7 Tips For Using Twitter for Better Customer Engagement

Are you using Twitter to engage your customers? Here's how!

There are a number of ways that your brand can use Twitter, from becoming a thought leader to generating leads, but one of the most vibrant – and most unique – is developing meaningful relationships with your customers.

On Twitter, you have the unprecedented opportunity to have one-on-one conversations in a public forum with each and every one of your customers. Are you taking advantage of this?

Here are seven ways you can develop better customer engagement using Twitter:

1. Keep track of your VIP customers using lists

A VIP customer can be defined in any number of ways, from someone who purchases from your brand regularly, to someone who engages with your content and shares it with their network. However your brand defines “VIP” is up to you – but you should be keeping track.

Adding these customers into a Twitter list will help you check in on what they tweet, and engage them above and beyond your general Twitter audience.

2. Respond ASAP

Any customer that takes the time to reach out to your brand on Twitter expects a fast response. Whether your account is customer service-specific or a general brand account, be sure to respond to genuine customer inquiries, concerns and comments as quickly as possible.

If you are low on resources, or you know your Twitter account will be un-manned for a certain period of time, it’s a good idea to note the hours of operation in your bio.

3. Be the first to reach out

Don’t wait for your customers to tweet to you – tweet to them, first! You can tweet to your audience in general, use a hashtag you know they frequently use, or even @mention specific customers for one-on-one tweeting.

4. Know your brand voice

Your customers want to feel as though they are speaking to a person, not a brand, when they engage with you on Twitter. And while that doesn’t necessarily mean you should let Timmy the intern treat the account like his personal one, you should incorporate a brand voice in all of your tweets.

If you’re not sure of your voice, read this article for some tips on using Twitter for better branding.

5. Personalize support

Further along the personalization spectrum is personalizing each support message you send on Twitter. And this doesn’t have to be as labor-intensive as it might sound. If you have a customer service handle, it’s simply a matter of allowing your representatives to include a “signature” at the end of each tweet. This signature has to be short, of course, so something like “- LD”, using their initials, would work.

6. Reward loyal followers

Have you noticed the same handful of Twitter users constantly retweeting, replying to, and otherwise engaging with your tweets? These are valuable community members, and it doesn’t hurt to acknowledge them!

Rewarding loyal followers can be something as simple as sending them a thank you, or as grand as giving them a personalized discount code or a free product.

7. Use customer intelligence for a better experience

If you use CRM and/or social intelligence software, now’s the time to use those insights. Pair up the Twitter handles with the customers in your database, and ensure that their experience is consistent no matter what channel they reach you through.

Do you have any tips for engaging with customers on Twitter? Share them in the comments below!

Photo credit: flazingo_photos via Visual Hunt / CC BY-SA