Monday, 6 February 2017

Business-to-Business markets? Will Twitter's initial B2C success translate into B2B?

Big Numbers

The premise of Social Media Marketing is sound, indeed. Since Everett Rogers introduced the concept in his seminal book, The Diffusion of Innovations, the concept that a large percentage of any market space can be reached through a vocal minority of "influentials" has been widely held. Today's viral marketing campaigns are built on that very premise. Marketing guru Seth Godin compares these influentials to "sneezers," who advance the spread of ideas through a population, the same way infected people spread viruses.

And if large populations spell success for marketers, then Twitter holds great promise.

In April of 2016, Twitter revealed some impressive stats, boasting that 106 million registered users were posting an aggregate 55 million new tweets every day. Granted, those are some big numbers! Still, I can't help but recall that large numbers of people turned out to see George McGovern in the 1972 Presidential race, and Richard Nixon won the election with a landslide 23% margin in the popular vote - the widest margin in any U.S. presidential election.

The Power of the Internet

"Hold on!" say Twitter advocates, "The Internet is different. It's a phenomenon, a social tsunami. The Internet cannot be ignored, and neither can Twitter."

No one would deny the power of the Internet. Of the 344 million people believed to be living in North America in 2010, an estimated 77.4% (266 million) are using the Internet. According to USA Today, Americans spend nearly a quarter of their Internet time on social networking sites. And while we're networking, we're changing the way America does business. In a recent survey of Internet users, Brandweek reported that 31% of respondents said they used social networking sites to gain information on companies and products, and 20% have discussed brands in social networking forums, after seeing them advertised elsewhere.

Success Stories

So what, exactly, is the great Twitter promise? Well, according to Twitter, the medium's conversational tone lets you build relationships with customers, it makes you more accessible to constituents, and it shrinks the emotional distance between you and your customers.

Case studies, published on Twitter's site, offer proof. A spokesman for JetBlue says Twitter helps his company maintain customer relations.  Australian winemaker Teusner Wines uses Twitter to get feedback from customers. And Dell, Best Buy, Levis, Pepsi, and American Apparel all join Twitter's song of praise for Twitter.


I have an advantage over Gen X marketing managers: I've raised teenagers. So when someone comes to me with the argument "But Dad, everybody's doing it!" I'm just not moved. Particularly, when I'm in the B2B world and Twitter's success stories are all B2C!

Pete Blackshaw, EVP of Strategic Services at NM Incite, a Nielsen/McKinsey company, warns about getting caught up in the hype. Blackshaw urges marketers to "get back to boring," lest we lose sight of the fundamentals like trust, customer relations, emotions, feedback, listening, patience and leadership.

From a B2B perspective, I would have to agree.

Before venturing into social marketing, let's make sure our other marketing efforts are in place and working well. Let's remember to carefully define our brands, develop robust but achievable marketing plans, and refocus our corporate cultures on customer-centered, brand-positive behaviors.

Then, let's see what we can do with YouTube (whose links can be easily embedded in existing email campaigns and viewed directly from any desktop - no membership required). Let's look into Facebook (a community of 500 million users averaging 130 linked friends and representing 700 billion minutes of activity monthly). And then, if we're still looking for ways to deplete our bankrolls, let's join the Twitter experiment.

One Miley at a Time

Time alone will tell whether Twitter is the vanguard in a sweeping overhaul of the way people communicate or just the latest in a series of failed social experiments that allow participants to self-identify based on their absolute self-absorption. [deliberately extreme viewpoints]

...Though I would venture a guess that a larger percentage of Miley Cyrus Fan Club members tweet than Wall Street Journal readers - so if you are marketing to CEOs of major corporations, Twitter may not be your best investment.

Heck, even Miley has become disillusioned with Twitter. "It's kinda stupid," Miley told Letterman on the June 17 Late Show, "cause I'm like you can't complain about like, 'Oh I don't have a private life! And I'm so upset paparazzi are following me!' if you're going to tell them where you're going."  Sheer genius.

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Sunday, 5 February 2017

Twitter And Marketing Are The Yin And The Yang To Getting Your Message Out There

It has been assumed for quite some time now that the new "social" media marketing was the sole responsibility of the millennial generation, Twitter and marketing were on opposite sides of the fence. Twitter was the responsibility of those strangely independent cause oriented workers that were as at home on their smart phones as they were on their laptops.

These strange new breeds would work in tandem with the wool suit 9-5 crowd at the office that were pushing direct mail flyers, scheduling radio spots and working contacts they had know for thirty years.

In reality there were two forces: a yin and yang, a push and a pull, a driving movement and a resistance. However in the later stages of the last decade the two camps began to merge and Facebook pages were popping up for established conservative nightly news programs and Twitter was being seen a viable component to the marketing of a business.

