How to Effectively Manage your Twitter Accounts
Being handed the keys to a business Twitter account can be an intimidating prospect. Business Twitter accounts are much more complex than the average user account, with a high drive for continual follower growth. They attract a wide range of people who are not just your friends or people who are interested in you personally.
Managing the Twitter accounts of a company takes some preparation from a social interaction standpoint, and from a technical standpoint. The first part of this article looks at the tips that will prepare you socially. The second part of this article will advise you on the technical tools that will make managing those Twitter accounts easier.
1: Be a better community manager on Twitter
Tweeting on behalf of a company means that you are now the voice of a brand, you are not “you.” The writing style you use will have to match that of the company. If your company Twitter accounts are not already using a clear style, you’ll need to establish one before moving forward.
An important aspect of this is changing how you refer to yourself when tweeting:
✘ Stop using first person singular – I, me, my
✔ Start using first person plural – We, us, our
Every time that you use the first person singular you’re taking away from the brand experience. A business Twitter account should be built so that users are connecting with the brand, not with you as an individual. I’m not saying don’t have personality, and fun. I’m saying don’t be a “me” when you represent a “we.”
The only time you’ll want to use an ‘I’ for a brand is when you are using mascot:
— Orlando Magic Mascot (@STUFFMagic) February 13, 2018
Create a support account and direct people to use it
More and more Twitter users are going online to seek help, make complaints, and do the things that the telephone once did. Nearly every type of complaint you can think of is being brought to Twitter business accounts, and you’re expected to solve it. This, of course, is not possible: You’re a community manager, not a technician!
Since you always want to try and help, establishing a support Twitter account can be your lifeline. When a complaint or issues comes your way that is out of your range, simply refer people to that account and let them know that someone with the right knowledge will be able to help them. Connecting this account with your support team is, of course, a must.
This approach will help move product problems and other complaints off of your main account. Many major companies have a support account. Check out: Twitter Support, Blackberry Help, Major League Soccer Support, and Nike Support as great examples. With your own Twitter support account in place you can handle those difficult issues this easily:
Thank you for the question. You can delete this run by going to your Activity tab> select the run> click on the 3 dots in the top right corner> select "remove." Let us know if you have any other questions.
— Nike Support (@NikeSupport) July 11, 2018
Twitter is 24 hours a day, but you don’t have to be
So you’re hired on to work the 9-5 shift in the Eastern Standard Time of Toronto. You’re there for all of your fans on Twitter during those hours, and you have great content going out from 9-5 EST.
What about your fans in Los Angeles who want to hear from you though? Even worse, what about your fans in Sydney who are being ignored? Are you supposed to wake up in the middle of the night to tweet for the Sydney rush hour? H-E-Double hockey sticks NO!
You need to start not only planning your tweets for a whole 24 hour day, but you need to start scheduling them using a tool like HootSuite. We’ll talk about those tools individually in the technical section below. For now, you need to realize that while Twitter is a 24/7/365 social platform, that doesn’t mean that you have to run yourself ragged keeping up with it.
While you’re automating this aspect of your presence, there’s also the option of automating your retweets with a provider. This will make all of your tweets popular even when you’re away from your account, making your business truly successful.
Discover and nurture the influencers in your audience
As a community manager for a company, you will want to speak with as many of your followers as possible. To look at it practically, some companies have Twitter follower numbers in the millions. One of the most popular companies on Twitter that sells a physical product (some web properties which sell a service are more popular) is Samsung Mobile. Can you imagine trying to talk with their constantly climbing 12.4 million followers? You have to go huge with big brands and partnerships:
— Samsung Mobile (@SamsungMobile) June 1, 2018
Some quick math shows that if you gave each follower one minute of your time via a tweet, it would take over 17 years to speak with each one!
With this in mind, it is important for you to instead work to identify who your most influential followers are, and work to get them talking about you. You can try looking at their own follower numbers, or look at their Klout score to gain some more insight into this.
Respond to haters with silence when appropriate
This is a very delicate line which you must balance. There are going to be people who mention your @username and who hurl abuse upon you. Some are going to say thing like this, which are just venting with nothing behind them:
there are few things i hate more than the @McDonalds corporation
— 𝖒𝖆𝖞𝖗𝖆 (@myruhsams) July 9, 2018
Other fans are going to come along with anger in them, but say things like this:
@McDonalds you’re app straight up just charged me and I didn’t even get my food wth I want a refund
— Shanice ♡ (@shanicesings) July 7, 2018
Which do you think is really worth your time, effort, and worry? You guessed it, the second one! They had a real problem at a store and need help.
Responding to trolling, cyber-bullying, or random hate is a waste of time. All you do is give the hater the recognition they are craving. Ignore them and eventually they’ll move on. If some trolling escalates and snowballs, as it does on Twitter occasionally, and your business loses followers, you’ll need to recover quickly with a Twitter follower service. With your numbers climbing quickly again you can recover from the trolling and get back on track.
2: Effectively manage your account with Twitter tools
Twitter is massive, you’ll need help from tools in order to harness it. Here are four Twitter tools that will help you accomplish the above five points.
I mention Hootsuite first as it may be the only Twitter tool you ever need. Not only can you manage your Twitter feed, but you can add other social profiles as well. The free version gives you the option to manage five at once, the paid account gives you unlimited accounts.
Use Hootsuite to schedule tweets, arrange columns of tweets for your mentions, hashtags, search keywords, and direct messages, and respond to everything without logging into Twitter itself. Hootsuite nearly does it all, and it does it in a very neatly presented dashboard.
This content sharing platform allows you to share webpages easier with a scheduling feature. Stop going on a reading spree and sharing every URL right away. Schedule it out with Buffer so that you don’t Tweet flood your followers. Their analytics will also help you understand what your audience reacts to.
This app lets you collect the best tweets from your users and publishes them as an online newspaper. You can set it to do this automatically, or you can choose it manually. This online newspaper will then be shared with your followers, creating Twitter content out of Twitter content – how meta!
I would be thrown under a bus by the Twitter mafia if I didn’t mention TweetDeck. This app was formerly independent, but was bought up by Twitter.
It functions nearly the same as HootSuite, but with fewer options for integration with other social profiles. It is still a powerful tool for managing your Twitter account, but it is not what it once was. You’ll enjoy using it if you only want to manage a business Twitter account without other social platforms on your dashboard.
Effectively managing a company Twitter account
Managing the Twitter account of a company takes the right set of social media skills, and the right tools in order to be effective. Remember the basics:
- Use first person plural
- Create a support account
- Schedule tweets for those in different timezones
- Discover and work with key influencers
- Ignore haters, but help those who are angry and frustrated
Couple these skills up with an effective Twitter management tool that suits your needs and you’ll be sure to create a useful and engaging Twitter experience for all the fans of your company!