How To Use Twitter For Business

5 Do's & 1 Don't

I was quoted in a US News & World Report article by Robin Madell titled 10 Ways Twitter Can Help (Or Hurt) Your Business.  It's a great read with a lot of expert advice for how to use Twitter for business.

I use the e-Strategy account (@e_Strategy) to share useful and education digital articles that marketers in general and prospective clients in particular would find interesting and helpful. I also advise and coach clients on using Twitter as an expert positioning/thought leadership and media relations tool.

How To Use Twitter For Business

Here are some of my notes that didn't make it in the US News & World Report article.

1. Harness Your Subject Matter Experts

Most businesses have some employees who follow the trends in their industry. Using those people to share links on Twitter to the articles they read about industry trends can help establish that person as a credible, authoritative source for both likely customers and media while also contributing to your company or brand Twitter account

This is typically more applicable in a B2B setting.

2. Use Twitter Tools

Screenshot: Twitter Advanced Search

Using Twitter's advanced search function and tools like FollowerWonk, you can often find likely decision makers for prospective customers.

Following them and providing content they value can build the foundation for a relationship that can lead to online conversations and, eventually, to new business.

The key is establishing credibility and trust.

3. Favoriting Is Your Friend

Using Twitter's Favorite feature is often a way to acknowledge someone when a direct conversation or reply is unwarranted or unneeded.

4. Retweet To Build Relationships

Retweeting content from those with whom you want to build a business relationship is a great way to get their attention and curry a bit of favor from them.

Just be sure that the content you're retweeting is relevant to your own Twitter followers.

5. Twitter Is For Business AND Pleasure

Twitter works best when it's a combination of professional and personal.

People will follow you for business purposes based on the value you provide them as a source of professional information and insight but when it comes to doing business with you, they want to know what kind of person you are as well.

Sharing your personality and what you're like outside of your professional persona helps engender that trust. Just be smart about it.

6. Don't DM Strangers

Avoid Direct Messaging someone unsolicited.

Use your content and public conversations on Twitter to establish a relationship and only after you have that foundation built should you use the Direct Messaging feature, unless, of course, someone has asked you to DM them.