It is important to note that Twitter is an "aspect" of the marketing side of the business, it is still no replacement for your effort in marketing planning and other strategic operations.

Twitter and marketing are not 2 distinctly separate activities these days, one is merely a tool of the other, and Twitter and marketing must exist in harmonious balance.

So how does the modern day samurai balance the soft side and the hard side, the yin and the yang, the dynamic dance between Twitter and marketing? The answer is in the application of the tool in relationship to your overall strategy. As a list of bullet points Twitter should be used to:

1. Provide a low cost marketing alternative that gives a link or an overview to additional information (you will not be able to post your entire newspaper ad in the tweet).

2. Align your Twitter and marketing efforts to make sure your message matches your audience. If the message is not geared toward those that use Twitter it is not exactly viral material (look at Toyota's branding of Scion as an example of focus marketing).

3. Make sure what you are tweeting is relevant, people will gladly be introduced to new products, but will be turned off by attempts to spam.... If you want to spam go back to direct mail.

Lastly utilize your Twitter and marketing campaigns using a defined set of KPI (Key Performance indicators) and know what you are looking to get, is it more followers, higher conversion or simply more brand exposure? All of these will require a slightly different approach and need to be tailored accordingly.

Get your free Twitter for business report today

Friday, 3 February 2017

Twitter for Business - Why Bother?

Today, just about everyone will have heard of Twitter unless they have been hiding away somewhere. It is probably the fastest growing social network on the internet, taking the internet by storm with an average of 10,000 new sign ups on a daily basis. Twitter is a micro-blog site where you answer the question "What are you doing?" in 140 characters or less.

Promote your business and gain more traffic

In essence, Twitter is a relationship building tool. The obvious business use of Twitter is to meet potential customers. SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) consultants will advise that Twitter should be used to drive people to your company's website through linking to your content. To do this you should tweet about interesting news, stories and information. This could be the latest blogs you have posted, recent press releases or a white paper that can be downloaded. Tweeting this information with a back link to the relevant page on your website can be extremely valuable. If your content is of a high quality then people will start tweeting about it and share this with their Twitter friends.

A social media site like Twitter is also useful for promoting events. The next time your company is holding an event or seminar, tweet it out for full exposure to your Twitter community. By tweeting about events, useful resources and thoughtful tips, your company will eventually become an expert and people will begin to consider you as a specialist in your area of expertise.

Monitor your brand

Twitter as a social media platform allows you to monitor your brand. You can search and track what people are saying about your company, products, competitors or any other buzz words in your industry.

Twitter has a favourites feature. On your Twitter stream you are able to "star" a tweet which adds it as a favourite. As you track what people are saying about your company, you can "star" all the positive tweets. This is valuable information as you can then show the public what is being said about your brand and company. When you get an enquiry about your company you can send them the link to your favourites on twitter.

Offer real-time customer service

Another important role of Twitter for business is to use it as a virtual customer service centre. By responding to customer comments or concerns about your company or products via Twitter you are helping them in real time - answering their queries, responding to negative feedback and giving help to customers. This speedy response will impress your customer no end. Plus it will show other potential customers that you care. Not only this you can also inform your customers if there are any problems with your website, or if your site is down for maintenance and for how long.

Getting support

It is important to remember that the Twitter community is dynamic and growing all the time. Using a social media consultant to devise a creative and powerful Twitter campaign can be extremely rewarding for your business.

When getting started, using Twitter can seem very daunting and it's likely that you will need the support of a local digital marketing and SEO company who specialise in social media marketing services. Specialists in this area will be able to help you with your Twitter marketing requirements. Don't forget to use blogs and forums where possible as there will be lots of people who are happy to provide further support and talk about their own experiences and successes carrying out different internet marketing strategies.

Get your free report today and learn how to drive traffic to Twitter

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

The Power of Twitter Marketing

Modern technology has made our lives so advanced and prosperous that we find today we are almost incapable of living without it!

The world of marketing is now being influenced by the different platforms available on the internet to effectively reach consumers around the world.

Some of these online tools were not originally designed for marketing but have recently found a niche in that arena.

Opportunities are being introduced to entrepreneurs that they never dreamed of having at their fingertips.

One of these tools that was not designed for marketing but instead was a social network is Twitter.

Twitter is a large community of connected and interrelated people that are already internet savvy.

This is the perfect combination for promoting your business, your brand, or whatever goods and services that you have to offer.

Begin with making yourself a Twitter account and you're off to conquer the Twitter community!

First, you should develop a marketing plan that is complete with strategies and goals for your company.

You should include details on how you will present your company and the offers that you provide.

Good tactics should be employed that showcase your company in a positive light with a subtle approach.

If you are too aggressive, you will create negativity and the results will not be what you had planned or desired.

Provide reliable reasons that the client should buy your product and include any testimonials if possible.

