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Should your small business use Twitter?

There was a recent article by Carnegie Mellon University that reported some facts about what people are looking for when they follow someone on Twitter. This especially applies to businesses. Much of the findings seem like they should be common sense, but really they aren’t for some people.

Here are some things they mention in the article:

• Old news is no news: Twitter emphasizes real-time information, so information rapidly gets stale. Followers quickly get bored of even relatively fresh links seen multiple times.

• Limit Twitter-specific syntax: Overuse of #hashtags, @mentions and abbreviations makes tweets hard to read. But some syntax is helpful; if posing a question, adding a hashtag helps everyone follow along.

I see people only pushing they product or not replying to followers in a way that others can see the answer to the question asked. While some think social networking isn’t always the most productive use of time for small businesses, there is still a need for it in most industries. It may take some creativity to figure out how you should use Twitter or Facebook and now Pinterest, but you should be where you customers are.

I would think business owners from years ago thought the same about television advertising… Why would you want to go with something you are unsure about when what  you are doing now works?

I there are a lot of reasons you should be on these sites, the main one is people don’t talk directly to other people anymore. They show happiness and like to bitch about things on their social site of choice.

A good way to test the waters is to join the sites and see what people are saying about your business. Many times they are already talking about you, other times they aren’t. You never really know until you take a look for yourself.

How do you use sites like Twitter for your business?

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