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How to attract and engage Twitter followers

Twitter guide for businesses

Step 7. Squeeze as much information as possible into your tweets. Although URLs will appear shortened, the longer version still uses up to 20 characters of a tweet’s 140-character limit. You may therefore wish to shorten them yourself. A URL-shortening service such as bit.ly will leave you more characters for your tweet.

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Step 8. Be concise and clear. Include generic terms that other users may be searching for. For example, we managed to squeeze ‘digital camera’, ‘photo’, ‘photo frame’ and ‘images’ into the tweet “Our new photo frames come in multiple colours and sizes. Great for digital camera photos. Show off your favourite images in style.”

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Step 9. If your company is showing off its wares at a convention or other event, use hashtags to attract people who are interested in or visiting that event. A hashtag is a generic search term prefaced with the ‘#’ symbol. Clicking a hashtag within a tweet will call up all tweets that contain it.

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Step 10. Crosslink your website and Twitter feed. Regularly mention your blog or website, as well as any products of particular interest. Note, however, that your followers are likely to drop you if they think you’re interested only in marketing. Also remember that your tweets are searchable on Google: choose your words carefully.

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Step 11. Keep abreast of new products in the market; tweeting about them may help you attract relevant followers. For instance, our fictitious photo frame seller monitors new digital camera models. By including product names in their tweets, they hope to attract photography fans who may also be interested in frames.

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Step 12. Tweet regularly. If you want to keep hold of your followers and hopefully attract new ones, you must maintain a strong presence. That might mean tweeting daily, although you should ensure your tweets remain relevant, lively and engaging. Don’t simply repeat the same bland tweets day in, day out.

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Step 13. Schedule your tweets. Rather than uploading a number of tweets at once, spreading them out will help your company stay at the top of your followers’ feeds for longer. TweetDeck offers this feature, but there are lots of alternatives. Just remember to be available to respond.

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Step 14. Engage with your followers. Twitter is a two-way street. Respond to your followers’ tweets and they may mention you kindly to others. If someone complains about your service or products, or asks for your help, a response is essential. Monitor mentions and @replies regularly and take appropriate action.

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