So, you want to learn how to market on Twitter?
Brands love Twitter, and it’s easy to see why. With 211 million monetizable daily active users (a metric referred to as mDAU), the conversational channel has an impressive base of engaged users. As a result of the character limit (tweets need to be 280 characters or less), brands have taken on a much more fun and relatable tone than other channels.
Twitter’s casual tone does not mean success on the channel is easy, however. Brands face the challenge of navigating through fleeting trends and noisy chatter in order to find an audience.
The emergence of social entertainment has added a new dynamic to Twitter marketing, as audiences now turn to social media in order to be entertained. Brands that are able to write entertaining copy are rewarded with the most retweets and likes. In order to help you navigate the changing Twitter landscape, Dash Hudson has prepared a guide of best practices for marketing on the channel that covers:
A Twitter marketing strategy is an all-encompassing plan for how a brand engages with the social platform. This includes formalizing Twitter brand guidelines, assigning roles to social media managers, deciding on a tone your brand should take, figuring out workflows for customer service and DMs, and setting smart, measurable goals to track how you’re doing. Making these decisions before you start tweeting is a lot of planning, but making these decisions now will set you up for success later on.
Most brands are already on Twitter, but in the era of social entertainment, newer brands may choose to skip traditional social channels and focus on TikTok. TikTok’s audience is younger, and many users cannot be found on any other social channel, including Twitter. It raises the question of whether or not it’s worth investing in Twitter if your brand’s target audience is found elsewhere.
The answer is yes––Twitter remains a highly visible, public-facing representation of your brand, and even if you don’t see the sales potential of the channel, it still serves an important purpose for public relations, press releases, and customer support. There is also a risk that if your brand is not present on the channel, an imposter may be able to gain followers for malicious reasons. When in doubt, a limited Twitter strategy is better than no official Twitter brand presence.
New Twitter marketing tools are continuing to emerge, such as Spaces, monetization for creators, live-stream shopping, and non-fungible token (NFT) verification (making Twitter one of the first social channels to integrate metaverse concepts). As traditional social media channels enter the world of social entertainment, Twitter will likely continue to introduce new features that align with your entertainment strategy.
Getting started on such a well-established social media platform can be intimidating, as your competitors likely already have a large audience. However, every brand needs to start from somewhere, and there is no better way to start a new social media account than by understanding the Twitter algorithm, establishing measurable goals, team guidelines and a fresh Twitter handle that is uniquely yours.
While Twitter can appear to be a channel where anything goes, there is still a considerable amount of strategy that goes into tweets from brands. To be able to post timely content, marketers should prepare solid Twitter brand guidelines for their social teams, which outline:
Twitter social media marketing is less product and purchase-oriented than other channels, but it can still be a great traffic driver to your website. Make sure to add a link to your website in your Twitter bio, and include links whenever you tweet about a product or service your audience may be interested in purchasing.
Beyond sales, Twitter is also a strong PR vehicle due to how shareable tweets are, and many brands use it to launch new campaigns or marketing stunts. The list of trending topics refreshes regularly and varies by region, so there is always an opportunity to get people talking about your brand if you tweet something that timely and relevant.
Nick Jr. understands that its target demographic is not necessarily on Twitter, however, Millennials who are now parents can be found on the channel. They strategically cater to users’ nostalgia for old TV shows to go viral. This strategy keeps the brand top-of-mind to an audience they traditionally would not market to.
Your username will be highly visible to potential customers, so choose one as close to your brand name as possible. From there, you can also set your location if you are based out of a specific region, or launching a regional handle, as well as add a link to drive traffic to your website.
Twitter bios are often the first thing users see when they visit a profile, and you only have a few short sentences to explain what your brand is, and what you have to offer. Take care to write copy that condenses as much meaningful information as possible into your bio, which will also prepare you for navigating Twitter’s character limit for tweets later on.
Twitter has circular profile pictures, which scale to small icons on mobile devices. You will want to choose a profile picture that crops well in that form while keeping your brand instantly recognizable. Many brands choose initials or iconic logos for their profile pictures.
While many platforms have incorporated video into their platform, and while Twitter does use video as well, Twitter is unique in that it's a microblogging site where users can write down their thoughts and brands can announce news in a casual tone. It's also unique in that it's a very news-centric platform, from the News tab to the Trending tab. It's also a great platform for brands to share links to relevant web pages, blogs, and other content.
Twitter is home to a host of Twitter Features for both users and business accounts — here are some must-use Twitter features to use to increase engagement:
Twitter polls can be used to gauge feedback from your audience on your brand's products or services, or simply to ask your followers their opinions on trending topics.
Surprisingly a newer feature on Twitter, as of October 2022 users can incorporate GIFs, videos, and images (with the right Twitter image size) in tweets made on the mobile app. This often creates a more eye-catching tweet that takes up more room on the SERP page.
Depending on your niche and scale of your social team, this might not make sense — but if it does make sense for your brand, this is a great feature to speak directly to your audience.
No, your Twitter account shouldn't jump on every trending topic in hopes of receiving more engagement. However, if there are topics that relate to your business or that your audience is likely paying attention to, try to find an organic way to enter the conversion — this could be with a retweet or quote-retweet.
Many social marketers wonder how to use Twitter Communities for brand growth, and often have a goal to 'create a community', and there's not easier way to do this than with the 'Communities' feature. This allows you to form a niche group to share information and create conversations surrounding a particular topic. For example, if you're a beauty brand, you might want to start a group for perfume enthusiasts to discuss their favorite olfactory products.
