How To Create Your Business Twitter Page

This is the second in a series of How-To articles that I’ll be working on over the next several weeks targeting Small Business Owners and Solopreneurs that are just getting started with their social media.  The first one was about setting up your Business Facebook Page…read about that here.

Alright, now on to setting up your Twitter account for business.  First thing you need to do is decide whether or not you want to use your personal name or your business name.  Alternatively, you can set up both and share tweets to gain more exposure.  Here is a good article about it to help you make your decision.  Be sure to pay particular attention to the Business/Personal Hybrid Account description.  Now, in all fairness, I was not a tweeter until I started my business, so I set up my account @drgnflysocial and also used my personal name so that when people search, whether using my personal or business name, I show up.  One thing to remember:  the more Twitter accounts you have, the more work it is which is why I did it as described above since I’m also managing personal Facebook and LinkedIn accounts as well as social media for my clients (yes, phew!)

Ok, let’s get started!  To show you step-by-step how to do this I started a ‘new’ business page which I then deleted because, of course, mine’s already going strong after just a couple of short months.

Go to Twitter and enter your information to sign up:

Twitter Sign Up

Next you’ll be taken to this page:

Twitter Sign Up 2

Some tips to think about when creating your Twitter name…because once it’s set, that’s it:

  • Your handle (name) is limited to a max of 15 characters
  • Unless they’re a part of your business name, don’t use numbers, symbols (especially underscores), or weird abbreviations…makes it hard to find you (let alone remember), especially for the ever growing mobile user population!
  • While Twitter will save your name exactly as you enter it, it is not case sensitive.  So, say I wanted to have my handle as @DragonflyMktg…it would be saved and listed as such, but Tweeters can still find me by entering @dragonflymktg.  Do whatever you want with that…it’s a personal preference thing.

Also, please note the selection box (which is automatically selected when you get to this page) about tailoring Twitter based on recent website visits.  Click the blue ‘Learn More’ to find out detailed information about what this means and decide if that’s something you want to do.  You’ll notice that I unselected this option.

Ok, now you’ll be taken through a series of six screens to set up your account.  The first one shown below just explains what’s going to happen:

Twitter Sign Up 3

The second screen is asking about your interests…pick one or all, and once you click ‘Continue’ you’ll be provided with Tweeters to follow:

Twitter Sign Up 4

Given that the choices are primarily NOT business related, I just selected the first one to move forward with the process and was taken to the following screen:

Twitter Sign Up 5

Yes, you read that right…you need to follow 39 to continue!  Don’t worry, even though, if you’re like me and was frustrated by following Tweeters that I wouldn’t normally seek out, you can ‘un-follow’ them (if you want to) once you’ve finalized set up.  So, to save some time, just simply click the blue ‘Follow 39 & continue’ button.

Now you’re on to the next step in customizing your profile.  At this point they’re asking you to upload your profile picture which needs to be 400 x 400 pixels (shown as 200 x 200 pixels) and can only be 100kb in size.

Twitter Sign Up 6

I chose to skip this step knowing that I’d be customizing my header and picture once set up was complete.  Alternatively, you can simply upload your profile picture now if you have one ready to go…your choice.

In step 5 below, you’re being asked if you want to import your contacts so you can follow folks you already know who have Twitter accounts.  The options listed below are for online e-mail providers/accounts, so if you use one of the choices shown, by all means select yours and import.  I however do not, so again, I chose to ‘Skip this step’.

Twitter Sign Up 7

Ok, you’re finished with Twitters’ first steps and now you’re here:

Twitter Sign Up 8

See the big gold bar at the top of the screen?  You need to confirm your email address to move forward so if you haven’t already done so, go to the email you should have received from Twitter and click the blue ‘Confirm Now’ button (if you don’t see it, check your junk mail folder before clicking the ‘Resend confirmation’ button).  Now you’ll be directed to your Twitter home feed and see a subtle white confirmation thanks at the top of your screen:

Twitter Sign Up 9

Just click the ‘X’ of the confirmation thanks and then click on your name in black near the top left of the screen to be taken to your profile page:

Twitter Sign Up 10

Now you’ll see your profile page…click ‘Edit profile’:

Twitter Sign Up 11

And now you’ll be taken to where you can upload your header and profile images, add your bio, location and website addy:

Twitter Sign Up 12

For your bio section you only have 160 characters to grab potential followers’ attention…so spend some time working on that.  Make it short and captivating and totally YOU!

