Twitter seems frivolous to some, and in some markets, it isn't a compelling platform for small-to-medium businesses. But if your business is nationwide, looking to expand in various cities or multi-location, Twitter is an excellent network and outlet for your business to show personality. Here are three Twitter strategies for small-to-medium businesses that can grow your bottom line:
1. CUSTOMER SUPPORT
Most millennials think (know?) filling out a random inquiry on a website, especially when it's going to an email@example.com email address could lead to a dead-end or weeks of waiting. However, most also know that if a company has a Twitter handle, it's likely that they'll respond quicker. In fact, a majority of consumers expect that when they tweet a company, they'll hear back something in the same business day (with most Millennials saying they expect a response within an hour). It's a compelling reason to create a strong Customer Support strategy for the platform. There are not only alerts you can set, but saved settings to hunt for your brand terms (when people talk about you but aren't directly mentioning you). Try an aggregation platform like Hootsuite if you're always on your computer, or simply add your business's handle to your phone to receive notifications.
Not only will you be able to solve problems for people quickly (or at least get them into a helpful process), you'll be able to interact with brand loyalists one-on-one.
2. EVENT PROMOTION
If your company participates in a heavy amount of local, regional or national events, Twitter is the best place for promotion pre-event, during and afterward. If you're attending a trade show, promote your booth and what people can find there weeks beforehand. Are you giving away free swag? Share photos when the promotional products arrive in the mail to pique interest. If you'll have an activity or an exciting guest, promote that as well. During the event, be sure to follow the trade show hashtag and find out what people are saying (not only about you, by the way, but everything surrounding the event). Get involved in the conversation in a natural way; stay away from being too sales-driven.
This is also a great strategy for B2B companies to start and solidify their Twitter presence.
Beyond customer support and events, you should be utilizing Twitter as a tool for conversation, not just to post your Facebook, Instagram and blog posts that are already being published elsewhere. Instead of treating it as the bulletin board at the coffee shop, treat it like the community table. Pour yourself a latte and listen to the conversation happening. Do you have anything of value to add? Then do. If not, hang back and search for a new conversation that is relevant to your industry and business. Don't be afraid to have an opinion and personality. People appreciate when brands stand for something, as long as it's consistent and authentic.