Using Facebook and Twitter To Promote Your Business

Here is a selection of blog posts on the two main social media platforms, Facebook and Twitter, and how they can be used to help promote your business.

The Importance of a Good Twitter Name

Dec 3, 2010 

Funny news on Test Match Special just now. Aggers interviewed a woman from Massachusetts who has the Twitter name @theashes. She knew nothing about cricket, but her boyfriend picked the name for her.

Since the 2010 Ashes Series started (cricket competition between England and Australia, held every 2 years, this year its in Australia) she started receiving thousands of followers. She was awoken on the first night when follow announcements and messages started appearing on her mobile phone – literally hundreds every hour.

As a result she has started taking an interest in cricket. What’s more, her followers have decided to club together to get her on a plan to Australia to catch the one of the matches – and she has accepted the invitation.

But the story here for us is that this is once again proof that a good domain name can go a long way still. Although you will struggle to keep a brand or trademark name, something generic that has meaning could win you a lot of followers. Then, you could use this following to promote anything you wanted.

Twitter Follow Management

Mar 7, 2011 

In this post I was just talking about tidying up my Twitter follow list. It is important to keep your account clean, or at least, some social marketing exerts believe that it is! Do not just follow every who follows you.

Decided today to start culling my Twitter follow list. I seem to be following a lot of people that never say anything. On closer inspection many of them stopped tweeting a long time ago. Some had not tweeted since 2008 or 2009. So it was time to cut out the dead wood and bury some old birds.

Unfortunately, this does not seem to be an easy task in Twitter. I was hoping for an option to bulk delete anyone that had not tweeted for X days / month. But the only option is to look at each profile page and then click unfollow. A long and boring process.

Many Spammy Accounts Abandoned

One interesting discovery was that amongst all the good stuff I follow there are many spammy accounts that started out providing good information, and then at some point just tweeted affiliate links and other rubbish, then gave up altogether. I was thinking, is this in itself proof that spamming Twitter does not work? If it did work then I assume that these people would still be tweeting.

Also, many of the sites still going strong are real communities, such as university departments, sports clubs, fitness clubs and other health and fitness professionals. They are providing a good service of tweets, although I admit that I still struggle to really read many of them. Twitter just seems to be too noisy.

Now thinking that maybe I should cut back more, maybe limit myself to 50 high quality Tweeters and leave it at that? Still got about 500 more to cull though.

Auto Posting from a Facebook Page to Twitter

I have been experimenting with this and think I have found a better way to use them. I now have my FB pages connected to a Twitter page, so anything posted FB goes to Twitter. But there’s more!

I found that if you post too little on FB it goes straight to Twitter with no link back. So I always post enough to ensure Twitter readers get a link to read more. This means more traffic (readers) to my FB page. I do not know how many words / characters is needed, not bothered trying to work that out. Just write “enough”. I guess more than 140 characters will do it (the Twitter limit).

Also, if you add a website link to your FB post, then that link appears on Twitter (shortened) and you lose your FB visitors (probably OK if linking to your own site, but if talking about news etc, you lose chance of discussion). So now if I wish to share some news, I write a fair sized paragraph in FB and post it to the Page wall. I then follow that up with a link to the news article as a comment below. This means that on Twitter people will see a snippet of my description of the news, follow the link to FB where they can then “Like” and comment on the news.

This increases people visiting my FB page, increases fans and likes (shares) and increasing discussion. I am still linking to the source of the material so the integrity of the Internet (iting news without linking is just wrong!) is still in place.

A simple but effective way to use Facebook and Twitter, without having to keep repeating yourself on both platforms. or losing your readers to other sites!

Bing Show Twitter Updates in Search Results

Jul 3, 2009

Since publishing this Google started showing new Tweets on its search pages too, although that service seems to have stopped. Twitter accounts do appear in the SERPs though.

Bing is taking its battle with the mighty Google seriously. When Bing was first launched people thought that it was simply a rebranding of the old Microsfot Search Engine. But they have bigger plans in the pipeline, and are looking at ways to get fresh content that Google has yet to do themselves. But will it be enough to really cause a stir and win some of business from Google?

“Bing will initially display Twitter feed entries, or Tweets, from prominent users of the social-networking site, Microsoft said yesterday in a blog posting. Users who search for names like Al Gore along with the word Twitter will get the former vice president’s latest Tweets and a link to see more.”

Source: Bloomberg Technology News

How Twitter Can Mess Up Your Marketing Campaigns!

Or more specifically, how a wayward, drunken Tweet can backfire!

Axl Rose’s Cheeky Tweet or Serious Problem?

Aug 16, 2010

Axl Rose, frontman of Guns ‘n’ Roses, updated his Twtter page late last night with the following:

“All upcoming Guns N’ Roses dates are officially cancelled. Please contact your place of purchase for any refunds.”

At the moment nobody knows any more. His tour is currently in central America, so he is either being very cheeky and causing panic for his fans, or there is a serious problem. He next tour dates are in the UK, with Reading, Leeds and Belfast at the end of August. The band then returns for a London gig at the o2 on the 13th October, followed by Birmingham and Manchester.