A strong marketing plan will assist you in getting off on the right foot and reaping the rewards of higher sales and profits.

Getting the whole picture of the status of your business is important as you create marketing strategies that enable you to reach your goals.

Twitter offers many helpful tools that will assist you in tracking the traffic driven to your website, your followers, their tweets, and additional information that helps you to better plan your advertising campaign.

You can immediately learn how your business is rated, what your followers think about your business, and the level of your customer satisfaction.

With this plethora of information, you can modify and adjust your strategies.

Another powerful asset of Twitter is that you can interact directly with your customers.

This is important in business because it establishes a more personal touch with those clients.

Customers who are happy and satisfied will spread the word and provide you with the best and most affordable advertising known to man, word-of-mouth.

Customers want to buy online because of their tight schedules and demanding deadlines so if they can access your business on Twitter, they can have your business in the palm of their hand; this right where you want them!

Your traffic will expand by leaps and bounds and profits will increase exponentially.   This is an on-going project that you will carefully be improving and implementing.  Once you have your plan that is complete with strategies and goals you will want to begin to consider the audience you want to attract and how you will accomplish this.  Good tactics will carry out and execute the strong plan that you have in place.

It is more effective to have your photo on your Twitter account.

This will give your business that personal touch and your clients won't feel as if they are talking to a corporation or unknown entity.

Also, carefully construct your Twitter bio; clients will read this to see who you are and what your business is about.  Keep it clear, concise, and articulate.

By using a couple of other marketing tools, your Twitter account will work more smoothly for you.

Use and which allow you to update schedules and post your social media messages across social media browsers such as Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin all at the same time.

Hootsuite will allow you to schedule tweets ahead of time at no cost.  Some days it might be difficult for you to have a presence on Twitter so this tool allows you to schedule out a tweet whenever you want to share an idea or you find a related link that you want to discuss.

These tools will also help you to organize your Twitter account and activity in a more efficient way and can help you to send out communications when you are working on some other aspect of your business.

To succeed in business on the internet, you must stay as informed and as current as possible.

You must keep up with the latest news, fads, and trends that occur sometimes on a very rapid basis.

Your basic marketing strategy with Twitter must be about interaction with customers.

A customer on Twitter expects to state his opinions and feedback as part of your advertising campaign.  Twitter encourages this communication and the trust of your clients will be gained from this interaction.

This is one of the most powerful tenets of using Twitter marketing.

By following some simple steps, you can use Twitter as an efficient marketing tool for your business.

Follow like-minded people who are already interested in your product.

Millions of Twitter users are added each day and many of them have an issue which your product can solve.

It's of the utmost importance to connect with those people who would be interested in what you have to offer.  Many users have a tendency to follow a person back from whom they've gotten a request to follow; you can cash in on this customer audience that is searching for your product.

Remember that Twitter is a social site; interesting conversation is the basis for participation.

You don't want to appear desperate; get customers engaged in lively conversations about what you have to offer.

Don't be so aggressive that you drive them away with a sales pitch.

You must be courteous, polite, and careful when trying to market your product to someone you don't know very well. Establishing a conversational relationship in the beginning will work much better than approaching followers with a high-pressure sales pitch that loses them immediately.

Online business is very similar to traditional business: nobody like a high-pressure salesman!  Take your time and cultivate loyal customers who will tell their friends and spread a good positive message about your product.

You may not be able to use the proverbial handshake but a good solid comment about your product will be just as worthwhile.

Tweet often to your followers. Out of sight, out of mind is an adage that is very representative of Twitter.

Tweets have a short life and if you're not tweeting, the customers as not seeing you.

If you tweet often, your customers will know that your business is alive and well and that you are still offering the same quality product and services. Tweet at least once a day; research shows that less than 10% of Twitter followers go back to look at what was Tweeted yesterday.

If you aren't present on a regular basis, you'll lose their attention. Be a constant presence on Twitter.

Twitter's version of the viral marketing strategy is retweeting!

You will add tremendous value and promote ongoing conversations as retweets spread across Twitter. You will also attract thousands of new clients with retweets; your viral marketing campaign will be off and running.

This tidal wave of information and exposure will be a dynamic force in generating business and profits for your product.  One of the most effective ways to get more retweets is to post tweets that discuss "how to" topics.

Everyone enjoys learning how to do projects and by sharing this type of information, you can develop a large retweeting campaign.

In this downturned economy, people are attempting do-it-yourself projects and you can provide the knowledge that they need to complete their work in a cost-efficient and timely way.

Be sure to include links to your website that can give additional information about the topic and any related product that you are offering.

This will increase your profits as you share the knowledge you have attained.

Research shows that conducting polls on Twitter where you offer some excellent prizes for the participants will drive traffic and business to your Twitter page. Everybody loves something that is free and you can attract large numbers of followers and their followers that will expand your potential customer base.

