One of the ways to get the most from Twitter as a business marketing tool is to use Lists. These allow you to segment your followers and ensure you don’t miss tweets from those you really want to hear from.
It’s easy to set up lists – just click on Lists as shown and hit the create list button.
But before you do, it’s worth taking a little time to think about how you want to organise the people you follow – reorganising them later will be a tedious chore.
I generally keep 3 kinds of lists
- industry type (e.g. food, crafts, marketing)
- people I want to keep in touch with (friends, clients, networking contacts, journalists)
- people I’d like to get to know (targets, prospects, influencers)
Lists can be either private (only you can see who is on the list) or public (anyone can see who is on it). Think carefully about whether to make your lists public. I make my industry type lists public, but keep the others to myself.
Now you have created your lists you can start adding the people you follow to them. This is easy to do – and equally easy to forget! But do make the effort and try and remember every time you follow someone to add them to the appropriate lists.
To get the best out of your lists you need to monitor them regularly. This is where a tool like Hootsuite is invaluable – just add a stream (column) for your most important lists and you can see at a glance what is happening.
Some of the ways I use lists are:
- checking if journalists are looking for or discussing stories I can contribute to
- looking at what’s happening with businesses I’d like to target so I can reply, retweet or join a conversation to build a relationship
- staying in touch with my networking contacts so I can build those relationships too
- helping clients build their profiles through retweets, conversations etc.
Don’t forget to make use of other people’s public lists too. These can be a great way to find new people to follow and you can also subscribe to lists without following everyone. Just go into the person’s profile and click on lists.
So if you are serious about using Twitter to market your business, make sure you use Lists – they will dramatically cut down the amount of time you need to spend to be effective.