If you’re riding the metro and the person next to you tells you they’re busy tweeting, don’t panic! You don’t have to switch seats or plug your nose!
When you send a message on Twitter, it’s known as “tweeting.” If you’re familiar with Facebook, tweeting would be similar to updating your status; in fact, many would argue that Facebook has actually been copying Twitter with all of its recent updates.
So, what is Twitter and why should you care about it?
Twitter is a “micro-blogging” platform with over 5 million users – including the likes of Obama, Brad Pitt and even MC Hammer! Twitter allows you to tweet up to 140 characters. You can “follow” someone else and be alerted each time they tweet and vice versa. Someone can see your tweets even if they aren’t following you by doing a search for a particular subject.
At present, I see three really cool features for business owners on Twitter:
1. You can ask for, receive and offer advice in near real time. Suppose you are considering a new advertising channel. You might tweet – “Yellow Page advertising in the DC area for a plumbing company – is it still worth the price?” I’ve done this for a variety of different questions and have received almost instantanous answers and many quite insightful.
2) People that tweet a lot and tweet about subjects that others find interesting, tend to get a lot of people following them. Once you build up a following of a couple thousand people, Twitter becomes an instant soap box from which to pitch new products, events, promotions, etc.
3) You can use it for prospecting and to monitor your company’s online reputation – again, in near real time. You can set an alert for your company name so that you’ll get a notification anytime a conversation starts about your business. Think of the possibilities with that! If you do a search for “wind power”, you can quickly see thousands of conversations about wind power in the DC area and if that’s your product or service, you can subtly join the conversation and try to “create some new customers!”
If you’re a small business owner and you’d like help getting set up on Twitter as well as more tips on how to use it, please don’t hesitate to contact us: drop us a line.
About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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