This is a simple idea that can work to build a list for you to use in other campaigns for your marketing strategies.

Another strategy to implement is that of linking all of your social networking accounts with Twitter.

With the user base accompanying all of these social sites, your marketing campaign will be more solid and effective in its approach.

You must leave no stone in cyberspace unturned.

With the amount of daily usage coupled with a constant connection to these social media sites with smart phones, your advertising dollars will reap rewards that you never dreamed were possible.

Your business will be open 24/7 in countries world-wide; the sun will never set on your thriving business.

Don't reinvent the wheel.

You can expand your knowledge of Twitter by reading success stories of others as you research the marketing possibilities with Twitter.

Learn different tips that assisted them as they began and what worked for them.

If it didn't work for them, mark it off of your to do list and move on to the next strategy.

Using the best practices of those who have gone before you makes your path easier and saves you valuable time and money.

Connect traditional marketing with your Twitter campaign.

You will need to inform every customer you have that you are now running a Twitter account.

Here they can find helpful information as well as any offers you extend to your customers.

Place your Twitter link on all business cards and on other traditional marketing tools.

This is a real-time method of keeping the customer updated on trends, products, and other helpful information.

The customer will view your business as cutting edge if you are using technology with which they are familiar to promote your business.

Once you become familiar with Twitter, participate in Twitter chats.

These are scheduled discussions that happen on a regular basis and are set up by a moderator. Each chat has a topic that is of interest to participants.

Sometimes a featured guest will appear to answer questions and contribute on a professional level to followers.  A valuable transcript of the chat will be provided at the end of the session.  Twitter chats will provide you with a perfect way to make new connections with people who have similar interests as you.

You can identify potential clients and connect with them as an authority on the topic; this will develop trust and confidence in you and the product which you offer to them.

You'll be noticed more by followers and expand your follower list which can generate more business. This definitely establishes the expertise that you have in this field.

Followers who engage in these regular chats are already highly involved in the particular niche.  They can be a wealth of information and provide you with additional links, tips, and resources for your business.

This will provide a way for your potential customer to see a cyber face behind a product which will increase leads and contacts.

One of the largest opportunities that you will have on Twitter is to follow back.

You want users to follow you, but you can glean many customers from those users that YOU follow.  If you don't follow someone back, it can send the message that you are on Twitter only for sales and promotions.

This is a selfish message that will not get positive results; you will build no loyalty with a one-sided following.

Following back is a potential signal of caring and consideration which should not be forgotten in the marketing plan.

Use the @mentions feature of Twitter that will help you to build stronger relationships and attract a more targeted audience's attention.

This tool directs the tweet to a specific user and operates as more of a one-on-one approach.

Your goal is not to sell them a product immediately; it is a call to action that engages them without the pressure associated with a sales pitch.

You are creating a relationship that can elicit a sale after the relationship is established.

With time and patience, these relationships will grow and they will be more likely to reply, retweet and engage with you.

Real business opportunities grow from real relationships; that is a powerful tool to keep in mind as you establish your Twitter marketing campaign

After engaging your audience on Twitter, you want to drive these users to your promotional or business website.  As your users develop more trust and confidence in you, they will begin to explore who you are in the marketplace and what your product can do for them.

Post enticing ads with shortened URLs that will direct them to your webpage.

If your information is relevant to them and interesting, they will look further into your product.

Another feature of Twitter that you can use as a tool in your marketing toolbox is Tweet swaps.

This resembles ad swaps where you advertise on another person's list and they advertise on your list.  Your Twitter followers are on your list to learn more about you, read about your discussions, and to keep updated with current trends in the niche they enjoy.

With Tweet swaps, you won't be making sales; you will just be developing ideas and driving traffic.

This will expand your exposure and can help you to build a loyal, long-term following that will make money for your business.  With Tweet swaps, you can access another's followers and capture them with your ideas and deals.

Find a Twitter partner who has a similar niche as you.

Your marketing strategies should be close but not necessarily the same.

Don't just look for someone who has a massive list of followers; you want quality over quantity or the followers will be of no use to you. The best idea is to offer a free product to these followers instead of trying to sell them a product immediately.  This tool is for generating leads and not promoting sales.

One of the most interesting ways to build up an extensive following on Twitter is to post questions on any topic but preferably one that you have a wealth of knowledge about.

You can provide answers to these questions in your discussions with your followers. This establishes you as an authority on the topic and it serves to build trust and reliability between you and your fans.

Starting dialog with others on a friendly but challenging topic will build a community of followers who listen to your tweets and respond with their own helpful ideas and thoughts.

This is a subtle way of promoting your product with the use of information that you have carefully gathered. Knowledge is power and you want the power of Twitter marketing to perform for you.

