Twitter chats, I believe, are an under-utilized way to connect with your target audience in a way you can’t anywhere else online.
I remember when I participated in my first Twitter chat years ago. It was for job at a recruitment company and I remember feeling totally lost because everything moved so fast! Despite it being a fast-paced environment, a small business can glean a lot of intel from observing and participating in Twitter chats. Let’s dive into today’s topic.
Before we fully dive into how you can get the most out of a Twitter chat, let’s first define what one actually is, for those that aren’t familiar. A Twitter chat is a live chat that a group of Twitter users discuss a certain topic at a pre-determined time. The host of the Twitter chat determines a hashtag for all participants to use, so you can have a stream of everyone participating in the chat.
The host or moderator will prompt the participants with questions (usually 7-10) to answer and share their experience.
A Twitter chat is a great way to network with a large group of like-minded individuals, gain insight, and potentially get you new business.
I have gained new clients, developed new business relationships, and networked with others in my industry all via Twitter chats, so they are definitely a tool to grow your business.
You first need to find the right chats to join. Joining the right kind of chats are crucial to your success, so choose wisely.
If you’re looking to network with others in your industry, select chats that are specific to your industry.
If you’re looking to gain exposure of your brand and potentially get new clients or customers, do the research and find out what Twitter chats your audience participates in. They probably won’t be participating in the industry related ones I first mentioned, because that’s not where they will find the most value.Find out how small businesses can use Twitter chats to grow their brand from @BrittneyLLynn! #smallbiz #smallbiztips Click To Tweet
You can shine on a Twitter chat if you consistently offer super valuable information. This does not mean going into a Twitter chat and only promoting your content and services. In fact, I would suggest not promoting any of your offerings or services unless someone specifically asks. You want to be seen as a thought leader, not a product pusher.
Participating in a Twitter chat isn’t all about pushing your products and gaining thousands of new customers, it’s about relationship building and one-on-one interaction with a certain group of people. Forcing your products and services down people’s throats won’t make them want to check out your business, it will only turn them away.
A first impression can be a lasting impression, so make it worthwhile.
What I find the most valuable out of a Twitter chat is what actually happens after the chat is over. While Twitter chats do move a lightening speed, find 3-4 people that you resonate with and connect with them on a deeper level after the chat.
Start following their blogs and regularly comment. Retweet their tweets and pin their blog posts on Pinterest. Selecting a few people to develop a deeper connection with will help make the Twitter chat seem less like a big scary place.
You can also possibly find people to collaborate with on a project. I’ve heard of numerous relationships begin through a Twitter chat, and then later they partner to host a webinar together or to offer a product. The opportunities are endless.
Another task to do post-Twitter chat is making a Twitter list. If you followed my tip on carefully choosing Twitter chats that are related to your industry, or your target market’s industry, this tip should be a breeze.
Go back through the tweets and identify people who could potentially be future clients/customers of yours. I suggest creating a Twitter list to help you easily categorize these.
Once your Twitter list is created, keep an eye on what these people tweet, the questions they ask, and offer as much as advice as you can. These individuals will remember how you once helped them and could eventually come to use your product or service in the future.
P.S. I’m conducting a one question survey related to social media and small business owners. I would greatly appreciate it if you took a few minutes to answer my one question. You can fill out the survey here. Thanks for your feedback!
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