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How SMBs can use Twitter to effectively target customers

Social media has become a big platform for small and medium businesses to make an impact with their customer audience.

While Facebook is proving especially popular, New Zealand businesses are a bit more conservative when it comes to advertising via Twitter.

Having launched in 21 new markets in the last year, Twitter announced in November that small and medium-sized businesses in New Zealand will have access to Twitter Ads, opening up a new avenue for businesses to explore, enabling them to target and connect to other audiences. New Zealand was one of six new markets to gain access to the service at that time.

Twitter Ads were also be launched in Singapore, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark.

Access to Twitter ads allows New Zealand businesses to build tailor-made campaigns to suit their budget and meet objectives and business goals.

“With sophisticated measurement and targeting tools meeting a variety of KPIs, New Zealand companies can creatively engage audiences home and away, with a number of tools and services to build brand awareness or drive direct response actions such as leads, sales, videos views and website traffic,” the social media platforms says.

The recent rollout of objective-based campaigns and pricing has also expanded the opportunities with Twitter Ads, enabling SMBs to only pay for actions that align with their marketing objectives, ensuring that their campaigns drive the highest possible ROI.

Twitter has put together some steps to help New Zealand SMBs use Twitter effectively.

1.       Select advertising tools – whether the business needs more followers, or website clicks and conversions, select the tool that best suits your needs.

2.      Create content – give users a compelling reason to follow or engage with your brand on Twitter. Be creative and think outside the box!

3.      Define audience – audience targeting can be based on interests or passions, users who are similar to followers of specific accounts, or even tailored audiences based on your own CRM lists.

4.      Set budget – Twitter Ads can work for just about any budget. Set a daily and total budget for your campaign. Your campaign will end once your budget has been met, so you’ll never be charged more than you want to pay. Twitter Ads works on an auction model. This means that you’re bidding on access to your target audience. When you win the auction, you’ll only pay slightly more than the next highest bidder.

5.      Measure campaigns – Take advantage of Twitter’s real-time analytics to find data-driven insights that you can use to grow your business

To help NZ businesses make the most of Twitter ads, here are some top tips in using the platform:

1. Find your voice - Don’t be afraid to let your personality come through, or that of your employees. Of course, business styles vary so you need to find a tone that works for your business and your customers.

2. Monitor - Research the conversation happening on Twitter around your company, your products and your competitors.

3. Engage - Use Twitter to convey insights and information about your company that your customers can’t find elsewhere. Ask your followers questions and listen for constructive comments.

4. Respond - Reply when people tweet about you. Favourite and retweet positive messages, and thank those who are supporting you. Don’t ignore Tweets just because they are critical - addresses issues if possible and look for valuable feedback to incorporate. Some conversations need to be taken offline.

5. Keep it fresh and timely - The real time nature of Twitter creates a short shelf life for content so Tweet often and about relevant topics. Try to engage with trends and hashtags that fit with your company.

6. Offer value in your Tweets - Value can mean different things to different people. For some it’s knowledgeable information or witty observations, for others it’s competitions and special offers. Find out what your audience likes and tailor your Tweets. Not everything has to be about your products or company.

7. Tweet something sharable - People engage more with interesting content, include a photo, ask a question, share a Vine.

8. Amplify your message - Once you’ve established your presence on Twitter, Promoted Products can help you grow followers and reach more customers. Our suite of ad services helps you reach more of the right people to build your community, share your voice, bring old customers back and new people in the door.