Although there is no right or wrong way to use Twitter in your marketing plan, you should abide by the unwritten rules that ensure you positive promotion and fabulous feedback as you interact with your followers.

Proper Twitter etiquette will go a long way in developing the loyal relationships that increase your sales and profit.

Develop a plan that includes the amount of time you will spend working on your Twitter account.

Many times it is easy to lose track of time and end up in the wee hours of the morning completing a discussion that you began with your followers.

Set an ample amount of time to publish your content and engage your followers on Twitter.

Adhere as close to your scheduled time as you can and make the most of any interaction in which you participate.

The rule of 80-20 in marketing applies in Twitter marketing as well as in traditional means of promotion.  If you are constantly talking about yourself or promoting your product, no one will want to discuss topics with you.

You can include tweets about topics closely related to your business, offer helpful information that will improves the lives of others, and interesting discussions that include a variety of issues.

Offer diverse tweets as you interact with your followers; don't over promote yourself or your business.

A business relationship is a two way street just as in other relationships.

You have to show an interest in your client to gain their trust and confidence before they will purchase a product from you.

Cross promote the marketing initiatives that you are using with your Twitter account.  Fully use every tool available to you on the web and integrate these so that they will work smoothly and efficiently for you.

Link your email and URLs with every tweet that you make so that it will be easier for a follower to contact you outside the Twitter community.

Be very careful with the content of your tweets.

If you're using your Twitter account as a marketing strategy, you want the public to see everything that you tweet.

You have no idea where these tweets will shared so avoid negativity or heated discussions.

Don't say anything on your Twitter account that you would not say in public.

Keep from becoming too personal or familiar with your clients so that no mixed message can be perceived.

Always keep your language professional, honorable, and respectful.  Off-color jokes and innuendos are not acceptable.

Put the interest of others before your own interests.

Your Twitter marketing account is not all about you; it's an opportunity to build a quality relationship that will bring business and profits to your company in the future.  Take time to listen to others, respect them and their ideas, and share content rather than forcing your views and ideas on them.  Be interested and be cordial.

One of the rudest things you can do in your tweets is to use corporate terminology or jargon that people may not know or understand.

You don't want to appear arrogant with your audience interaction.

Don't use rhetoric that is industry-specific; that confuses your audience.

You have a brief time to capture their interest and attention; don't use words that they have to look up or ask you to define for them.

You don't want to appear as a corporate robot whose aim is to sell a product and move forward to the next client.

Try to speak successfully and with confidence as you interact with your potential customers.

Don't be condescending or patronizing toward them; they will not have a positive response to you and will move toward a more user-friendly person with whom to interact.

One of the most interesting marketing tools today is with Twitter.

It is a real-time stream of current trends, information, and interaction that can capture an audience quickly and move them to purchase the product that you are offering to them.  With a solid plan and method of execution for your company, you can tap into the power of Twitter marketing immediately.  As you plan your marketing strategy, include this cutting edge technology that is exploding in the marketplace today!

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How To Track Trends With Twitter Tools

Twitter has become the go-to place to learn what is trending, an important consideration for any business. If you want to stay ahead of the competition, you need to know what people are thinking and talking about. Find out more about trending topics at trending topics. Here are seven Twitter tools to help users interested in tracking trends that interest them.

ReTweetist provides a list of recent retweets. This tool operates on the premise that trends can be determined by gauging the number of retweets a tweet receives. This is said to give a reliable indication of how popular Tweeters, and their tweets, really are. This application also indicates which terms are the most popular in on social media sites.

Retweet Radar sifts through the rivers of information streaming from Twitter and provides lists of the most popular people, links, and trending topics. The website has archives of previous trends, so you can look back to see what has been trending recently and what was a flash in the pan. You can follow @retweetradar to get hourly updates on the hottest trends.

Twitterfall offers custom searches as well as providing current hot keywords to view. Tweets cascade from the top of the page, and eventually are buried under the weight of new messages. The queue can be refreshed, paused, or cleared. This application provides highly customizable searches of Twitter, including location and exclusions. This allows you to stay on top of the curve.

WhatTheTrend allows you to narrow down your search with international listings. Definitions of trends are provided by contributors, so you can see exactly what is popular and why. Results are listed by hashtag. The premium version enables you to set time parameters to compare tracking trends over a period of time, as well as offering reports and in-depth analysis of current trending topics.

Topsy lets you determine what is popular. It is a real-time search engine that can filter mentions by Twitter, photos, experts, or search the entire web. Topsy is a great research tool available in a number of languages. This powerful application gives you access to the mountains of information on the web in a whole new way.

Trendsmap floats a tag cloud of what's popular over a map of the United States. You can zero in on your location by city or region, or by your actual location if you enable that feature. Click on any tag to get a stream of tweets on that subject. There is a list of breaking trends, or you can check out trends by country or city. Trendsmap allows you to see trends in your target market area.

