One of the perks of using Twitter is that you can interact with anyone, regardless of whether they follow you or not. There’s no distinction between personal profiles and business profiles, so you are not limited to using a page to interact with updates on other pages. This makes Twitter one of the best channels for engagement. Here are some ways to increase engagement with your business’s Twitter account to grow your audience and build your authority in your industry.
Stop Sharing Posts from Other Profiles
While we do find that some forms of social media automation are good for your business, the ones that involve your Twitter profile being nothing but re-posts of your Facebook and LinkedIn updates are not. When people see that a profile is 100 percent auto-updating from somewhere else, they will get the impression that the profile is not engaging. And this will lower your chance of growing followers on Twitter and engaging with them.
Put Your @Username to the Retweet Button
If you publish content, then you likely have a retweet button on that content to make it easier for people to tweet it. But if you haven’t put your username in it, then you’re missing out on its ability to bring engagement to your Twitter profile.
What happens when you set up your retweet button with your username? When someone tweets your post, it will append a via @username after the link. Anytime someone replies to a user who has tweeted your post, the reply will go to that person as well as you.
As an added bonus, after the person retweets your post, they will be prompted to follow you if you add your username to the Recommend field.
If you are using a WordPress plugin or other extension to add the retweet button to your content, be sure to look at the settings for the option to add your username to it. If it doesn’t allow you to do that, it might be time to try another plugin or extension.
Reply to People Who Tweet Your Content
If you add your username to your retweet button, you won’t miss out on those who retweet your content. Be sure to tweet them back. Even a simple thank you can help start a good Twitter relationship.
For those fortunate enough to receive hundreds, or maybe even thousands of tweets per post, saying thank you to everyone might not be realistic. But you should at least look through your retweets and reply to anyone who added a comment or question to their tweet. Those are the people who likely don’t use some form of automation to retweet content, and they are the ones who will notice your reply.
Incorporate Interactive Twitter Widgets in Posts
Want to get a Twitter conversation started inside your blog posts? Add a Twitter widget. The User timeline widget allows you to input your username, and shows your most recent tweets. People can click on the widget to tweet you.
You can also use the Search widget with a #hashtag. When people click on it, they will be able to tweet with your hashtag. Nike, for example uses #justdoit.
Alternatively, you can use the mention button or hashtag button in your posts to put a simple button that allows people to tweet you or your hashtag when they click on it to start a Twitter conversation.
Add “Tweet Us” to Your Bio
When people visit your profile, they’ll likely read your 160-character bio. One valuable thing to add to it would be the invitation to tweet you like these major accounts have.
As you can see from the engagement popup over @HTC’s account, their total engagement is 98%! While that has more to do with other factors than their bio, I’m sure that having that option in their bio helps new visitors and followers know they are open to engagement on Twitter.
Participate in Industry Twitter Chats
Twitter chats are public conversations about specific topics using a special #twitterchat hashtag. There are hundreds of them going on a weekly, biweekly and monthly basis. When you participate in a Twitter chat, you get the opportunity to make new connections with your customers and peers. Each time you tweet a valuable answer or comment in a Twitter chat, you’re likely to get replies and retweets alike.
To find the best Twitter chats for your business, you can refer to the Twitter Chat Calendar from Tweet Reports for chats on a variety of topics, from #4sqChat (foursquare) to #YthEmpChat (youth unemployment). For popular online marketing chats, try Ann Smarty’s Popular SEO and Social Media Twitter Chats Calendar. You’ll see a listing and description of the best online marketing chats as well as have the option to add all of them to your calendar.
Answer Questions from others on Twitter
Using Twitter search or Twitter management tools like HootSuite, you can perform searches for people asking questions about a particular topic by searching for queries such as “content marketing.”
This should find people asking questions about content marketing in English without links. It’s not a perfect filter for tweets, but it should guide you to a nice set of questions. You can get an idea of what you would see for this search below.
By answering questions related to your industry, you’ll be able to connect with new people, demonstrate your knowledge about a topic, and show just how helpful you are. This should lead to more followers and more engagement. Ultimately, it may even lead to your Twitter profile getting listed as one to follow for those interested in a particular topic.
Pose Questions on Twitter
Get conversations started by asking questions on Twitter. Instead of just tweeting out a link to an article about the latest redesign of the Twitter profile, ask your followers how they feel about the new design. Ask your followers about random trending topics. Ask your followers what their biggest challenge is right now. The latter will not only get you replies, but it might even give you some insight into what your customers want when it comes to products and services. Think of it as free market research!
Have a question about increasing your Twitter engagement? Tweet us and let us know!