If you and your company aren’t on Twitter yet, then you’re making one of the biggest mistakes you can possibly make for your company. Twitter is where everyone is, and everyone’s talking – and so should your company. By not doing so, your company is cutting off a significant source of potential traffic.
There are a number of reasons why Twitter can help enhance your business, and I’ll start with perhaps the most obvious, but often overlooked point:
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Twitter for Customer Service
Think about it: do you have any other tools at your disposal that allow customers and leads to contact you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and that allows you to give them a quick, personalized response? Twitter is becoming more popular than phone and email customer support, and definitely is proving to be a better investment for companies than live chat.
I understand why some businesses are wary about using Twitter for customer support reasons. If anyone has a concern or a complaint, it’s right there in front of everyone’s face to see. Remind yourself that no matter WHAT business you’re in, people are going to have questions. They’re going to complain. It’s how you handle those complaints that will make your business a winner. Here are some quick tips on how you can deal with any complaints that you receive:
- Reply like a human being would. This is your time to show your personal side.
- Be respectful and mindful of their feelings, no matter how inflammatory their statement may be.
- Don’t get stuck in an apology loop! Saying “I’m sorry” once is fine, but then focus on helping solve the problem. What can you do to improve their experience now? What can you do to help improve their experience in the future?
Twitter for Promotion
Now let’s talk about what the main purpose of your Twitter is for: to get people to visit your website and check out your products and services. This isn’t as easy as you might think, however. What I’ve seen so many businesses do is start up a Twitter account, and then spend almost every second of their time on Twitter talking about THEMSELVES. Their products, their services, promotions… while it’s important that you promote your company and the stuff you have to sell, it’s also important that you back off from that and talk about non-business things too.
For example, if you’ve read a great article that’s related to your niche, why not shoot out a quick post about that? Or if you’ve found a funny (but TASTEFUL) picture on the internet and want to share it – why not post a URL to that too? People will get bored of your constant promoting and pushing, but if you mix in different media and more personal and fun messages, then they’ll continue to “Follow” you and read your updates.
Twitter can be overwhelming. Before you feel as if you’re in over your head, here are some business tips to help you keep your sanity:
- You don’t have to read every single tweet. If you do, you’ll never get any sleep. Scan and try to find the ones that are relevant to you and your business.
- You don’t have to reply to every tweet – though try your best. When you first get started on Twitter you may not have too many replies, but trust me. Once you get going, you’ll have people tweeting at you day and night. Reply only to those that you feel requires a comment (i.e. a question). It may be a good idea to set up an FAQ page on your website that you can direct people with questions to.
- Use direct messaging. If you feel that a conversation should be taken off of a public forum and go one-on-one, go for it.
- Make use of tools like Twitter Search. It’ll help you “spy” and listen in on any conversations about you.
Twitter, like any social media tool, is a bit tricky for businesses at first. On the one hand, you suddenly have access to hundreds of millions of people and want to get the message about your brand out there. On the other hand, you don’t want to bore the socks off of them so that they’ll “unfollow” you. Take an 80/20 approach: promote 80% of the time, and mix in fun things 20% of the time. When you promote, make sure that your messages are fun, engaging and attention-grabbing too.
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