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4 Tips for Developing a Consistent Twitter Message

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4 Tips for Developing a Consistent Twitter Message

Published: July 26, 2011

<p>First off, let me assure you this isn&rsquo;t a judgmental post. I&rsquo;m not going to claim you&rsquo;re doing your social media outreach wrong or proclaim I&rsquo;m all knowing in all that is Twitter. What I&rsquo;d like to do here is just provide some food for thought and some best practices for representing and promoting your business on Twitter as inspired by an interaction I had with a recent aspiring entrepreneur. For the sake of this post we&rsquo;ll call him Ted.</p><p>Ted has an account on Twitter. Ted also has a new product he would like to promote using Twitter; a board game. The problem is Ted&rsquo;s Twitter account elements: the username, profile picture, profile bio and on-going posts and interactions aren&rsquo;t cohesive or consistent. It&rsquo;s confusing and hard to determine who the account is focused on, and who you are speaking with. The user name is the board game name, the profile picture represents the industry the game is based on, the bio highlights a charity the brand is supporting and the posts are personal conversations with followers that overshadow and outnumber his posts about his business and aren&rsquo;t related to the product at all.</p><p>Ted isn&rsquo;t a current client so I can&rsquo;t officially assess the effectiveness of his Twitter account. However, a quick scan of his Twitter timeline shows that he isn&rsquo;t providing information on his board game, asking for feedback from his followers, providing links to relevant information or having the conversations that could potentially result in the support, interest and sales that his business needs.&nbsp; However, consideration of and adhering to the following 5 tips for developing a consistent twitter message will put him and your business on the right path...</p><p><em><strong>1. Have a specific objective for being on Twitter:</strong></em><br />
What do you want from your Twitter followers? Do you want to make them aware of your product and or services, its benefits, and availability? Do you want to sell more products or win more customers? Or do you want feedback on new product / service enhancements? Identifying your primary objective will help you maintain focus and draft posts that target your desired outcome.</p><p><em><strong>2. Establish at least two Twitter accounts:</strong></em><br />
In my above scenario, Ted&rsquo;s major issue first and foremost is he is interacting personally using his board game&rsquo;s Twitter account . Ultimately, these personal interactions may bring Ted closer to his next dinner date, but aren&rsquo;t doing anything to increase the awareness or the sales of the board game. Avoid confusing your followers by creating at least two Twitter accounts; one for the business and one for you.</p><p>Make sure the business account branding is consistent. As in Ted&rsquo;s case the account name, profile image and bio should all consistently promote the brand or in this case the product. Research other businesses and <a href="http://twitter.com/#!/passgomonopoly"><u>competitors in your market</u></a>*, how are they branding and communicating with followers? How do the <a href="http://twitter.com/#!/HasbroNews"><u>large corporations</u></a>* represent their company on Twitter? Click the links for a couple of examples to get you started.</p><p>Use your personal account to share thoughts, have conversations, and connect with people on topics of interest separate from your business.</p><p><strong><em>3. Never send personal opinion or personal responses out via your Brand / Business account.</em></strong> Keep your business account focused on your identified objectives. If you want your brand / business to interact more with your customers then brand a Twitter account as the owner or employee representative of the business, i.e. @TedatGame (<a href="http://mashable.com/2009/06/24/twitter-brand-best-practices/"><u>see suggestion #3 via Mashable*).</u></a></p><p><strong><em>4. Keep brand posts exclusive to the Brand and Brand related content and media</em></strong>. All posts, images, video, and website links should relate to your business, product, service, industry and related customer / partner interactions.</p><p>What tips would you add for developing a consistent and cohesive message? Let&rsquo;s chat!</p><p><strong>About the author:&nbsp;</strong><br />
<em>Tonya Wilson is&nbsp;the Program Manager for the <a href="http://sbdcfreeadvice.ning.com/" target="_blank" title="Ohio SBDC @ Columbus State"><u>Ohio Small Business Development Center </u></a>at Columbus State Community College. You can also find Tonya on twitter at <a href="http://www.twitter.com/TonyaWilson" target="_blank" title="Twitter.com/TonyaWilson"><u>@TonyaWilson</u></a></em></p><p><em>*This hyperlink goes to a non-government website. &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p><p>&nbsp;&nbsp;</p>

About the Author:

Tonya Wilson
As a member of the Ohio SBDC at Columbus State, we provide entrepreneurial development assistance and business consulting to start-up, emerging, and existing business owners. In addition to one-on-on advising, we create, coordinate and promote programs and events to inspire, educate and engage individuals who wish to start or grow a small business.

Comments:

I have found finding quality twitter tips quite difficult, but this is a great article!
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We generally find Twitter to be helpful to focusing on new book publishing campaigns and related marketing pitches, but it only works if your main customers also have a tech background to use twitter effectively.
We really need to use separate accounts for personal and business use, just to have some boundaries and privacy.
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