TrendingPeeps identifies the popular people on your timeline; using the number of mentions by people you follow to pinpoint popularity. There is also a Facebook plug-in, allowing you to determine the trending people there. This can be a fun application and can also indicate who you want to keep in your sights.

With the prevalence of social media sites nowadays, you really want to stay abreast of what's cool and what is just yesterday's news. Listed above are some of our favorite Twitter tools to use - what tools do you use to stay on top of Twitter trends? Tell us your favorites in the "Comments" section below.

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Twitter Can Quickly Drive Targeted Traffic to Your Business If You Are Tweeting Properly

Everyone's talking and tweeting about Twitter. But, sadly, most tweets are either meaningless drivel or they are useful information that gets ignored or not noticed by the intended audience. This article explains how to make sure your little 140-character bursts get noticed, passed around among friends and associates within your target market, and ultimately how a consistent regiment of tweets can grow your customer base virally. Most small business owners and online marketers are just blasting random tweets out there with affiliate links in them and hoping to make a few bucks. However, like most endeavors, by thinking through it a little more than the average person, you can massively improve your results.

The ideal tweet is one that gets immediately re-tweeted (forwarded) around among your exact target market like wildfire. This is only going to happen once in a while, but when it does, it's powerful. In this kind of dream "tweet" scenario, you might get 200 people added to your list, rather than just an average of 2-5. You need to consciously shoot for this result every time you send a tweet, so that you increase your chances of it happening. Most of your tweets will fall short of this ideal result, but as they say on those ever-present motivational posters, "Aim for the stars, and you'll land on the moon".

The goal is just to grow your following and your attention level online, and with a consistent routine of tweets in the same niche, you can do this without a ton of time or effort. If you are sending one tweet per day for 30 days, you could expect to add let's say 200 people to your email list (if you're directing people to a squeeze page) or 200 people to become your follower on Twitter. If you're not getting this result, you are probably missing something important, like your tweets are all over the place topic-wise, or your links aren't working, or your market is simply not on Twitter, etc. For example, if you are selling medical lift chairs to people that are in the age group 80-100, you are going to have a lot tougher time on Twitter than if you are selling an iPhone app that helps college students tweet faster!

Here are the most important things you need to know to make sure your tweets are actually noticed and re-tweeted by people in your target market, which is what will lead to sales online:

1. Make sure your tweets are consistently incorporating keywords that are used in your niche; and make sure your niche is a tight, narrow niche. For example, your niche should be "Florida-friendly gardening for women", not "gardening".

2. Don't have all of your tweets be "commercial" in nature. That is to say, don't put shortened affiliate links or sales pitches in most of your tweets. Only be commercial in about 20% of your tweets. The majority (80%) of your communications should be helpful or entertaining information that is about your tight niche topic.

3. Write your own, original tweets. I can't stress this enough! Most people are tweeting quotes by famous people. That is a ridiculous and lazy strategy. Just take the 1 minute and think up something in your own words. It doesn't need to be an original idea or concept, it just needs to be in your own words. That makes it original. IMPORTANT - that is also Google's definition of "original", and original content gets ranked much higher than a bunch of re-hashed quotes by famous dead people!

Here are some examples of original tweets, just off the top of my head, again using this Florida gardening topic example:

"Don't forget to water your in-ground plants twice as often as your potted plants"
"The spring is a great time to buy XYZ type plants"
"Miracle-Gro is the professional's choice for plant food"

Not exactly ground-breaking stuff, right? Seriously, anyone can do it!

4. Don't tweet too often, and don't tweet too little. Specifically, if you tweet too often, people will stop reading your tweets as soon as they see your username come up at the beginning of the tweet. You don't want that of course! If you tweet too little, people will forget who you are, and then will never look at your tweets or they will un-follow you on Twitter because they figure you're irrelevant if you never tweet anything. So, you should be tweeting anywhere from every other day to twice per day. That's the range: 0.5 tweets per day to 2.0 tweets per day.

5. Switch up your times of day for tweeting. This is because people check twitter at different times of day depending on their jobs, children, lifestyle, etc. You don't need a special system to vary your tweet times, just don't track it and by nature you will tweet sometimes in morning, afternoon, and evening. That's great, nothing more complicated than that is needed.

6. If you're including a link to an affiliate product you're selling, or to your blog, or whatever, use a "link shortening service" like or bud url. These services will allow you to track where clicks are coming from as well. You don't want to burn up a bunch of your 140 characters on a URL unnecessarily. Plus, when people see a long affiliate type link they rarely click on it because it looks like a commercial site or a spam/virus type site not an informational site. People want to be entertained or informed on the internet, they don't actually want to be "sold" anything, unless they're ready to buy! Don't you feel the same way? I sure do.

