Social Media for Small Business- Part 3- How to Use Twitter For Business Continued

After yesterday’s post intro on How to Use Twitter for Business, I wanted to finish explaining the Twitter platform.

I will follow up with adding a custom background, finding people to follow, getting followers, and what to tweet (when, etc) and retweets, where to find hashtags.

I sometimes forget how much there is to know about social media platforms, so please ask any questions you have in the comments. So, let’s get started!

How to Use Twitter for Business Continued-

I will cover:

  • What hashtags to use
  • Using a custom Twitter background
  • Finding people to follow
  • Getting followers
  • What to tweet and when
  • Retweets
  • Listening Campaign

What Hashtags to Use In Your Tweets

We covered hashtags pretty extensively yesterday, but I didn’t cover how to decide what hashtags to use. I have a couple of suggestions for this:

  • Use what makes the most sense- Twitter suggests using hashtags like you are choosing a topic to file the tweet under
  • Search twitter to find your hashtags before you use them- in the search box at the top of Twitter’s site, type in a keyword for your business, and then look at results, you should see related and often used hashtags.
  • Use tagdef to find out what a hashtag means and what hashtag to use when tweeting


Custom Twitter Background

You’ve see twitter accounts with really nice backgrounds, right? They make you wish you had one, and looked that professional. Well, now you can be. All you need is a simple to use editing tool, like and you can have your own background.

Follow these steps:

Visit and select ‘create a new image’

  • Put in 200 by 600 for the image size
  • Grab the paint bucket in the toolbar and fill up your new image with a background color. Keep track of this exact color, because you will want to use it on your twitter profile as well, as the background color.
  • Remember or write down the color you are going to use, because when you fill in your design at Twitter it will have a place for it.
  • Use the text tool to add your business name, website link, tagline, etc.
  • If you want to get advanced, add your logo and icons


Finding People to Follow on Twitter

We’ve talked about the search function on Twitter a few times now, and you are going to use it to find people to follow. You are going to want to follow people that you want to see what they have to share. I would start by putting in a hashtag related to your industry, but you can put in a keyword, too.

In the results you will see the following. Click where it says People- these are the people who talk about your keyword, or have your hashtag in their bio.


You will see a list of people, their bios and the button to follow them.

But before you start following too many people, I want to discuss Lists, because it is much easier to do it now, than to go back later and split everyone up.

Lists of Followers on Twitter

The list features lets you split people up, so that you can logon and see people under different topics. For instance, I have lists of people in Social media, Jobs, Cloth Diapers (don’t ask), Bloggers, Friends.

I can select the list I want to look at and only those people will show in my feed. It’s a great feature that you can use to check on certain topics without getting overwhelmed from your twitter feed.

Twitter Lists on Video

I made a video on how to access Lists on Twitter and then how to add a person to a list. This is one of my first videos and again, no audio. I’m having trouble with the mic. Comment below to tell me what you think.

Getting Follows on Twitter

The nice thing about Twitter is a lot of people will follow you just for following them. Just by starting to follow people you will get followers. I suggest doing a few hundred, and you will see about 15% of them automatically follow back.

More Ideas on Getting Followers:

  • Email your list with your new twitter link (a link to your profile), the link will look like this:
  • Add your twitter button to the TOP of your website (you want people to actually see it), get your Twitter buttons here.
  • Cross promote to your other social media profiles- ask them to follow you on Twitter
  • Ask friends to mention you in their tweets
  • Put out a blog post on being active on Twitter

What To Tweet

Most people use Twitter as a bulletin board of things they want to share. This is a mistake, it is far better to use it as a place to share things that will interest your followers, and more importantly, use it as a place to find conversation, and build relationships. Therefore, please do not just post your links and titles, add comments to them, ask questions, share other peoples tweets, etc.

Here is a good formula for a post, it was researched by Buddy Media and they found that using 2 hashtags was the most engaging tweet.

Comment and mentions, Link (if you have one), 2 hashtags

When to Tweet

I have put together a Twitter and Facebook schedule for managing your accounts, this will make it much easier for you to stay active on social media and still run your business.


A retweet is similar to a share on Facebook or a forward on email. You hit Retweet and Twitter simply copies the tweet and shares it under your account, so all of your followers will see it. You will often see a Retweet in your feed of someone you don’t even follow, because someone you do follow retweeted their tweet. It brings more awareness to the tweet, gets more clicks if there is a link, etc.

Ask for retweets- You don’t want to do this with every tweet, but when you have something newsworthy or share worthy, add Retweet to the end of your tweet. Buddy Media reported that it was best to type out the full word Retweet, but you will often see people use RT. Either way they are asking you to retweet, you can or not, it is up to you, think more about your followers than anything else.

Listening Campaigns-

Last but not least I want to tell you to consider adding a listening campaign to your Twitter business activities. I have already written about this, on a recent post. But you can click here and it will open in another window, so you can finish this post first.

Twitter is always growing and is constantly changing to add in new features. They have added photos, and are working with developers to give people like us more flexibility with the platform. You should definitely take some time to set it up, and managing it can be very simple. If you have any questions, please ask in comments orĀ contact me. Thank you for reading and if you find it useful, please share!!

Update: is another great place to find what hashtag to use- thank you for the link!

Other Posts in this Series:

Part 1- What is Social Media?

Part 2- How to use Twitter for Business Intro

© 2012 – 2014, Social Media Consultant. All rights reserved.

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