14 biggest mistakes businesses make on Twitter

Many businesses find Twitter to be an effective social media marketing channel.

It offers the opportunity to build your brand’s credibility, engage directly with customers and reach a larger audience.

Twitter, originally created as a micro-blogging platform, is an online news and social networking site, where users can communicate publicly through short posts called tweets.

The social platform boasts about 186 million daily active users and 38 million users from within the U.S.

But with the opportunities come the risk of mistakes that can poorly reflect on your brand (and cause a subsequent loss of revenue).

See our snapshot of the challenges and opportunities of Twitter for businesses.

The following are 14 of the biggest mistakes business make on Twitter.

Not optimizing your Twitter profile

Sure, there is only so much you can do to optimize your Twitter profile, but if you’re not regularly reviewing how your Twitter account looks and what first impressions it might be giving other users, you’re missing out.

Make sure you:

  • Upload your logo or another brand-representative image as your profile photo
  • Choose a relevant and eye-catching cover image
  • Fill out your bio with key information about what your business does and how it helps people. You can check out Twitter accounts you aspire to or compete with for inspiration
  • Pick a URL that is easy to remember and best for potential leads to click on to find out more

No Twitter content plan

Just like any other channel, you’ll be more effective with a plan. Think through your goals. Identify your target audience. Then, consider the mix of content that can help you achieve your goals and reach your target audience.

Check out our seven tips to help you level up your content marketing (whether it’s on Twitter or elsewhere).

Inconsistent brand voice

Your brand story, personality and voice are all critically important to how Twitter users view and understand your brand. 

If you lack consistency in your brand voice, it’s going to be very confusing for anyone you reach with your tweets. In addition, you want to ensure that you’re leaving out any industry jargon in your messagin (unless you are specifically targeting those who understand that jargon, of course).

Keep in mind, that your brand voice should make you human in your messaging and engagement with Twitter users.

See our eight tips for finding your brand voice. Once you know your brand voice, lock it in for your social media efforts and beyond with our five tips to create a brand style guide.

Tweeting too much (or not enough)

Tweet too much, and you look like spam. Tweet too infrequently, and users don’t find you to be an active or credible Twitter account to engage with or follow. It’s easy to make this Twitter mistake, for sure.

Try to keep your tweeting to fewer than four tweets per hour.

Tweeting only at set times

Twitter is a fast-moving social network. If you only tweet at the same time every time, then you’re missing an opportunity to reach more Twitter users. 

You can avoid this Twitter mistake by scheduling your tweets at different times. You can then use Twitter Analytics to gauge what works best for your audience.

Lacking any multimedia tweets

Go beyond just text-only tweets if you want to engage more with your target audience. Aim to mix up your content types:

  • Photos
  • Videos
  • Infographics
  • GIFs

Tweets with images are about 34 percent more likely to get retweeted than tweets with no images.

Talking about your business too much

Just like on any social media platform, if you talk about yourself too much, you run the risk of either losing engagement, being seen as spam or both. 

Remember the reason why most users are using Twitter. Likely, they want to be informed and/or entertained.

Some companies strive for the 80-20 rule, where they only self-promote 20 percent of the time. Others aim for a rule of thirds, where one-third is self-promotion, another third is entertainment and the last third is education. 

There’s no blatant right or wrong content mix. Take time to review your resources and what makes the most sense for your business, with the goal being to keep the self-promotion to a minimum.

As you begin to plan your Twitter content, consider using a content calendar.

Ignoring trending topics on Twitter

Twitter makes it easy to understand what topics are trending at any given time. You should keep an eye out for the topics that are relevant to your brand and that you can contribute something to the conversation.

Not all trending topics will be relevant. So, if it feels like a reach, it probably is, and you should leave it be.

Using too many hashtags

Unlike Instagram (where users technically can use up to 30 hashtags), Twitter is more restrained by total character count and best practices in hashtag usage.

Tweets with hashtags can increase engagement up to 50 percent for brands

But you want to stick to one, maybe two, at most. Once you go above that, you risk looking spammy to other Twitter users. So, be sure to do your research on the best one or two hashtags you should be using to avoid this common Twitter mistake.

Missing your opportunity to ask for retweets

While you might feel it’s a little over-the-top or salesy to ask for retweets, you’ll actually receive a boost in engagement overall. Tweets have a 12 times higher chance of being retweeted if you simply ask for it.

You’ll want to use the phrase “retweet” rather than “RT,” though.

The key is that you’re asking on content that is engaging enough for users to see the value of retweeting. That simple act of asking alone won’t get you the retweets you want if your content isn’t worthy.

Leaving your followers hanging

It’s easy to forget the social conversation side of Twitter since the platform moves so fast. And many businesses do.

But regardless of the noise that Twitter can generate at times, you must make it a priority to respond to any comments or direct messages that come your way. In addition, you want to comment and retweet others’ posts if you find them interesting and in line with your brand.

