Twitter for business: How to drive your customers to action

Twitter’s partnership manager Brian Lavery shares his essential tips to make the social media site work better for your business

In the first of a series of ‘Twitter Academy’ webinars hosted by Twitter to help businesses, Brian Lavery, Twitter Europe partnership manager, discussed the various ways entrepreneurs can use the social networking platform to their advantage.

Outlining the “anatomy” of a direct response (DR) tweet, how to run promotions on Twitter and how you can monitor your progress, Lavery sought to “cover all the bases” of Twitter for business; specifically ways to improve audience engagement.

With over 241 million monthly active users, Twitter is now one of the most effective, free tools for business promotion so ensure you follow Lavery’s top tips to perfect your Twitter strategy…

Five key metrics to increase engagement on Twitter

  • Web traffic – using tweets to drive traffic to your site.
  • Conversions – generate sales via Twitter (good for e-commerce businesses). With conversions you need to deliver a strong call to action and deliver a compelling offer that piques interest. There should be a question involved to create urgency.
  • Sign-ups – acquire data and leads from Twitter users.
  • Downloads – distribute content or apps through Twitter activity.
  • On-platform activity – gain followers, retweets and favourites.

If you’re looking to drive conversions or web traffic, these tweets are known as direct response (DR) tweets.

Driving positive action on Twitter – what works?

Lavery’s formula for the perfect tweet is:

  1. Question
  2. Solution
  3. Call to action
  4. Link

See example below:

Twitter for business perfect tweet formula

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How to improve click rates on Twitter

With marketing and business tweets, your main goal is to get people to click on your hyperlink and access, or download, your content. Lavery suggests that you maintain a focus on the URL link and don’t distract the user.

  • DONT overdo exclamation marks as these tweets usually get lower click throughs.
  • DONT include Twitter handles @yourname and DONT use hashtags # as it can distract – you want people to click on your link not the handle.
  • DO create hashtags for your own business if it’s relevant i.e. Startups’ Twitter feed uses hashtags #startups100 and #startupsawards to spread the word.
  • DO be attractive – use words such as ‘exclusive’, ‘bonus’, ‘free’, ‘sale’ and ‘code’.
  • DO be visual- use terms such as ‘grow’, ‘win’ and ‘get’.
  • DO use superlatives – use ‘best’ NOT ‘good’ and ‘amazing’ NOT ‘excellent’.
  • DO be personal – use ‘you’ for the customer and ‘we’ for your company.

Lavery points out that these tips are a starting point and that you should experiment and try multiple versions of tweets and then refine these tweets based on what works best.

Running business promotions on Twitter

Twitter-only promotions are a method in which you can drive sales, increase purchase size and boost customer satisfaction. There are several different strategies you can use such as online codes, contests and flash sales.

For online codes, Lavery says you should follow the steps of ‘tease, reveal and reward’ as shown below:

Twitter for business: online code redemption

Alternatively, you could run a Twitter contest which will help to increase audience engagement by motivating your followers to participate:

Twitter for business: tease, reveal and reward

Another great means of customer engagement is to use what Lavery calls ‘flock to unlock’ by which you make an offer available to your followers once it has been retweeted (shared) a predetermined number of times:

Twitter flock to unlock

Lavery also points to flash sales as a way to generate demand and “create excitement” by surprising your followers. For these tweets, he suggests you ‘tease, reveal and remind’ as shown here:

Twitter for business: flash sales

Monitoring your business’ progress with Twitter

It’s pointless spending time on your business’ Twitter strategy if you don’t manage your growth and follower numbers. Follower growth is proof of a positive customer experience, retweets are effectively free marketing and replies and favourites are good indicators that your content is engaging. Therefore, it is essential that you always record and measure your follower numbers and Twitter stats to track your progress over time.

There are several Twitter analytics tools specifically designed for this purpose. One service offered by Twitter is, a service which allows you to access your Twitter dashboard and gather insights on your Twitter engagement. Alongside Twitter’s own offering there are also several ‘Twitter-certified’ analytics tools which operate in a similar fashion such as:

  • Hootsuite
  • Socialflow
  • Wayin
  • Sysomos
  • Brandwatch
  • Crimson Hexagon
  • Turvy

Finally, ensure you track your competition; look at what’s working for them and incorporate their methods into your social media strategy

The next Twitter Academy webinar ‘Driving Direst Response with Twitter Ads’ will take place on 26 March, click here to register your interest.

For more information on using Twitter for your business, visit our dedicated social media channel.


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