This is Part 3 of a 3 part series on Twitter Strategy for Business.  Part 1 is here Part 2 is here

Previously I posted about twitter and business. In that article I discussed a businesses entrance to twitter. I then posted about the Trivium of Twitter Accounts.  Here I aim to show how to apply the trivium.

How often to post

Frequency of posting is an often asked question from businesses regarding twitter. Generally speaking people often come out of the gate stronger/faster than they can keep up with. So start slow, and find a groove. See if you can keep the momentum going before you increase your frequency. Here are some general guidelines specific to the trivium of twitter accounts:

  • Personal:
    • A couple times  a day to once a week
    • Whatever you would update on facebook could go here
    • This is for your friends and family and the world at large
  • Person Behind the Brand:
    • Two times a day to once a week. As often as needed for the brand
    • This depends on the goals of your social media campaign
  • Brand:
    • Much less frequently
    • Event sponsorships, coupons or links to news articles about your brand

What are your Goals for Twitter?

Courtesy booksnake @ flickr

Courtesy booksnake @ flickr

Consider your audience. Consider your ultimate goal: you are either trying to sell a product, a service or do the non-profit/government thing of offering a service for free/cheap.  Are you on twitter for customer support? What about increasing sales? Generating buzz about new products/services/degrees/etc. ? Every Tweet should be moving in a direction to support your twitter goals, which should support your social media goals.

You need to think strategically about your entire marketing, especially social media.

If your goal is to tell people how cool your city is and convince people to move their businesses to your city; your goal on twitter could be to highlight all the cool things and real estate and developments going on in your town. You could link to tweets about that. Similarly this account retweets good tweets/information from twitterers in the Houston area.

Perhaps you represent an educational institution.  Your goal is to increase applications and ultimately the number of students enrolled. Do prospective students know what makes your school stand out? Do they know you offer a program they care about? Are you educating them already: FASFA deadlines,  or how an MBA will help them, jobs, careers, other resources? Could you use twitter to position your institution as an authority in their area of interest?

What about development? Do you need to increase donor numbers and develop better forms of communication with your donors? What if your donor had a personal connection to your organization? They already care about what you do, could you make them passionate? Could they spread word about you because your equipped them with the right information? Perhaps they could become brand evangelists for you and spread your network to include their network.

There are many different goals, twitter is just a channel, a media to spread your story/message. So make your goals appropriate to that story/message. Decide if twitter is the channel for you. It will work for most brands, but will it return? Will it be beneficial?

Why should I be on Twitter? What’s the ROI?

courtesy cayusa @ flickr

courtesy cayusa @ flickr

The long and short of it. You need to be on twitter, just like you need a web presence. Eventually we will work our way into how it works best for your organization and what the ultimate ROI is. But the basics are this: There are Millions of potential clients/consumers on Twitter. Are they seeing your brand there? Do they hear you speaking into their lives?

There are users complaining about your brand, are you answering them? Are you in the arena where they are talking about you?

As a minimum, have a presence like Google did. They had their account for a while and only recently started tweeting. Who knows, perhaps Google will purchase Twitter.

Your ROI for twitter can be measured, but you need to setup realistic, measurable goals.

Comments are open. What are your questions? What did I miss? What do you want to know? This strategy is a work in progress and needs help. I need your help to know what it’s missing.