If you run an e-commerce website Twitter can be a great way to drive additional sales, though it must be approached in the right way to ensure it is effective.
Ideally you would start with your Business Strategy, which would contain a Marketing Strategy. Within this you would have a Digital Strategy to which would be aligned your Social Media Strategy. But lets face it, although this is the right way to approach your business, what you are really concerned about is how to use the individual elements.
Small businesses often grow dynamically and time spent planning in too much detail can lead to procrastination and a lack of action. So you just want to know how to use Twitter for best effect. The steps below outline 2 tactics, that when combined offer a simple but effective Twitter Strategy.
1. Google Analytics
As the owner of an e-commerce website I am sure you have Google Analytics installed, yes? This is key because eventually you are going to want to track results and check that the time you are spending on Twitter is resulting in sales and not going to waste.
If Google Analytics is not in place install it, or get your web developer to do it for you.
2. What Problem Or Problems Do Your Products Solve?
Now we need to understand what solution your product provides. Understanding this will help you identify people that have this problem and present them with a solution, your product. Make a list of these problems, as many as you can think of.
All products solve a problem whether it is a TV with a larger screen that provides a more cinematic effect for your movies, or a pair of trainers which help prevent over pronation
3. What Is The Solution To Each Problem?
Take each problem and write a solution, be honest, open, accurate and don’t try to sell your product. 300-500 words describing each solution will be plenty. Illustrate them where you can and keep your writing succinct and easy to read.
Can’t write or afford to hire a copy writer? Try audio, record yourself explaining the solution and upload it to Soundcloud or better still video uploaded to YouTube. Most modern smartphones are capable of recording decent audio or video, which will to get you started.
4. Publish The Solutions On Your Website
If you run an e-commerce website I assume you are able to add new content, and if not, ask your web developer to do it for you. Try to arrange your content into relevant categories and have each article on it’s own page. For written content this will help with your search engine optimisation as much as it will with Twitter. If using Soundcloud or YouTube, both websites provide you with a piece of code you can copy and paste into your webpages to display a player. Add some introductory text and you are ready to go.
5. Search For People Asking Relevant Questions
My preferred social media management tool is Hootsuite but you can also use the Twitter website itself for this stage.
Take your problems from step 2 and construct short phrases that someone might type into a search engine or Twitter.
For example if your problem is, “which are the best running shoes for over pronation?” a possible phrase to use might be:
“over pronation” ? -http -www
We have shortened the question because of the potential variations in how the question could be typed. It is important the phrase is in quotes so the words appear in this order. The question mark means “return only questions” and the -http & -www get rid of most of the links where other retailers may be promoting their products.
The results below are shown using Hootsuite](http://hootsuite.com/p_8200):
6. Provide The Answer
Now all you need do is look for people asking relevant questions and send them a link to the appropriate answer on your website. You can even save these searches so you don’t need to type them in each time.
Amend and add searches as necessary keeping an eye for new questions every day.
IMPORTANT: Construct your links using the Google URL Builder as this will mean you are able to track any sales or visits resulting from your activity.
7. Demonstrate Your Authority
In addition to proactively answering potential customer questions it is a good idea to be seen to share relevant information relating to your industry, known as content curation. In this way you can make a name for yourself as an authority in your market sector, and in turn it can lead to people trusting you and asking your advice in the future.
There is much more you can do with Twitter and the ideas above can be applied to other platforms, but this simple Twitter Strategy should be enough to enable you to see whether it is worth investing further time and effort.
If you do give this a try please let me know how you get on in the comments below.