Twitter is at the front of the social media pack these days, and using it wisely can do wonders to help your firm.
From brand recognition to new clients, Twitter offers opportunities to help your firm flourish and grow. This article by Susan Varty points out ten good ways to make the most of it.
- Create a community. As in face to face interactions, take turns talking and listening. Pay attention to what your followers are talking about and what their needs are. Tweet to your crowd – offer news they can use rather than shameless self-promotion.
- Tailor for retweeting. Retweets increase the number of people who learn about your firm and its value, so make your tweets easy to spread by keeping them short. Keep track of retweet recipients too, since they’re likely to be interested in your message.
- Follow up. Begin conversations with retweet recipients and others in your Twitter community. Retweet relevant tweets by others. Talking and listening lets you learn more about needs your firm might be able to fill, as well as share your advice. You might make a friend or a client!
- Use hashtags (#). Hashtags are great tools to find and create user groups interested in the same things. They’re a way to fine tune your sharing as well as your reading. And for those of you who aren’t familiar with them, hashtags are simply adding the number sign (#) in front of a keyword to make it searchable.
- Be a host. You can host a Twitter chat once or at regular intervals by using hashtags to establish the subject and asking questions. Pick a topic that shows your expertise and include the topic hashtag in each tweet. Sharing knowledge helps build respect and goodwill for your firm, and establishes you as a thought leader.
- Look locally. Most CPA firms mainly serve nearby clients, so focus on tweeters close to you. Use search tools to find local users interested in your practice areas and begin a conversation.
- Become an information hub. You can gather useful articles that you and others have shared each day and put them in a collection with paper.li or similar programs. This enhances your status as the source for advice, and those whose links you have included will appreciate the mentions, too.
- Start a tradition. You can make a habit that followers can count on, and offer up some advice, articles or special information at the same time each week. Counting on you for useful input at a regular time helps you become a presence in their mental maps of valued services.
- Be a good neighbor. Twitter is a place to listen and create a community of fond followers, not the place to push your firm on a captive audience. Answer questions. Chat. Try to become a wise advisor and a font of useful information as a path to wooing new clients. People will be turned off by a hard sell in this venue and stop following you. That’s counter-productive.
- Expand. Once you’ve got active conversations with individual followers who need more specific services, you’ll want to use direct messages to share private contact information. Your goal should be to build relationships that eventually lead followers to connect with your firm website or professional email, so you can work towards helping them as clients.
Twitter can be a lot of fun and can also be a great vehicle for your company’s growth. Check it out with these tips in mind and see what other ways you can find to use it to benefit your accounting firm.