond calmly, and try to solve the problem.

    Here are just a few companies that use Twitter for customer service:

    Screenshot of Zappos customer service on TwtterScreenshot of ADT customer service on Twitter

     

    Tips for Using Twitter for Customer Service

    Set up a support or customer service account — If you’re already using Twitter for your business (and I hope you are), you’ ll want to set up a new account dedicated solely to customer service and support. Don’t try to blend your main account with customer service. Not everyone following you will want to see your support tweets; and companies who use their main accounts for customer service receive far more complaints than those who use a dedicated support account.

    Personalize everything — There are many ways to come across as personable beyond just doing your job. Assign users to your support channel. Each one should operate under a personal name instead of just “customer support.” Support tweets should also end or sign off with that name. Whenever a support tweet is sent, use the @ symbol with the names of anyone who may need to or want to see the tweet. Include a personal photo instead of a logo.

    Reach out to possible new customers — Tons of questions are asked on Twitter each day. How many of those could be somewhat relevant to your business will of course depend on what line of work you’re in. But you should always be watching (or searching). There’s the normal Twitter Search, but it isn’t very time-effective. Also, you’ll often get flooded with results that are spam tweets or aren’t really applicable.

    A very neat alternative I came across is InoxQ. You can easily search Twitter by keyword to find people who are talking about something related to your business. If you use HootSuite, it can hook directly into that. But personally, I like how lightweight the Chrome app is (there’s also one for Firefox and Seesmic). Install it and connect your Twitter account and you’re ready to go.

    Simply click on “new campaign” as shown below.

    Screenshot of setting up InboxQ campaign

    1. Enter a name to identify your campaign.
    2. Use the slider to determine if you want more results (possibly not as high quality or closely related), or fewer ones that are of higher quality.
    3. Enter some keywords (if you enter fewer than three, it will return exact matches only)
    4. If there are keywords you do not want to be associated with and get results for, you can use the negative keywords option.

    Click save.

    Do this for all the campaigns you want to set up and then they’ll show up in the campaigns tab, like this:

    Screenshot of campaign list in InboxQ

     

    Click the campaign name to do a search. (Later you can also view stats of that campaign, edit it, or delete it.)

    Here is what the search results look like — this was for pizza; real original here :)

    Screenshot of IngoxQ chrome app search results

     

    Now, when you find someone asking a question related to your business, you can help them out. Reply and answer their question, follow them, and send them a direct message. By helping them, you’ve just placed your company in their sights.

    Conclusion

    There’s no excuse for bad or slow customer service anymore. Twitter is just one of many ways you can use social media to connect with your customers, offer support, and get your business in front of potential new customers. If you don’t know where to start, need help creating a social media plan, or would like someone to handle it for you, just contact us.

    We can help you make a plan or we can do it for you. We’ll monitor everything and interact for you, and you don’t have to worry: you’re always in good hands. If there’s anything we’re unsure about, a question we can’t answer on your behalf, or we’re not sure how to reply, we’ll always communicate with you. You can tell us the correct answer or you can jump in on those occasions and handle it.

  7. Top Twitter Tools for Social Media Marketing Dominance

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    I’ve had huge successes with Twitter. It has provided me with bursts of significant traffic to some of my content, it has helped me track ideas and issues that matter to me and my audience, and most importantly, it has helped me create meaningful relationships online.

    With the hundreds of Twitter tools available to help us achieve our marketing goals, Twitter has become incredibly powerful and handy.

    But before we delve into five tools I especially want to recommend for you, here are some tips to make tweeting a more worthwhile effort for your business:

    Don’t be overly promotional on Twitter
    Twitter brings terrific value to me and my audience. I am able to filter the flow of information so I only get news and data from connections that matter my business.

    This is an essential function because there is simply too much traffic on Twitter from people seeking to spam users with nonsense and overly promotional material. Incessantly hitting the self-promotional note is an instant turn-off for people who populate the Twittersphere.

    Take advantage of lists and Twitter’s search feature
    Lists helps you to organize the people that matter to you so your feed tracks no one but them. It’s very useful when you need a quick look at issues you are particularly interested in.

    The list features also help you filter information you may need instantly, such as an events, breaking news, and local business developments.

    Always observe the 80/20 rule
    The 80/20 rule is one of those unwritten laws of the Internet, which states that 80 percent of your tweets should consist of valuable information which is likely to interest your community.

    Such information could be retweets or information from other sources. The 20 percent constitutes your own stuff, such as links to your posts and promotions.