Okay folks, that's what you need to know to use Twitter for more than just blasting little bits of chatter and drivel around the universe. This is one of the few strategies that really is fast and easy to implement. Video marketing, article marketing, blogs, etc. all take many hours to really get up and running, but you can start getting some traction with Twitter in just days or weeks of spending about 15 minutes a day. So have fun with it and don't work too hard. May the little blue bird of Twitter bring you many targeted, happy customers that re-tweet your tips and information to even more customers!

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Twitter Demystified For Business Users

Twitter is the current top "hot property" on the Web, but its popularity and how to use it has mystified many business owners. Many people think that they want to, or should be using Twitter, but simply do not understand the platform, its use, or its place in building web exposure. This article will demystify Twitter and help you to learn how to use it in the workplace and to promote your business.

First, I have to say that I had been confused on how to use Twitter to benefit my own business until I downloaded TweetDeck. TweetDeck is a desktop application that allows you to review and post status updates on Twitter and Facebook simultaneously. I consider it a "must have" application for anyone who wants to make sense of Twitter. TweetDeck allows you to sort the people you follow on Twitter into groups, allows you to limit the number of Tweets (Twitter micro posts) to be shown at any one time, and also allows you to remove all Tweets you have seen with one click. Additionally, using TweetDeck, finally a Twitter search on a topic makes sense.

Since using TweetDeck, I have had a much better Twitter experience. As a Twitter newbie, visiting your own Twitter home page is intimidating; it consists of post after post from people who you are following, who you may not know much about, and it just seems like a huge volume of content. To get started effectively first group the people who actually have something interesting to say on TweetDeck and voila, you have a powerful tool that keeps you at the forefront of what is happening in your industry and on the Web.

So how do you get started with Twitter? Well the first thing is to start on Twitter yourself to understand what you like to read, who you like to follow, and to clearly identify what you like about Twitter. For me, it boils down to this: I like to follow people in my industry who say something of value, who provide a link to a new application or point me to an interesting new article, video, or blog site that I should review but may have never have found myself. Based on what I like, and the people who I find interesting to read, I now write my Twitter posts using this same formula to grow my own Twitter audience.

What I also like about Twitter is that the people who I follow also know how to show their true personality in their Tweets. Ye,s I do like to know what Danny Sullivan (famous search engine marketing guru) ate for lunch, but better yet is the link to the video he thought was funny. I love following Ashton Kutcher (movie star married to Demi Moore who just hit 1 million Twitter followers in April). Man, that guy is really funny and is having a ball with Twitter. His posts are great and he has just earned the status of the user with the most followers. This is why you can't hire someone to "Ghost Twitter" for you. It's about showing the real you - you can't fake that!

So how can you use Twitter for business? Twitter is an excellent tool for linking and this is the real value for businesses. By using Twitter to point people to content on your website, articles you have written either on or off your website, or by linking to a service you want to highlight, you drive traffic. On top of that, Google actually indexes Twitter and so your Twitter page can appear in the organic search results so make sure your bio is well thought out. Don't waste time using Twitter to point to blog posts, use TwitterFeed to post your blog posts directly onto Twitter. If you have a blog or website, you'll get new Twitter followers by posting your TwitterFeed right onto your web pages. People who may not have known your Twitter ID can simply click the bottom "follow me link" and start following you on Twitter.

What's important to be successful in using Twitter is to identify what you personally like about this new media and then deliver the same type of things that you like back to your own followers - work to provide value not drivel! So you've got to play with Twitter and learn how to use it first before you can really become successful with it for your business.

So how do you get followers? Well, I started by following everyone (who I found by doing a Twitter search) who had the last name McCord. Then I searched for web design, search engine optimization, and pay per click. Any site profile that looked good, I clicked to follow the writer. It was that easy. Many times people who you follow yourself will choose to follow you. That's how you initially build up your Twitter base. Over time you will start to identify your "Twitter voice" and refine the type of Twitter presence you want to have by changing your content style and the things that you Tweet about. As you refine your presence, you will build a following.

Another cool Twitter use is that you can reply to any of your followers by simply putting an @ in front of their Twitter ID. For example to send something to my attention use @mccordweb at the very front of your Twitter posting and click enter. Just remember that this post is seen by all followers on my site and on your Twitter site. If you need a more private exchange, go to the direct message link on the site and select a follower by Twitter ID name and send your message from there. This note will be private. If you are using TweetDeck you can click on a follower's Twitter ID icon and then select to send a direct message or @reply to them. TweetDeck will automatically insert the correct syntax for you in the Tweet.

For many businesses the ability for users to communicate with top management using Twitter is an invaluable resource. This one-to-one exchange allows a company principal to keep tabs on customer viewpoints, concerns, and interests. As a Twitter reply or direct mail does not use email and does not require a response, this is a great way to tap into social networking to test new ideas and to ask for user feedback. For example, if you have a new software product ask your Twitter followers for feedback on a specific feature, or provide a link to your beta version for their testing.

