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Having recently been interviewed by OK! magazine for my expertise as a psychologist, I have been pondering the use of Twitter for PR purposes.

It’s strange that more people don’t use Twitter for promoting their business.  You can do a lot with Twitter and it is designed to make it easy to follow others, get others to follow you, tweet about others, re-tweet (share) others’ tweets, send private messages and so on.

Part of the problem with getting entrepreneurs and business owners into using Twitter is that it looks very alien from the outside looking in.  Many people I know haven’t even considered the use of Twitter as a string to their PR bow because they are put off by all the hash tags and the keywords and the @ signs.  They also find the sheer number of tweets that get posted rather overwhelming and wonder how one can really follow anything or have one’s own voice heard.

Whilst I may not be huge on Twitter just yet, I can see its potential, and will continue to steadily grow my Twitter following and the number of tweeters I follow.

Let me give you some advantages of using Twitter, and some insights, so that entrepreneurs, business owners and managers around Manchester can help their own business’ success:

  1. It’s free.
  2. It’s far reaching.
  3. It’s there to use as and when you get the chance, i.e. it’s flexible.
  4. Don’t let it take away from your other important activities; spend some time on there but not your whole day!
  5. If others follow you and their tweets look reasonable enough, follow them back.
  6. Follow famous people that you look up to and send them messages from time to time; some of them will respond.  Some will even follow you.
  7. Hashtags (#) are used to allow people to search the whole of Twitter for topics being discussed which pertain to certain keywords, e.g. #entrepreneurs #networking #success.  If there are two or more words that make up the keyword then the spaces between the words are removed, e.g. #MichaelJackson #OhMyGod.  It’s irrelevant whether it’s written with uppercase or lowercase letters.
  8. Tweets should not contain too many hastags within one tweet as it can become difficult for others to digest and, therefore, difficult to grab people’s attention with its content.
  9. ‘RT’ means ‘re-tweet’ which tweeters tend to use to ask you to re-tweet their message to your followers.
  10. Each Twitter username has an @ sign prefix so if you notice @ signs in a tweet they are simply referring to another tweeter.  This can be a way to send a public message directed at certain users or a way to bring a Twitter user’s attention to your tweet.
  11. Using the hashtag #FF on a Friday followed by one or more Twitter username is a way for you to suggest to your followers that they should follow that particular tweeter.
  12. Don’t post negative comments on there, it can be a real turn-off.
  13. Unless you are on a par with Lord Sugar or Richard Branson, most people won’t be interested in the mundane aspects of your life.
  14. Remember that if you want to build your brand internationally then you need to tweet at the times those parts of the world are likely to be awake.
  15. Try to add value to others’ lives when you tweet.
  16. Don’t argue on Twitter.
  17. Your Twitter conduct will help shape your brand’s reputation, positively or negatively, always remember that.
  18. Help others with their PR campaign by re-tweeting their posts or suggesting to others that they follow that Twitter user.
  19. Promote other peoples’ brands and they will be grateful.  When people are grateful they will often want to help you too.  Do so from the heart, though, don’t just promote them with your own future benefits in mind.  Promote others to simply help them.  If they repay you in kindness then great.  If they don’t, so be it.  You’ll soon learn who is keen to work in a mutually beneficial way and you will naturally rotate towards them.
  20. Begin building a relationship on Twitter and then follow it up offline.  Twitter is limited in not only word count but also in the ability to foster deeper connections with others.  Twitter is great for introductions but you cannot build deep meaningful relationships on there.

Confused, still unsure or simply want more information?  Send me your questions and thoughts at twitter.com/samowencoaching.

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