More than 330 million people use Twitter every month, and more than 350,000 tweets are posted every single minute. There’s no doubt that potential clients and customers are there, and if they are, your business should be, too.
But beyond your potential clients and customers, there are others you should be looking for and paying attention to on Twitter, as well. It’s also a place where influencers, bloggers, and journalists are looking for fans, brands, and company stories. When they look for something in your industry or vertical, you want to make sure your business shows up.
Don’t forget about the passionate customers who go to Twitter to voice their concerns, complaints, and opinions. If conversations about your brand are taking place, you want to monitor them, participate, and steer them in the right direction. Social listening tools make it possible to keep an eye out for mentions of your business whether or not you’re tagged in the tweets.
The first step to succeeding at Twitter is creating the right kind of profile.
1. Pay Attention to Your Twitter Bio
You have 160 characters to wow your potential audience with. You need to use relevant keywords and hashtags. However, if you choose to use hashtags they will be clickable and may distract from your bio. If someone does click through to the hashtag make sure you’re not inadvertently driving them to your competition if you’re using an industry hashtag.
2. Include a Header Image
The Twitter profile header image can be likened to a magazine cover. You want to change it on a regular basis and use the space to showcase your brand. It’s much larger than your profile image – with the recommended size being 1500×1500 pixels, so you can do a lot more with it. No matter what you choose to do, however, make sure it coordinates with your profile image for better aesthetics.
You can use your header image to feature:
- New products
- Top-selling products and services
- Book launch
- A team photo
- Your store or office
- Your business at a trade show
- A special event
Regardless of the photo you choose, optimize all of your images by saving the image filename with branded keywords. This increases your chances of being found in an image search.
3. Carefully Select Your Profile Image
Your business or brand needs to use a version of its logo that is easy to recognize and represent your brand. If your logo features a lot of text or doesn’t show up well in the small square of your profile image, you may want to consider creating a secondary logo to use with Twitter and other social media profiles you.
As you determine whether or not you need to create a separate logo, you need to consider image size, color, and how it will look from a mobile device. the recommended file size is 400 by 400 pixels. Twitter supports JPEG, GIF, and PNG file formats up to 2 megabytes in size.
4. Drive People to Your Website
You can use the link space in your bio to drive people directly to your home page, but you can do more than that. Consider sending Twitter followers to some specific pages on your website instead of the basic homepage. Because Twitter is often used to store stories, You may wish to consider linking to your blog or company newsroom. As an alternative, you can point your followers to download a free ebook or checklist, subscribe to your email list, or sign up for a webinar.
5. Add a location to Your Profile
If you are a local business, make sure to fill out the location part of your Twitter profile. This allows Twitter’s algorithm to match your content with other locally-based audiences so your content gets in front of the right people. If you’re not a local business, you can still enter the location of your corporate office, or, you can opt to skip it altogether.
6. Make Sure You Have a Public Profile
Take a second to make sure your tweets are public. Within your settings, look at the privacy and safety section. Make sure the box next to tweet privacy is unchecked. If you do not have public tweets, your business or brand will not get discovered.
7. Pin a Tweet to Your Profile
If you equate your Twitter cover image to a magazine cover, the pinned tweet is your featured story. Pinning a tweet to the top of your profile is an option that many people tend to skip but it is valuable in terms of optimizing your profile. It gives you a space to showcase content.
Of course, this means thinking strategically when pinning tweets. Include a strong visual with a clear call-to-action and relevant keywords along with strategic hashtags and a link back to your website or blog for more detailed information.
New users landing on your profile will see the pinned tweet as the first thing in your Twitter stream, so you wanted to make a good impression. Like your cover image, you can change it up regularly to draw attention to whatever you need to promote.
8. Make it Easy for People to Direct Message You
To optimize your accessibility and make your brand more approachable on Twitter, remove the privacy from your direct messages. In the settings area, head to “Privacy and Safety.” Scroll down the page and look for the direct message option. Check “Receive Direct Messages from Anyone.”
Without this option checked, you and the person sending the DM have to follow one another. That can be difficult to manage if you’re trying to use Twitter as a customer service vehicle.
Taking these actions will make it much easier for you to build a Twitter following and engage with your audience there.