Simple Twitter tips for startups - Business Works
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Simple Twitter tips for startups

Hugo Sumner, Punch Communications Entering the world of social media can be quite daunting for some start-ups, as just getting the business off the ground can be time consuming enough. However, using Twitter neednt be a hassle; following some very simple rules can help to make your new account a success.

First things first, you need to make your profile look good. There are some great examples out there of businesses that have made the most out of their profile picture and header photo, which can go a long way to making you stand out from the crowd. Dont be afraid to be creative with these, so if you know any aspiring graphic designers, get them on the case!

Dont forget the little things as well, include your website address as well as a well thought out biography giving people good reasons to follow your account. Let them know who you are and what you do, which should give an indication about the sort of content youll be tweeting about. Finding your niche is important, people need to know what theyll be getting if they follow your account.

Next up is the content. Once youve set up your stall you need to go about making your account a worthwhile follow. Being different and standing out is what the best Twitter profiles strive to do, with originality playing a large part in this ethos. Tweeting about the same thing as everyone else will only serve to drive followers away, as therell be nothing to distinguish you from others. An important part of this will be sharing stories from your industry that people following you will find interesting. Put your own spin on them and use hashtags ['key words' that have a # in front of them eg. #twitter to make them more 'searchable'] where necessary. Get involved in the conversation, as this can play a large part in increasing exposure to the rest of the Twittersphere.

As well as using hashtags to track and stimulate engagement, asking questions and including calls to action in posts is important if you want to interact with your followers. Whether youre asking their thoughts on a news story or crowdsourcing an idea, follower acquisition is closely linked to follower engagement. This works both ways however, so not only do you want your fans to be interacting with you, you also need to make the effort to interact with them. By this I mean be thankful if you get a retweet or compliment and be quick when responding. If you can do so within a short period of time, you can increase the goodwill amongst your followers which can help to increase engagement as well as brand advocacy amongst stakeholders in the future.

Once youve got your creative new profile design and engaging new content, youll need a way to measure the impact of your activities. There are a number of tools out there which you can use to track your tweets, or the activity around hashtags and followers. Tweetdeck, Social Bakers and SocialBro are just a few of the many options open to you. While not something to think about immediately, as your account grows and becomes more active, using an analytics tool is an important step in continuing any potential growth.

There is huge potential in Twitter and it can really add value to your business if executed correctly. Show your human side and make sure you tweet creative and innovative content which your followers can engage with. After all, social media is a conversation, not a notice board.

Hugo Sumner works at Punch Communications - for more information, please visit:

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