    Treat your tweet as a headline
    Tweets should capture the attention of your audience the way a powerful ad does. That’s why it pays to learn some copywriting techniques before trying to come up with compelling tweets that others are apt to act upon or retweet.

    Below are some of the Twitter apps I personally use to complement my Twitter marketing:

    SocialOomph
    This is one of the most powerful web-based Twitter tools I’ve used. It allows you to manage multiple social media accounts and it lets you automate your Twitter messages in an efficient way. You can even create automated welcome messages for new followers.

    Twylah
    Similar to a Facebook fan page, Twylah automatically creates landing pages where your followers get directed. This app lets you segment your followers into categories for several of your marketing campaigns, making it a perfect list-building tool for your Twitter followers.

    TweetAttacks Pro
    TweetAttacks Pro lets you target specific users; it’s a great tool for link building. What I like about this one is that it has the ability to weed out fake followers so you can firm up a roster of Twitter followers that are valid and real.

    Tweet Spinner
    TweetSpinner helps you schedule your tweets, track followers, view statistics, and manage your Twitter profiles.

    Facebook’s Twitter App
    Nothing is more convenient for active Facebook users who are also active on Twitter than an app that lets them update both profiles simultaneously. With Facebook’s Twitter app, users can send updates to Twitter via Facebook.

    Conclusion
    If you’re an active social media user, take the trouble to determine which of the apps for Twitter will work best for you. Ultimately it will depend what you use Twitter for and how.

    But be sure to familiarize yourself with Twitter’s rules and regulations on automating accounts. Use Twitter apps to save time and resources, and keep in mind that when using apps, you shouldn’t compromise the quality of your followers’ experience.

  8. Update from Twitter

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    Got this in my inbox this morning. These changes are pretty significant. I’ll re-post it here for anyone who may have missed it:

    Subject line: Update: Twitter Apps and You

    Over the coming weeks, we will be making two important updates that will impact how you interact with Twitter applications. We are sending this notice to all Twitter users to make sure you are aware of these changes.

    What are applications?

    There are over 250,000 applications built using the Twitter API. To use most applications, you first authorize the application to access your Twitter account, after which you can use it to read and post Tweets, discover new users and more. Applications come in many varieties, including desktop applications like TweetDeck, Seesmic, or EchoFon, websites such as TweetMeme, fflick, or Topsy, or mobile applications such as Twitter for iPhone, Twitter for Blackberry, or Foursquare.

    Update 1: New authorization rules for applications

    Starting August 31, all applications will be required to use “OAuth” to access your Twitter account.

    What’s OAuth?

    • OAuth is a technology that enables applications to access Twitter on your behalf with your approval without asking you directly for your password.
    • Desktop and mobile applications may still ask for your password once, but after that request, they are required to use OAuth in order to access your timeline or allow you to tweet.

    What does this mean for me?

    • Applications are no longer allowed to store your password.
    • If you change your password, the applications will continue to work.
    • Some applications you have been using may require you to reauthorize them or may stop functioning at the time of this change.
    • All applications you have authorized will be listed at http://twitter.com/settings/connections.
    • You can revoke access to any application at any time from the list.

    Update 2: t.co URL wrapping

    In the coming weeks, we will be expanding the roll-out of our link wrapping service t.co, which wraps links in Tweets with a new, simplified link. Wrapped links are displayed in a way that is easier to read, with the actual domain and part of the URL showing, so that you know what you are clicking on. When you click on a wrapped link, your request will pass through the Twitter service to check if the destination site is known to contain malware, and we then will forward you on to the destination URL. All of that should happen in an instant.

    You will start seeing these links on certain accounts that have opted-in to the service; we expect to roll this out to all users by the end of the year. When this happens, all links shared on Twitter.com or third-party apps will be wrapped with a t.co URL.

    What does this mean for me?

    • A really long link such as http://www.amazon.com/Delivering-Happiness-Profits-Passion-Purpose/dp/0446563048 might be wrapped as http://t.co/DRo0trj for display on SMS, but it could be displayed to web or application users as amazon.com/Delivering- or as the whole URL or page title.
    • You will start seeing links in a way that removes the obscurity of shortened links and lets you know where each link will take you.
    • When you click on these links from Twitter.com or a Twitter application, Twitter will log that click. We hope to use this data to provide better and more relevant content to you over time.

    Thanks for reading this important update. Come and check what’s new at http://twitter.com.

    Thanks,
    The Twitter Team

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