Charming Your Audience: Tips for Writing High-Quality, Professional, Tweets or Facebook Updates
Twitter and Facebook, with their millions of users, generate quite a lot of noise. Not everyone is on these sites to attract customers and clients. Some people are there to keep in touch with family and friends, keep tabs on their favorite celebrities, or just stay current with popular culture and trends.
One of the challenges of being successful on Twitter is to stand out from the crowd. How do you make sure you’re voice carries over the din? How do you promote your business or product, book or service, in a way that resonates with your audience, while maintaining professionalism? Here are some tips for creating interesting, professional Twitter posts and Facebook updates to attract new followers, as well as keep the followers you already have.
Know Your Audience
Whom are you trying to attract, and whom have you attracted that you’re trying to keep around? A successful tweet or status update cannot be written without first knowing these things. When you know whom you’re writing for, the content will come effortlessly. What have they come to expect from you? If you are going to deviate from your standard style, do so judiciously and appropriately, or the effect can be off-putting and can result in a loss of followers.
Start with once or twice a day. One tweet/update in the morning, and one in the evening is plenty for any professional on Twitter and Facebook. Reply as needed, and retweet/share on-topic tweets and posts from colleagues and other professionals in your field. (Learn more about @replies in a recent post, Parlez-Vous Twitterese?) Don’t worry about too many retweets. They show that you are an active participant in your community. Be sure to thank those that retweet you or share your post on Facebook.
Keep Your Tweets/Update Content On-Topic
If you’re a celebrity, people might have be interested to know that you’re wearing your lucky socks today, that you’re eating spaghetti, or that you are sleepy. For the rest of us, that’s not entirely the case. Most people don’t want to know every time you eat breakfast, what you had, where you had it, and who was there with you. Keep your tweets/updates on-topic, and relevant to your target audience. If you feel you absolutely must tell everyone about the delicious meal you just had, find the Twitter account or Facebook page of the restaurant, and mention them in the tweet or update. This is a great way to build rapport with your audience, and highlight your personal interests. Used sparingly, these types of updates can serve to lend some personality to your business.
Utilize Google Alerts
You can save yourself a lot of research time by setting up Google alerts (Google.com/alert) which will notify you of new, topical posts and pages which relate to your interests. These are great sources for tweets and Facebook updates.
Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (web, news, etc.) based on your queries.
Enter a search query you wish to monitor. You will see a preview of the type of results you’ll receive. Some handy uses of Google Alerts include:
- monitoring a developing news story
- keeping current on a competitor or industry
- getting the latest on a celebrity or event
- keeping tabs on your favorite sports teams
Keep Self-Promoting Links/Hashtags to a Minimum
It’s best to keep your number of self-promoting links, Twitpics, and videos in the range of 5-10% of your total posts/updates during the day. The simple fact of the matter is that too many “look at me” links appear spammy. Those who post updates that are nothing but hashtags typically get unfollowed quickly, or are never followed in the first place.
Avoid ALL CAPS/Ascii Art
If you want to be taken seriously on Twitter and Facebook, avoid using these at all costs. Your followers will appreciate it.
Use No More than 140 Characters
On Twitter, tweets have a limit of 140 characters. Using multiple tweets to post a tweet to override this limit is not a good decision. It’s become commonplace, but comes across as annoying, and highly unprofessional.
Everyone’s got something to sell. How well do you know your audience? Can they handle daily promotions? Do they invite them? Here are two examples of roughly the same sales pitch. One is effective, the other is decidedly not.
Joan Rivers and Jay Sherman approach their book sales the same way. The primary difference being that Joan knows that her fans and followers have come to expect this sort of extreme tactic from her, and they love it. It’s certainly not a glamorous way to go about selling your book, but she’s absolutely going to be heard.
Joan Rivers takes Costco by storm, after they banned her book from the store. Video will play in a new tab.
For those of us who don’t have Joan’s celebrity, it’s a good idea to keep our sales tweets and updates to a minimum, or we’ll sound like this:
Jay Sherman’s (voiced by Jon Lovitz) wildly unsuccessful attempt
at selling his book, using a standee.
Follow these guidelines and you will be certain to charm your social media audience.
Questions? Comments? I would love to hear from you! Thanks for reading.
CEO of WePost Media