How you use Twitter is all about your personal business needs. The best advice that I can offer to you is that you need to use Twitter a bit yourself first to understand the medium and to find out what you like to read best using Twitter. Then, create your own Twitter network sharing information that you find interesting and have some fun.

Currently I am following 204 people and 183 people are following me on Twitter. Personally I find Twitter great fun and a very cool way to find out first what's happening in the world before you see it on TV, read it on the Web, or see it in the newspaper. That's the real power of Twitter; you share, you find out, and you know, all by a person-to-person exchange of information.

For those of you clicking in from my e-newsletter the rest of the content on Twitter applications and uses follows.

Below are some of the Twitter applications that I like and use regularly for my business.

Twuffer - I love this one, it is a Twitter post scheduler. Some people feel that Twuffer defeats the immediacy of Twitter posts or Tweets, but I like it as I will schedule Tweets on days that I am not blogging to keep my followers advised of things I find important. It is easy to use, allows you to Tweet ahead, and lets you select a posting schedule by day and time. If you are pushing content on a service or product this is an excellent tool to use. Set your Tweets up one week or one month at a time and feed your content to readers in addition to your regular Tweets. Make sure to use to change any long URLs you point to in the Tweet to a Twitter-friendly short version to save space.

Twitter Feed - This is another one of my top favorites. TwitterFeed allows me to show my blog posts from "The Web Authority" directly onto Twitter. It also allows me to post my Tweets back on my blog (by installing a widget) in my blog template - very cool cross interaction! I pick up many Twitter followers with this technique. Readers come to visit my blog and then choose to follow me on Twitter.

Twitter Grader - This one is a vanity application that allows you to see where you stack up against other Twitter users. Twitter Grader measures the power of a Twitter user based on followers, number of updates, and posting frequency.

TweetBeep - With this application, you can manage your online Twitter reputation. Alerts will be emailed to you whenever a Twitter user Tweets about your business, name, or domain. You select the alert criteria and what to watch for using TweetBeep. This is great for a business that is concerned about branding and online identity. PR professionals should make sure to use this tool to watch for comments about their clients.

Twitoria - Clean up your Twitter followers by finding out which people never use Twitter or post infrequently so you can delete them right from the Twitoria interface.

Qwitter - If you want to know when someone stops following you, sign up for this service. Actually, this can be an excellent tool to find out what a reader hated that you posted about and caused them to "chop" you, so you can fine tune your message. If you get a flood of drops after a Tweet, it allows you to learn that people don't like a certain type of Tweet - instant feedback at an anonymous level!

One big thing about Twitter that I have not even mentioned yet but is actually one of Twitter's best features is the ability to text-in Tweets from your mobile phone. Although you can't easily link to great content typically on the fly like this, the ability to connect with others without being tethered to a computer is an opportunity to show the "real you". Maybe your followers do want to know what you are eating for lunch or about a seminar you just attended, just be kind and don't vomit out Twitter spam using your Blackberry on meaningless drivel.

You can easily set up the ability to receive text messages from your Twitter account to your cell or Blackberry, but be careful as you may be inundated if you have a large following. I would recommend receiving Twitter updates via text message to your cell only from a small group. For example if you have a project team, set up a Twitter account for each member to allow them to post just to this small unique circle of team members. The value to track and interact with each other at anytime and anywhere using Twitter by computer or by cell phone adds real value for work groups and teams - particularly team managers. Twitter even allows you to make this type of group private.

Another feature of Twitter is the ability to add hashtags in front of keywords in your Tweets to help with sorting to allow others to find your important content. For example if you wanted to Tweet about a recent earthquake in LA you would use #laearthquake in the front of your Tweet. By using hashtags you enable Twitter to return your information for topic searches on newsworthy Tweets. You can visit for more information on the current hot hashtags that are in use for today so you can follow, add to the topic, or create your own. For example in Twitter World, Fridays are the day you post with #followfriday and enter in the Twitter IDs you want to recommend to others. You would be amazed at the cool new people you can follow and interact with from recommendations of the people you follow.

In conclusion, Twitter is one of the hottest new mediums to arrive on the Internet scene since Facebook. Although it is not exactly "new", Twitter has just recently become very high profile. If you are in business, Twitter definitely warrants your attention. Not only is it a very smart new tool to use in your marketing arsenal, but I think that the more you use it you will grow to love it and find it fun to use. The ways that you can use Twitter are endless: for teams, for family members, for business networking, to stay at the forefront of news, to promote yourself and your services, and to just have fun connecting with others online. Just remember you can't really make sense of Twitter for business without using TweetDeck or another similar aggregating and sorting application. Thanks for reading,

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