You want to build relationships with your followers and the broader Twitter community, and that won’t happen if you only broadcast content and never engage.

Ignoring negative comments

Related to not engaging with your followers, you cannot ignore any negative comments that come your way.

No business enjoys negative comments or reviews, but they are part of maintaining an online presence, which you absolutely want to do. Treat them as opportunities to turn this negative commenter into a fan, based on your excellent customer service and social media voice.

Check out our 11 tips to best respond to negative commenters.

Retweeting mentions of your business

Resist the temptation to retweet every mention of your brand. It can come across a little shallow, salesy and insincere to other Twitter users.

Instead, you can reply to the tweet and move on. Or, if it really should be shared, retweet it but with a comment on it to give it context to avoid this easy-to-make Twitter mistake.

Expecting instant success

Most social media marketing success is about the long-term strategy culminating in success over time.

This is no different for Twitter. Tweet once or even three times, and you likely will not see an immediate achievement of your goals.

Monitor your overall account performance for clues on what you can do more of and what you should do less of. Remember that Twitter Analytics can help you with this. It’s free to use and is native to the platform.

Check out our eight expert tips to help you market your business better on Twitter.

As you’re creating your author bio, consider leveling up your digital marketing with DailyStory and our 21-day free trial. Features include automating various marketing tasks, dynamic audience segmentation and more. Schedule your free demo with us today.

Got Twitter? 8 expert tips to help you market your business better

While Twitter is a powerful social media platform, it’s easy for your business to get lost in the “noise.”

But it’s worth cutting through and getting your message heard. It’s important to stand out.

The average Twitter user follows at least five businesses, and about 80 percent of all Twitter users have mentioned a brand in a tweet.

Dig deeper into the challenges and opportunities of Twitter for your business.

The following are eight expert tips to help you market your business more effectively on Twitter.

Audit your Twitter account

To know where you want to go, you have to understand where you currently are. Auditing your Twitter account is not only important to do, it’s something you should do regularly.

As you’re examining your account, ask these questions:

  • What types of content are we posting?
  • What’s successful?
  • What isn’t working?
  • Is our posting consistent?
  • Who is our audience?
  • When are our followers active?
  • Are we seeing a return of investment (ROI)?
  • What can we do to improve our Twitter presence?

Many of these answers can be found in your Twitter Analytics. Check out our snapshot to help you navigate Twitter Analytics.

Pay particular attention to your audience and who they are. This is critical to determining the content that will work best for your brand on Twitter.

Research your competition

As you’re getting a sense of what’s happening on your Twitter account, it’s worthwhile to evaluate what you’re competition is doing as well.

This will help inform your own Twitter strategy.

As you’re researching, ask these questions:

  • What are they doing that you should be doing? Or can do better?
  • What isn’t working for them?
  • How do they handle customer service?
  • How often are they posting?
  • Are their followers engaging with them? How?

Dive deeper into what comprises a competitive analysis and how to start your own.

Set S.M.A.R.T. goals

Unsurprisingly, to know whether you’re successful in any marketing effort relies on the goals you set in the beginning.

Goals help us focus on what we want to achieve while also helping know when we need to pivot our strategy (because we’ll know if it’s working or not).

S.M.A.R.T. goals specifically are: 

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

While you’re setting these goals, remember to break them down into measurable indicators so that you can easily grasp where you’re at in your efforts.

Maybe you want to drive more referral traffic from Twitter to your website. Understand where you’re at now, identify where you want to be (within reason) and set a deadline to get there. Once you’ve added some actions that will help you get there, you’re well on your way to outlining a Twitter strategy for your business.

Dive deeper (and beyond Twitter) with our seven tips for setting achievable marketing goals for your business.

Create a set of guidelines

A lot can go wrong on social media. Creating a social media style guide will help keep your communications clear, consistent and representative of your brand at all times.

These guidelines, which span beyond just Twitter, also help you onboard new team members more easily.

Be sure to include:

  • Elements of your overall brand, such as tone
  • Details about your audience
  • Branded hashtags, including how and when to use them
  • How and when to use emojis (and which emojis)
  • How to format links

The key is to be ready for anything. And should the true unpredictable happen, include a standard operating procedure in order to decide the best course of action.

Make a content calendar

As you’re getting a sense of what works for your audience, you’ll want to plan out specific posts.

This will help you not only be more strategic and consistent overall with your posts, but you’ll also stay ahead of holidays and fun “social media holidays,” such as #NationalPuppyDay (for example). 

As you’re creating your content calendar, think about:

  • The best times to post
  • How often you should post
  • Any approval needed for your posts
  • Balancing promotional posts with non-promotional posts

Check out our eight tips for creating a content calendar for your brand.

