Think 140 characters isn’t enough space to build meaningful relationships? Think again. According to social media experts, Twitter is one f the most efficient ways to create and foster multiple client relationships, fast. Here are 5 ways to do it:
Follow the 80/20 percent rule
Nutritionists often tout a diet technique that is 80/20--eat well 80 percent of the time, and you can splurge 20 percent of the time. Follow the same rule with Twitter by "selling" only 20 percent of the time, suggests Kathryn Rose, social media strategist and author of the upcoming book Solving the Social Media Puzzle: 7 Simple Steps to Planning a Social Media Marketing Strategy for Your Business: "People are on twitter to have conversations and interact, not to be sold." The sale will come naturally if you don’t force it.
Listen to the conversation
Twitter is like an instant, free focus group. "Set up a search with your business name and actively listen to others who tweet about it," says Heather R. Huhman, Founder and President of career consultancy ComeRecommended. [ www.comerecommended.com] If anything negative is said, reach out to the Tweeter directly and see if you can help them.
Focus using Twitter lists
If you have a lot of people you follow and who follow you on Twitter, it can be overwhelming--and distracting. Twitter lists can help you keep track of different groups of people you need to be interacting with regularly, suggests Rose. This might be particularly helpful if your business is multifaceted--you can target information for certain types of clients.
Inspiration is always in style on Twitter, says social media strategist. Kinsey Schofield. "Positive affirmations are a great way to have your content redistributed by others," says Schofield. Make someone smile, and they may just retweet your message (and by doing so, highlight your business).
Be hashtag savvy
Hashtag it up to build buzz. "Make your own hashtag that fits your business or if you are having an event, and follow other hashtags. For example, using #travel, you can engage with people specifically talking about travel," says Rose. Above all, remember that focused, personal messages to a honed audience of customers and potential customers will mean more meaningful relationships.