Don't confuse Twitter Communities with Spaces — Spaces is a place (on iOS) to host live audio chats with followers. This is an ideal spot to host Q&A's, AMA's (ask me anything), or enlightening conversations with key leaders within your organization.
Twitter is filled with a lot of noise, and lists provide an easy way for you to curate Twitter accounts into customized groupings. This is particularly beneficial for social managers to cut through some of the noise and choose which accounts appear on their timeline. You can also follow others' lists that might be relevant to your brand and account.
To use Twitter to build your brand, marketers should focus on a few key areas — developing a visual identity and their brand voice.
Twitter has a character limit of 280 characters in total. This limitation challenges marketers to get to the point as soon as possible, which means the channel works better with short, quippy copy than longer statements. The channel’s focus on brevity has given life to the unique, irreverent tone that has become its signature, and is popular with Twitter users.
Many brands choose to be casual on Twitter. The way that they communicate with audiences is significantly different from how they would approach Facebook or Instagram, however, it is no less impactful. Take a look at the top marketing leaders to follow on Twitter to see examples of how powerful brief content can be.
Twitter allows brands to group multiple tweets into long-form threads, however, it is easy for tweets in threads to be retweeted out of context, and longer copy is better served being embedded as an image (especially when it comes to sensitive statements that you do not want to be taken out of context), or a link out to your website.
When developing your brand voice, it is important to consider that users are likely being exposed to a multitude of other brands on any given day, and an approach that may seem unique to social media marketers may be overexposed to audiences. “Casual” can be boring if every brand speaks the same way. The content that you share on Twitter should be unique to your brand, and spoken about in a way that only your brand can.
While Twitter is more text-heavy than most other social channels, the same best practice that goes for Facebook also applies here. Tweets with visuals typically perform better and increase brand awareness. Think of visuals as another way your brand can develop a unique voice and stand out from the crowd.
Brands are engaging with users in a multitude of ways, including asking questions in polls, sharing videos, and hosting Spaces with special guests. The channel is always introducing new ways to post, and brands should keep tabs on new Twitter marketing solutions they can leverage to find new audiences.
No two days are the same on Twitter. Your brand will want to stay on top of holidays, special occasions, and even all of the latest pop culture moments, such as movie releases or new shows on Netflix, to earn Twitter engagement. Arby’s always commemorates the releases of the year’s top video games with original, food-based artwork, to entertain its audience and be a part of conversations its target audience cares about. When you make a content plan and schedule tweets in advance, you are able to market to consumers with much more precision.
Twitter is practically made for user-generated content. Sharing tweets can be as simple as hitting the retweet button, or quote tweeting if you want to add your own commentary. Engaging with your audience doesn’t get any easier than it does on Twitter, and brands will want to make sure they’re doing a lot of it to add a human touch to their social media presence.
Tip: Brands tend to overuse hashtags; however, UGC is the perfect opportunity for you to create a branded hashtag that you can tactically promote in order to get responses, testimonials, and fan art. Twitter UGC is a fantastic way to interact with your audience and add fresh, original, authentic content to your calendar.
Twitter offers deep insights into the performance of your tweets, Twitter ads, and the overall growth of your account. By leveraging this information, you will be able to determine which tones and categories of content perform best with your audience, and determine your best approach on the channel. In order to take your insights even further, integrate Dash Hudson’s Twitter insights into your workflow.
It is only natural for marketers to want to replicate other brands that are able to craft a hit tweet and go viral, however, the more your voice resembles other brands, the less likely users are to be engaged by yours. Start by looking at how your competitors engage with users, and identify ways that you can do things differently in order to make your mark on Twitter. Traditional social networking is changing, and entertaining users will be more important than ever in the coming year.
One of the best ways to determine if Twitter is the best platform for your brand is to start a paid Twitter Ads campaign — but of course, you can incorporate organic content along with paid into your total Twitter strategy. This is a great way to increase your reach and build followers by putting your content out there to potential followers who haven't seen your account.
Yes, Twitter is all about pushing your own content out there, however, it's also important to remember that it's the perfect place for a conversation. Like follower replies, tweets you're tagged in, reply to interesting comments, and answer questions. According to Statista, 55% of Twitter users prefer informative posts, followed by Relevant posts — try posting informative content and see how your followers interact with your tweets.
With Dash Hudson, you are able to schedule, measure, and build sophisticated reports of your brand’s performance on Twitter in order to drive results. Work smarter by using a powerful marketing tool to take the manual effort out of your Twitter strategy, and refine your customer journey with actionable Twitter and competitive insights to drive results with your engaged Twitter audience.
Yes, Twitter marketing is worth it — depending on your goals. 42% of Twitter users are between 18-29 years old, while 30-49 year olds comprise 27% of users. If your target demographic is 65 years of age or older, Twitter might not be your central focus. However, Twitter is a great channel to share copy, tap into paid social with ads via a Twitter Ads Account, and re-post your visual content. Cross-channel marketing is an effective strategy for many brands, and Twitter is a great channel to use for this.
While the best brands on Twitter might be subjective, engagement is a major KPI for many brands — these are the brands Twitter itself noted garnered some of the best engagement in 2022:
But what about Twitter accounts with the most followers? These are the most followed brands on Twitter: