Look at your website traffic stats after you tweet. Chances are you’ll find that when you post on Twitter, the result is a spike in traffic. There’s a definite link between the two, but it doesn’t have to be a random or occasional thing. You can use Twitter to generate regular, reliable, targeted website traffic.
Here’s how you can start harnessing the power of 140 characters to grow your website and your business:
1. Grow Your Followers
This is a no brainer. The more people that follow you, the more who have potential to see your tweets, and the more traffic you’re likely to generate. The best way to get more followers is to follow more people, so start following industry organizations, local business, local celebrities and other people who have the kinds of followers you want to attract.
2. Tweak Your Profile Page
Your Twitter profile has some great marketing possibilities. Your avatar image is the perfect place to put your logo, to grow brand awareness. Your banner image is a great place to publicize what you do, and even better, to publicize special offers, contests or deals. The description on your profile page is a great place to add a call to action too, and don’t forget a link to a targeted landing page that includes a subscription form!
3. Back Off the Hard Sell
It’s tempting to use your Twitter feed to post endless hard sell messages… but it doesn’t work!
In fact, the best way to get more engagement and conversions from Twitter is not to post sales messages. Instead, post links to interesting content, including some content that’s relevant, but on non-competing sites.
Occasionally, mix in a Tweet to a link for a download that has an email gate, then go back to useful, non-sales related information. Think of a 10-4-1 type of rule. 10 Tweets that add value, 4 that point to information on your website specifically, and 1 that is fully lead capture.
4. Ask Questions
Twitter works best when you don’t spend all your time telling your followers what you want them to hear. Mix it up by asking questions or running polls. The best effects from Twitter come from engaged followers. Engaged followers happen when your feed is a conversation!
5. Time It Right
Study after study has shown that when you tweet has as much impact on your results as what you share. There are reports that will tell you when the best average time to tweet, but the best thing to do is track your own results, with your own followers.
Spend some time tracking results. See when you get the most retweets and replies, and when your tweets result in the biggest traffic spikes. Measure when you get the most subscriptions to your email list. Then use that data to develop a Twitter plan that is timed for maximum results.
6. Don’t Forget Images
When it comes to Twitter, tweets with images get more engagement, every time. Make sure you tweet images that are copyright free, or created for your site or blog, and make sure they’re relevant to the post.
7. Use Promoted Posts
Twitter’s promoted posts are the equivalent of AdWords or Facebook ads, but for Twitter. You can choose the region and audience, and your tweets magically appear in their feeds. Yes, you have to pay for the service, but there’s no price tag that you can put on reaching exactly the kind of customer you want! Make sure you save promoted posts for after you’ve done your research and testing, so you send the right message to the right people, at the right time.
8. Run Sweepstakes or Contests on Twitter
Everyone loves free stuff. Everyone loves to win. They love it even more on the internet!Everyone loves free stuff. Everyone loves to win. They love it even more on the internet!Click To Tweet
Create a contest you publicize on Twitter, that sends entrants to a specific entry page on your website, where their email address buys them entry. Make sure you include a checkbox and a link to your Terms and Conditions and let them know that they’re opting into your mailing list by entering!
9. Use Pinned Posts
Finally, if you want to get more bang for your buck out of Twitter, leverage the pinned post function to keep your most relevant offers and deals at the very top of your tweets on your profile page. Anyone who clicks through to your profile will see it, and that might get more interest in your site!
Twitter is a great tool for marketers. It’s easy to add some automation, using tools, some of which are free. Even moderate effort on Twitter will yield results in your traffic. But if you put some effort in, you can turn general interest in Twitter into substantial website results!
The key is to have a cohesive strategy and a plan for what happens when they come to your website. Your lead capture tools on your site need to be sound to make the efforts on Twitter worthwhile in driving the social lead to your website!
Mike Gingerich is President of Digital Hill Multimedia (www.DigitalHill.com), a Goshen web design and marketing agency. He is also a co-founder of TabSite.com and Waftio.com, leading software tools for contests and lead capture, and author of the book Game Plan for Social Media Lead Generation. Find out more at www.MikeGingerich.com/book.