Social media is here to stay and utilizing it for marketing is only going to become more important as more people embrace this channel to give and receive information. This article focuses on Twitter but these core principles can be applied to any social media or even traditional off-line marketing techniques. None of the concepts are difficult to apply.
If all you do is tweet out 140 characters that say, "Buy this great thing now! Link to my site" then you may get a sale or two. Heck, if you have a large enough list you may even be fooled into believing that it's effective. You may get some quick results you will not have any lasting results if you're not providing people with a reason to stay connected.
Lead with value. This is first, and by far the most important, core principle in marketing. Leading with value leaves the door wide open for you to determine what "value" is for you and your market. I have provided value by writing this article. You can provide value by sharing this article (and others like it) or by posting a quote that others may find inspiring, thereby valuable. It's really that simple. The more you give, the more you get.
Keep it interesting and varied. Every post does not have to be the greatest, new thought or even specific to your topic. Find a good quote, a video that's interesting or funny, share ways to save money, get organized or save time or just post a fun photo. There is an endless supply of quality content that you can post so when you're ready to post a sales tweet prospects will actually look at it instead of saying to themselves, "Here we go again with another sales pitch" and press "delete" .
Do not over-saturate with "sales" tweets. There are different theories on how often you should place a sales tweet in your rotation. Those ratios vary from one sales tweet in every three tweets to one in ten. I tend to subscribe to the one in ten arena myself. I'd rather have people stay connected to me than have them feel pressured or bothered by a constant flood of "BUY! BUY! BUY!" tweets. Would not you delete someone if they did that to you?
Respond to Direct Messages (DM). This is a very effective way to build a relationship with your followers. Also, thank people for their comments or retweets of your content. Remember Twitter is a two way street – it's not just for you to blast out content. It's for creating relationships. Take a little time and explore some of the sites and links your followers send you and comment on them. People love to get compliments and know that you are "listening."
Build relationships. Twitter is a quick and easy way to connect with people and open the door for a genuine conversation. Once you've engaged someone you have a far better chance of buying your goods or services. After all, people do not buy on fact. They buy on emotion. When you interact with someone you develop trust, and that's essential for a lasting relationship and a sale.