Follow best practices

As easy as this sounds, best practices can shift as platforms and audiences evolve. For Twitter, it’s important to stay on top of any shifting practices and trends.

However, in general, strive to:

  • Maintain a customized profile that stands out
  • Add value with your content (solving your audience’s pain points and challenges)
  • Mix up your content types, with images, videos, infographics and GIFs
  • Add relevant hashtags where appropriate
  • Engage with your audience by tagging them, responding to comments and so on
  • Monitor your brand with social listening tactics
  • Use a social media management tool to schedule your posts, such as Tweetdeck or Hootsuite

Consider paid advertisements

When it comes to paid advertisements on Twitter, you have two types:

  • Promoted tweets, where you pay for a tweet (which acts like any other tweet) to appear to a user who is not already following your account
  • Twitter ads, where you have a goal beyond the promotion of a single tweet.

Types of Twitter ads include (but are not limited to):

  • Follower growth ads
  • Website clicks or conversions
  • App-related promotion
  • Lead generation

Measure your results

This goes back to your S.M.A.R.T. goals. As your strategic efforts get underway on Twitter, you want to regularly check in on your post performance.

How are you performing against your goals? In general, try to resist the draw of “vanity metrics,” such as pure follower number and likes. Keep a closer eye on click-throughs, comments and retweets.

Continue evaluating your goals, your performance and your ROI. Nothing should be “set it and forget it.” Social media is a fast changing industry, and you’ll want to stay ahead of the curve.

Now that you can make your Twitter presence more effective, consider leveling up your digital marketing process. Schedule your free demo of DailyStory today.

Which social media platform is right for your company?

At a time when there are so many social media platforms and businesses know that they need to be relevant online, which platform is best?

The answer isn’t one size fits all. Most importantly, don’t assume that you have to spread out across all platforms. Without a planned strategy and the needed resources, you can do more harm than good by spreading yourself too thin across social media.

Here is a breakdown of each major social media platform, with a few posting tips for each:

YouTube equals billions of hours of videos

Every day, users watch a billion hours of video on YouTube, according to Hootsuite, and it is the 2nd most-visited website in existence, according to Alexa.

In 2018, 73 percent of Americans now use YouTube, according to Hootsuite.

If you’re targeting a younger audience, the top three platforms for teens are now YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat, according to Hootsuite. In fact, Statista says that 96 percent of 18- to 24-year-old American internet users use YouTube.

For companies, YouTube might have a low barrier of entry, but video can be intimidating to jump into.

If you need a little inspiration, check out Lego, which has almost twice as many views as any other brand on YouTube. They put out consistent original content on multiple channels.

But remember that you’re an expert in your field. What are the micro moments that you’re always educating your customers on? Each of those can be a separate YouTube video.

Does your business create a product? Product review videos are huge. In fact, people have watched 50,000 years of product review videos.

For the best chance of being discovered on YouTube, optimize everything for search. Otherwise known as Search Engine Optimization (SEO), think about keywords and phrases that users will search that your video should appear as a result. Then, use them in your caption and title.

Check out our 20 tips to grow your YouTube channel subscribers.

Facebook can’t be ignored

Facebook is one of the largest social media platforms, currently only ranking behind Google and YouTube as most visited website worldwide.

There are over 2.38 billion monthly active users globally as of March 31, 2019, according to the social network, which saw an 8 percent increase year over year.

To put it another way, 63 percent of all Americans used Facebook in 2018, according to Hootsuite.

For mobile specifically, Facebook Messenger is the most downloaded app, followed by the main Facebook app, according to Hootsuite.

Not only are your customers (and potential customers) on Facebook, your competition is likely there as well. For most businesses, Facebook is a good platform to start with.

Dive deeper into the opportunities and challenges of Facebook for small businesses.

As far as posting, the highest traffic on Facebook happens between 1 to 3 p.m., according to Bit.ly.

But a Facebook post at 7 p.m. will result in more clicks on average than posting at 8 p.m., according to Forbes. Engagement also is 18 percent higher on Thursdays and Fridays (as people start thinking about the upcoming weekend), according to Bit.ly.

Learn how to better understand your metrics on Facebook.

So, while you have the ability to reach more people during peak times, increased engagement happens in the evenings (think post-dinner).

Check out our guides to optimize your Facebook business page or Facebook group to help grow your business.

Instagram great for visuals, retail

Instagram is a visual-first sharing social media platform. The audience has grown from 90 million monthly active users in January 2013 to 1 billion monthly active users as of June 2018, according to Hubspot.

It’s a solid No. 3 most-used social media platform in the United States, but it’s important to remember that Instagram is owned by Facebook, which can lead to cross-posting and advertising opportunities.

But more than anything, Instagram is known for its younger audience. About 71 percent of young adults (ages 18 to 24) used Instagram in 2018, compared with 37 percent who did so in 2013, according to the Pew Research Center.