His Twitter page has 65,845 followers at the moment, and he follows nobody. Looks like he is making good use of Twitter to speak directly to his fans without having to get managers and PR people involved. Good work Axl – just don’t write on it when drunk! Over at Planet Rock they are wondering if his Twitter account was hijacked by Slash! (he’s the original Guns n’ Roses guitarist for you youngsters).

TwitLonger.com – Speaks More On Twitter

An interesting discovery. All of Axl Rose’s Tweets have a link, and that links leads to a website called TwitLonger.com. This is an independant website that allows you to sign up and write a longer entry, like a blog post, which will then send a Tweet to your profile. A clever way to make money from Twitter. They host the blogs and place Google Adsense averts beneath each post.

If you want to do this on your own, you can get WordPress blogs to updated Twitter automatically. If you want to learn this just ask me and I will write a post on it. It is very simple.

The Limitations of Twitter

twitter over capacity

Like any tool, it is prone to collapse. Also, there is no guarantee that it will be around forever either. So do not put all your eggs in once basket! Here are a couple of errors that we have experienced in our relatively short time on Twitter.

Nov 24, 2009

Today Twitter was full. Just an error message saying that there were too many people tweeting and a request to try again later. Twitter is now HUGE. Are its servers big enough for further expansion? Not really sure what their image represents on this page. Tweeting birds carrying a whale. Hmmmm.

Another DNS Attack on Twitter

Aug 15, 2009

Cannot access Twitter again today. Last week there was reports of a DNS attack on Twitter, maybe it is happening again. Currently just getting a server error for the site.

HTTP Server Error 503
No available server to handle this request

More soon.

A Twitter Case Study: How Google Utilise Twitter

Google are a great example of how to use Twitter to connect with your client base. You may be surprised at the number of Twitter accounts that Google has. If in doubt about good practice to use on Twitter, look at how they use it, how they update the community and respond to questions. Here is a full listing of Google’s Twitter pages:

twitter.com/Google – our central account
twitter.com/Blogger – for Blogger fans
twitter.com/GoogleCalendar – user tips & updates
twitter.com/GoogleImages – news, tips, tricks on our visual image search
twitter.com/GoogleNews – latest headlines via Google News
twitter.com/GoogleReader – from our feed reader team
twitter.com/iGoogle – news & notes from Google’s personalized homepage
twitter.com/GoogleStudents – news of interest to students using Google
twitter.com/YouTube – for YouTube fans
twitter.com/GoogleAtWork – solutions for IT and workplace productivity

Geo-related
twitter.com/SketchUp – Google SketchUp news
twitter.com/3DWH – SketchUp’s 3D Warehouse
twitter.com/Modelyourtown – 3D modeling to build your favorite places
twitter.com/EarthOutreach – Earth & Maps tools for nonprofits & orgs
twitter.com/GoogleMaps – uses, tips, mashups

Ads-related 
twitter.com/AdSense – for online publishers
twitter.com/GoogleAnalytics – insights for website effectiveness
twitter.com/GoogleAdBuilder – re building display ads
twitter.com/GoogleRetail – for retail advertisers
twitter.com/TechnologyUK – for U.K. tech advertisers
twitter.com/InsideAdWordsDE – for German AdWords customers
twitter.com/GoogleAgencyDE – for German ad agencies
twitter.com/AdSensePT – info for Portuguese-language publishers
twitter.com/AdWordsRussia – AdWords news & tips in Russian
twitter.com/DentroDeAdWords – Spanish updates from the Inside AdWords blog
twitter.com/AdWordsAPI – AdWords API tips

Developer & technical 
twitter.com/GoogleResearch – from our research scientists
twitter.com/GoogleWMC – Google Webmaster Central
twitter.com/GoogleCode – latest updates for Google developer products
twitter.com/GoogleData – Data APIs provide a standard protocol for reading and writing web data
twitter.com/app_engine – web apps run on Google infrastructure
twitter.com/DataLiberation – our initiative for complete import/export of all data
twitter.com/GoogleMapsAPI – about using Google Maps embedded in websites
twitter.com/GoogleIO – Google’s largest annual developer event

Culture, People 
twitter.com/googletalks – notes from our @Google speaker series
twitter.com/googlejobs – the voice of Google recruiters

Country or Region 
twitter.com/googlearabia – news from the Google Arabia Blog

twitter.com/googledownunder – Google activities in Australia & New Zealand
twitter.com/GoogleDE – Google in Germany
twitter.com/GoogleKorea – News & notes in Korean

twitter.com/GoogleLatAm – Latin America (en Espanol)
twitter.com/GooglePolicyIt – Notes on Google policy issues in Italy

Next time you have a Google problem, or want to know the latest information on one of their products, see if they have been Tweeting about it first.

  2 comments for “Using Facebook and Twitter To Promote Your Business

  1. December 28, 2011 at 4:29 am

    Hey Jon

    I like the idea of making your posts long enough that it forces the link back to your FB page.

    I’ve resisted linking the FB and Twitter so far because I follow people who have their Tweets posted on FB which I found repetitive. But the opposite which you’re doing makes more sense.

  2. Webologist
    December 28, 2011 at 4:06 pm

    Yeah, I have friends who post to Twitter and these are posted to their personal FB wall. This is confusing, mostly because they do not then check replies on the FB wall. This method is designed to win some new Facebook fans, which I think is more valuable that Twitter followers.

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