Managing Your Brand 140 Characters at a Time

This guest post is contributed by Angelita Williams, who writes on the topics of online courses.  She welcomes your comments at her email Id: angelita.williams7 @gmail.com.

TwitterAs I write this, my Twitter timeline is updating in the browser on the other computer screen. I’m getting Tweets in real time from all of the users I follow, and I’m clicking between mentions, my saved searches, and any reTweets of my own Tweets. Sometimes I’ll Tweet something clever, but mostly I’m just watching the world move along. I’m essentially managing my personal brand all within the new and very convenient dashboard that Twitter recently released.

The thing to know about Twitter is that it’s more than a site that aggregates what people are eating for lunch or how many times they’ve sneezed in the last thirty seconds. Certainly there’s that aspect of it, which I really do enjoy for its quirky nature, but there’s also a vast resource within the community of Twitter users that can be of tremendous help to your brand. And, obviously, there are also a great number of potential clients out there on Twitter as well. Your task as someone interested in using Twitter for marketing purposes is to juggle how you will present your brand in the Twittersphere.

First, you’ll want to locate yourself in a community. Remember how I said that Twitter is a vast resource? Well, tap into that resource by searching out other users in your market and follow them. You won’t automatically get followed back, but that’s okay for now. What you will be doing is aligning yourself with other brands, thus adding to your own brand’s credibility and appearance to others. Be careful about what other users you follow. Likewise, be careful about allowing users to follow you: keep your followers clean of spambots, as nothing says you don’t care about your brand more than allowing spambots to follow you.

Because Twitter is timeline-based, many users will initially see your Tweets alongside many other 140 character updates. Because of this, you’ll want to find a way to make your Tweets stand out above the rest to inspire interest in your brand. You can do this with some of those weird personal tweets, but remember that these can sometimes be alienating to users. Or you can do this by asking a question that somehow relates to your brand, thus generating hype among interested users.

Once you’ve gained a bunch of followers, your next task will be to manage your brand on Twitter for the long-term. Shift how you think about your Tweets. They are no longer individual transmissions into the unknown, but rather a collection of words and ideas about you and your brand that will change over time. With long-term goals in mind, you can work to balance the weird personal Tweets with more professional marketing Tweets as well as Tweets that interact with your community of followers, thus tapping into that resource. For example, if you have a question about something related to your niche, ask your followers. You’ll be seen as someone interested in collaborating with others, and you’ll also get an answer to your question.

Thank you to Angelita for her guest post! If you are interested in writing a guest post to appear on the eMarketing & New Media Blog, feel free to send an email to me, Erica, so we can discuss a potential topic. Thanks again, Angelita!

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