Twitter is all the rage these days although I think there is far more hype than there is substance to it all. When you look at the raw numbers, Twitter is a long way down the list of ‘most visited’ sites. That doesn’t mean it’s not useful when it comes to social marketing. What you should bear in mind is that sites like Facebook still receive 7-8 times more visitors – so apportion your social marketing time appropriately.
If you are intent on using Twitter, the least you can do is learn to write an effective Tweet. Jennifer Horowitz has provided a good post on how to write Tweets and is worth a read. In short, writing a good marketing Tweet is no different than writing a short advertisement. Consider the following basic marketing tenets:
- Provide a hook – a reason to listen to you
- Provide a benefit – why I should act
- Be clear, concise and to the point
Add to these Twitter specific tenets:
- Keep below 140 characters (120-130 characters is best)
- Use a shortened URL
- Include a request for a re-Tweet (Plz RT)
Why 120-130 characters? It allows for the re-Tweet. If you use the full 140 characters then the re-Tweet is likely to cut off the end of your message. Otherwise, these are standard marketing approaches that happen to fit in very well with Twitter.
Twitter can be a very effective marketing tool, particularly for those running small to medium sized offline businesses. You can quickly announce price changes to undercut competitors or offer special limited time prices.
Social media marketing is one tool that web site owners will need to embrace this year. Many businesses are entering in to it – if you don’t, you could be left behind.