I was flipping through ESPN the magazine last night when I was reminded of a disturbing trend. Aaron Curry of the Seattle Seahawks has a Twitter handle of @SeaHawk59. What is worse is Stephen Curry, a soon to be drafted NBA player, has a handle of @classof2027. My question to both would be, how are people supposed to find you if they actually wanted to follow you? How is Google supposed to attach your Twitter feed to your search rankings? As it stands now, when you Google “Stephen Curry” his Twitter address does not appear within the first 50 search results. I gave up after 5 clicks on the next tab. Not good, and certainly not good for his Twitter presence. A SEO nightmare by his own creation!
This got me thinking about how companies can utilize Twitter more efficiently. Really the same way athletes should, but don’t! An athlete’s name is not their brand due to free agency. Sales is nothing more than real world free agency. With that in mind-I have compiled a list of Twitter best practices with an eye on maximizing your companies brand on Twitter, and ultimately driving brand awareness and affinity:
- Twitter users are 37% more likely to be followed when they spell out their full name instead of attaching their brand to their username. With that data in hand, I suggest that your company have one corporate username and all other employees make their user name an extension of the company’s brand. This will allow your company to be able to speak to all business avenues -instead of being pigeon-holed based on his/her username.
- Every piece of content created in blogs, Youtube, Flickr, deep discussions, new events- need to be shared on Twitter. We suggest connecting Friendfeed to the corporate Twitter account.
- I suggest your company share tidbits of knowledge daily. At least 10 twitter posts per day using keywords from a yet to be established keyword list. 60% should be of the thought leadership variety, while 40% of the posts should talk about the Twitter personality’s life. The corporate account should be purely talking about company happenings and posting links for “link juice”, while responding to mentions. Always post an opinion on industry specific news.
- I suggest creating a template thank you note for every new follower. This template will link to the company’s website and be accompanied by a thank you with a clear call to action.
- I suggest your company closely monitors the Twitter members that are talking about the organization on http://www.search.twitter.com. Track the results by simply copying the RSS feed of the results and placing it in an RSS reader.
- Your organization should comment on other posts of interest as much as time allows. This opens up free flowing conversations. The organization can track these conversations by keyword and put the RSS feeds into a Netvibes to follow effectively.
- One Corporate Account (example @authoritydomain)- At least 10 Tweets a day (60% business/40% casual & fun- be a human) Attach a trending term: Example #authoritydomains. If you are a Mets fan: #Mets
- Numerous Individual Twitter accounts–For example put http://www.authoritydomains.com in the BIO, spell out full name (example: @derekshowerman). Shot for 10 Tweets a day, 60% business/40% casual & fun- be a human!
- Follow other Twitter folks who mention your business on http://search.twitter.com
- Thank every follower and have a clear call to action.
Please be sure to engage social media with an eye on fulfilling real business objectives and a roadmap to see real ROI. Please let me know if you have any questions.