Dive into the opportunities and challenges of Instagram for small businesses.

Retail brands do particularly well on Instagram. Eight of the top 15 most followed brands on Instagram are retail businesses, according to Statista.

With posting, photos showing faces on Instagram get 38 percent more likes than those not showing faces. SproutSocial also reports that images with a single dominant color generate 17 percent more likes than images with multiple dominant colors.

In addition, more negative space and blue (versus red) perform better.

There’s also not a lot of evidence to suggest any particular caption length drives increased engagement. So, shorter isn’t better or worse than longer captions. Focus on the quality instead.

See our six tips to master hashtags on Instagram.

Twitter smaller and more urban

About 326 million people use Twitter every month, according to the platform. This is 9 million fewer than it had in mid-2018, and 4 million fewer than late 2017. The decline is largely being attributed to the purge of spambot accounts.

Nonetheless, Twitter is a smaller social platform, with 24 percent of American internet users on it, according to Statista. The audience also skews more urban than rural.

Dive into the opportunities and challenges of Twitter for small businesses.

The typical half life of a tweet is about 24 minutes. This means that a tweet gets half of its interactions in the first 24 minutes, with the rest slowly coming in over time at a slower rate. Brands tweeted an average of 122 times a month last year, according to Statista.

Learn how to better understand your Twitter metrics.

While Hootsuite says that the best time to tweet is 3 p.m. on weekdays, keep an eye on your analytics. Everyone’s audience can act and engage a little differently. Tweets with GIFs also perform 55 percent better, according to Twitter. Video and images enhance engagement as well, so think about mixing your tweets up and going beyond the text-only tweet.

Check out our eight expert tips to market your business better on Twitter.

Any other social media platforms?

Depending on your business niche, TikTok (a Gen Z video platform), Snapchat (a dynamic messaging platform) and Pinterest (an aspirational idea platform) could have a place in your strategy. However, do your research first, and ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is my targeted audience on this platform?
  • Which brands are successful on this platform?
  • Do I have the time and resources to invest in a niche platform?

Unsure whether to use Instagram, Snapchat or Tiktok to reach a teenage audience? See our guide.

Every social media platform is different, with its own nuances and audiences. As a brand, focus on one first, find your rhythm there and then branch out to the next.

To expand beyond social media in your digital marketing, see our Digital Marketing 101 Guide for Beginners.

Then, consider leveling up your digital marketing with DailyStory. Features include automating various marketing tasks, dynamic audience segmentations and more. Schedule your free demo with us today.

Snapshot: Understanding your metrics on Twitter

It’s far too easy to tweet and never look back at what worked and what didn’t on Twitter.

Be strategic with your Twitter presence and get a leg up on your competition.

In fact, you can dive into both the challenges and opportunities for small businesses on Twitter.

Performance-wise, Twitter Analytics provides a wealth of information that can help you create meaningful tweets that will resonate with your target audience. You can find it by going to the main dropdown menu in the top navigation bar.

Your Twitter audience

Want to know what your followers are interested in, their professions, and what they’re purchasing? Look no further than the audience insights dashboard.

Here, you’ll essentially find an online profile of your follower make-up, including:

  • Interests
  • Occupation
  • Gender
  • Education
  • Marital status
  • Buying style

In the Followers dashboard, you can track how your following has increased over the last 30 days, and also how many new followers you’ve received per day. If you notice a particular day has either gained or lost you several followers, be sure to check what you Tweeted that day to try and determine the cause.

Insights on your specific tweets

Under the Tweets section, you can find a list of all your tweets and the number of impressions. You can see individual tweet performance, as well as recent months or a 28-day overview of cumulative impressions.

You can capitalize on this information by repurposing tweets that gained the most impressions or creating tweets on a similar subject.

Look at the bigger picture

You can also use the Cumulative Overview to compare monthly activity. What did you do differently in a month with higher impressions? Did you tweet more frequently?

Take a look and see how you can recreate months that earned you high impressions.

Similar to impressions, the tweets section also shows your tweet engagement, or the number of interactions your tweet has received, as well as the engagement rate, which is engagements divided by impressions.

If your tweets are receiving little engagement, you may want to rethink your subject matter and format. For instance, you may want to add photo or video to your content mix, which tends to generate more engagement.

Your success on Twitter will ultimately be fueled by the insight you can gain from the data. Don’t shortcut that analysis. It will only help you grow.

For more, Twitter offers a deep-dive look into its analytics feature.

Need help with your overall Twitter marketing strategy? Check out our guide. Not sure if Twitter is right for you? Find out which social media platform is best for your business.

While you’re digging into your Twitter metrics, consider leveling up all of your digital marketing with DailyStory, which features the ability to automate numerous actions, integrate with your existing applications, segment your audience dynamically and more. Find out more about how we can help your business. Schedule a free demo with us today.