We see professionals and businesses wasting their time, money and effort by making these top 5 mistakes on Twitter. These mistakes can cost you loyal customers, partnerships, and just some overall embarrassment. Twitter is one of the most effective Social Media tools in building valuable relationships with your target audience members, so take our expert advice and avoid these top 5 mistakes...
Unless you are a wildly popular celebrity, this 'too cool to follow back' sentiment from businesses and brands on Twitter is the first most common mistake. Of course the following to followers ratio should represent you as a leader, but not following many users at all on Twitter signifies that you don't care about your audience. I recently read a blurb about a professional blogger who refuses to shop at the cheese store in his neighborhood because they haven't followed him back on Twitter. People are willing to go further, to less convenient places, if that store or business is following and interacting with them on Twitter. Acting as if your too good to follow your fans back on Twitter is basically a big "F you", which risks the entire purpose you're on the social network; to gain more loyal audience members!
Businesses and personal brands who use third party apps such as Hootsuite and Tweetdeck are doing it wrong 90% of the time. First, apps like Hootsuite update your Facebook and Twitter simultaneously - this is something you never want to do. The audiences on Facebook are different from Twitter; they do not appreciate or have use for #trendingtopics, and the @tagging functionality does not work on Facebook while using Hootsuite. If your audience feels that you're not engaging, or speaking to them in the right manner in the right space, then they'll likely unfollow or unsubscribe from your updates. You can even notice on Facebook less interactions with robot updates. Tweetdeck can be useful for scheduling daily special tweets, or for retailers to schedule tweets in the evening - but it's dangerous in that lots of brands forget the essential rule of Twitter; inform, respond & engage! Tweetdeck makes people lazy and they forget to check their accounts to RT retweet or respond. We've even seen businesses forget and schedule self promo tweets on holidays! Making them seem totally impersonal and self centered. Our general rule is to stay away from robots! People are much better. Here are some helpful, even essential, third party Twitter tools that will boost your following and engagement on Twitter.
Nearly 7 out of 10 people we follow on Twitter have an automatic DM (Direct Message) set up to respond with something like "Thanks for the follow, visit my website at www.shamelessselfpromo". This is a waste, and literally almost makes people dislike you immediately on Twitter. Auto DM's send the signal that this person might be all about self-promo and can generate the exact opposite reaction you're looking for. In general the rule is NO AUTO DM's for new followers, the only acceptable time to consider is when you're running a really interesting free-product promo.
No one thinks it's cool to pay for dates, so why would you think it's any different on Twitter? We know well established businesses that make this mistake too often; paying for a company to generate followers at a certain rate per user. Typically spending between $0.01 to up to $1.50 a follower! The reason why this is ridiculous is because you are almost always paying for random or fake followers, that are not your target audience members. It's completely acceptable for a company to promise to aggressively follow a target audience to follow back, but it is not acceptable, and is 100% of the time a fraud, to pay for followers. You're wasting your money. Furthermore, the whole point of Twitter is to spread the word about something your followers are interested in, not just 'looking' like you have followers. You're missing the point here if you're paying for followers. And likely people are paying attention and calling you out for it.
Logging in once a month to tweet is a mistake that basically makes being on Twitter an obsolete cause. Don't bother. Twitter is an active space of individuals who are seeking information and engagement about topics that interest them. Coming on the space and just randomly tweeting or retweeting once in awhile is a wasted effort on your part. Combine Twitter in your Company's Social Media content plan, or delete it. Looking inactive on Twitter is worse than not being there at all.