Next, enter your location and website (or blog) address.  Alright…here’s the fun part…you can create your very own custom Twitter header!  Click Twitter Header Photo Template courtesy of Dragonfly Social Marketing to get the PowerPoint template and guide (remember to click ‘Save As’ to save it to your hard drive; if you just click open, you’ll be able to see what the document is but it won’t be an operational file):

Twitter PowerPoint Template

Here’s what my real Twitter profile page looks like using the custom header template:

Twitter Sign Up 13

Alright…now you’re officially ready to start tweeting!  Tweet about your new Twitter page, what’s happening with your business, links to blog articles…anything relating to why you’re in business and what it’s all about 😉  You also can (and should) do searches to find other Tweeters to follow that have relevance so that you can retweet their tweets (as long as it’s in line with your objectives).

You’ll be amazed at how quickly your following grows as you find other tweeters you like and follow them and retweet their stuff…I sure was!  Remember…the key factor here is to tweet quality stuff…if all you do is try to sell yourself or retweet others’ pitchy tweets, folks will soon un-follow.  Food for thought.

So, have fun and stay tuned for the next installment in my How-To series…you can even sign up for emails (bottom of the page) so that you get notified as soon as it goes live!

Happy Tweeting

2014 Social Marketing Predictions…Did They Come True?

I wrote this great article (if I do say so myself 😉 ) for About.com’s Operations & Technology site for their Social Media section.  It’s something, at the closing of 2014, that made me wonder…with all of the predictions that come out at the close and beginning of each year, does anyone really know how the predictions actually fared from the previous year?  Well, I decided to find out and came across this fabulous infographic that hit home.  Someone else had wondered the same thing!  As I was looking it over, I digested.  I learned.  And then I wrote!

Here’s the article so that you can learn what I learned too…with some helpful tips along the way so that you can revise your campaigns accordingly:

http://operationstech.about.com/od/Blog/fl/Did-Last-Years-2014-Social-Marketing-Predictions-Come-True.htm

Get In Touch With Santa…For the Kiddos

I know, I know, this has nothing to do with social marketing per se…however, I am a Mom and Santa’s coming soon and I can’t get Spongebob singing, “Santa’s coming tonight, tonight; Santa’s coming tonight,” OUT OF MY HEAD!

Yes, IT IS as annoying as the video I’ve included and no, I couldn’t be so lucky as to have, say, White Christmas (sung by Bing Crosby of course) playing in my head, no sirree.  So, to try and drown Spongebob out I thought I’d put together the different ways kids can get in touch with Santa, ranging from old school (writing a letter and mailing it…gasp!) to slightly more modern options.

Pick Up The Phone

Before Christmas, kids can call (951) 262 – 3062 and hear a recorded message from Santa asking for their wish list and telling them to be good…and especially to listen to their parents.  They have the option of leaving a message for Santa about what they want this year.

After Christmas, like literally the day after, they can call (855) 34 – SANTA and hear a recorded message from the jolly red guy thanking them for leaving out cookies and carrots for the reindeer.  Again, there’s an option to leave a message.

***Please note, Santa will not return phone calls and you should call the numbers yourself first so you know what’s being said.***

Work On Typing Skills

If you go to this website, there’s a gold Christmas ornament ball where your kids can input their name and click to email Santa!  It’s basically a form letter about what town/country they live in, what they’d like for Christmas, etc.  There’s also a section where they can ‘ad-lib’ so-to-speak.  Great for emerging typers and those who don’t like to write.  Bonus:  Santa will email back!

Even if your kids don’t want to email Santa, there are a lot of fun things on emailsanta.com like daily jokes, Christmas Countdown, Present Counter, Santa’s Blog, etc.  It worth checking out, especially for the younger ones.

Write It Out

Finally, you can do it old school, stamps and all, and write to Santa.  The Santa Claus Museum can hook you up.  Here’s the address:

Santa Claus

PO Box 1

Santa Claus, IN 47579

When writing the letter, be sure to include a legible return name/address because Santa writes back…FOR FREE!!!  The only caveat is that the letter to Santa needs to be received by December 20th…so get writing!

If you’d like a ‘form letter’ for your kids to fill out, the website provides one for you.  And, since everything is free, they welcome donations to help cover postage 😉

Ok, now I’m happy and blissfully my head is now filled with…

Welcome!

Welcome to Dragonfly Social Marketing…I am so very excited to make what has been a long-standing passion of mine an *official* business!  Part of that business is this blog, which will have all sorts of hints, tips, tricks, how-tos (and so-on and so-on 😉 ) about social media and small business.  I have spent more years that I care to count helping others maximize their minute marketing budgets (and no, most of them didn’t even have it as a line item!) and becoming stars of their social media platforms.  I now want to share what I’ve learned (and continue to) with you.

So, keep checking in to see what’s new…I’m already working on new posts!