Twitter has been around for a while now, and there’s a ton of articles out there on how to use this platform to promote your business. It’s still a useful social media outlet, but since there are so many new networks, people are starting to ask why they should still use Twitter and not move on to other platforms. Instagram and Snapchat are getting bigger, and Facebook is still huge because of the ads. What do you need Twitter for?
You might be one of these people who are wondering whether or not to continue using Twitter, there’s no clear cut answer for you. It depends solely on your business and your audience. If you serve a younger audience that primarily uses Snapchat, sometimes Instagram, Facebook is a distant third for them, and Twitter is way back there, then you may need to reconsider using it. If you have time to do them all, you should probably try to have a presence on all of them. However, you need to concentrate more on whatever sandboxes your customers are playing in.
Let’s say that you are trying to reach out to a demographic that uses all of these platforms fairly equally. That means you’ll need to divide your time so that each is properly taken care of. After all, if one sliver of your pie is on Twitter, then you don’t want to neglect that portion of your audience. If you ignore one of the platforms, then you’re ignoring an entire chunk of your market, in other words. However, if you know that the majority of your audience is on Snapchat, then you need to make that platform a priority over the rest, but that’s not to say that you should necessarily neglect your other accounts.
If you decide that Twitter is a platform you need to utilize, then I recommend that you use its search function quite often. Furthermore, I would use the advanced search features to your advantage, and make sure that you’re listening and watching too. The worst thing that you could do, where Twitter is concerned, is just schedule posts to push out your message. You can’t treat this platform like television or radio by tweeting things like, “Make sure you come out tonight for half-price wings”.
You can’t just push out messages one after the other like that. People don’t really care about messages like that, and they ignore them. The truth is that unless it’s something extremely crazy to talk about and they are part of the conversation, you’re not going to get any interaction whatsoever. You might end up with one re-tweet. Make sure that you say things that are important and that appeal to your customers.
When you use the search function on Twitter, you can search for hashtags, people that are in a specific location, and things that people are saying. Best of all, you can even jump into a conversation. So, for example, if someone is saying, “I’m bored tonight. Where should we go?” If you can search for some of these terms, you could be one of the brands that jump into these types of conversations. This is an opportunity to say something to the effect of, “Why not join us here, and since we had this conversation, we’ll let you guys all in for free.” This is just one example, of course.
The point is that if you’re listening to people instead of just pushing out your message, then you will be able to accommodate people’s questions. Someone might even ask you a question, like, “Hey, what’s the cover charge tonight” or “What’s the reservations like right now”. You should be ready to respond. That way, you can nurture these relationships very quickly and get them to come in and spend some money.
Twitter is a very good listening device, and the power happens when you are able to respond to your market. Don’t you think that if you are an owner of a bar in Los Angeles, you would want to be in the conversation with people that are searching for with the hashtags “Los Angeles” and “Party”? Of course you would. This gives you the ability to make some headway with your customers, one person at a time.
You have to realize that social media marketing requires a lot of work at times. It’s not the same as it used to be, when you could just blast a message out and everyone will come running. You’ll need to work at staying on top of your market and figure out what the best ways to reach them are. Also, when you reach out to people, make sure that you chill out and act normal. You don’t need to respond to people’s questions with a big cut-and-paste sales letter. Not only does Twitter only allow 140-character messages at one time, but people aren’t going to want to interact with you or even pay attention to what you have to say because they will know that you’re just there to sell them something.
Get into these conversations like a regular person. Have a voice for your bar, have a voice for your brand, and have a voice for your nightclub, and make sure that you respond accordingly. Every brand that I work with has a specific teak on whom they are if they were a real person, and that’s the same way I would respond to people who are asking questions. That’s how you want to communicate with people on Twitter, for the most part, and always remember that you need to listen first, before you answer. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t ever just put out a message. You can, but maybe 1 or 2 times out of every 10 times you post something.
Balance all this out properly by listening a lot and getting into the conversation. After all, you wouldn’t walk into a room full of people you wanted to network with and automatically just start handing out business cards then walk away. People are going to think, “What the hell was that?” Then, they are going to chunk your card into the garbage. What you want to do is walk in and shake hands with someone, and they might introduce you to someone else, and so forth.
That’s a real world example, but it’s almost the same as how you begin to interact with people on Twitter. You don’t want to just blast your messages out like you don’t care what people have to say and like you just expect them to read what you have to say and start bringing bags of money to your bar. That’s not going to happen. So, converse with people and get to know them. Let them know who you are and what your business is about too, but don’t make it all about you.
That brings up another point. You have to be careful not to misrepresent your brand on social media sites like Twitter. You need to have a solid, consistent voice. That means that your messaging needs to stay the same across all of the different platforms you are on. You know, people answer things in different ways. One of your staff members might answer with a cheeky, fun sense of humor while another may come across a little harsh. You’ll want to make sure that you have one person in charge of your social media or make sure everyone knows what your brand represents and how to go about portraying that correctly in their messages and posts.
Maybe you have the type of business that likes to give their customers a hard time. There are a couple of restaurant brands in my area that do that, and the customers love it. They have fun with it. I’ve also seen businesses that are very fun-loving, and they often respond to their customers with sarcastic remarks. Their customers seem to enjoy this as well. You don’t have to keep your messages dry and boring, but you need to stay consistent with what your brand is supposed to represent. Whatever the “attitude” or “persona” of your brand represents, it needs to come across in the same way on the various social media platforms that you’re using.
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