Social media can be a very useful tool for your small business. In addition to serving as an effective, low-cost marketing channel, you can also use it to engage your employees online and foster a spirit of community effort in the workplace. Twitter, which is among the most widely used social media platforms, is probably already populated with some of your employees. Find out how to leverage Twitter to bring your employees together, market your company and grow your business.
Skip Professional Posters
Many businesses are harnessing the power of Twitter as a marketing channel by hiring one or two professionals who devote the entirety of their time monitoring the company’s Twitter account, writing and managing posts, and responding to comments. Instead, consider letting all of your staff members get in on this process. Encourage your workers to post about the company, not only during breaks but during regular work hours as well. This fosters a more relaxed work environment, and tends to bring your employees together online, leading to collaborative posting efforts on either personal Twitter accounts or your company account.
Jump on the Hashtag Bandwagon
One of Twitter’s most notable features is the regular use of hashtags in posts. Hashtags can literally be any combination of words, phrases, characters and numbers, as long as they are preceded by the hashtag (or pound) symbol. Hashtags are essentially keywords – thoughts, events and ideas – identifying popular topics of discussion. A hashtag may be started as part of an inside joke between friends; sharing the hashtag on Twitter allows others to get in on the joke and often starts a chain reaction of sharing.
Consider starting daily or weekly hashtags that are versions of an inside joke, phrase or concept that is related to your company, something that only you and your employees would know about or understand. Once started, encourage your employees to tweet using this hashtag. This is a creative way to leverage Twitter to engage your employees, foster an ongoing conversation among them and allow them to feel like insiders. Starting this sort of tradition can spawn a trend of work-based hashtags that encourage your employees to interact with each other. An added benefit is that curiosity about the inside conversation may draw the attention of your employees’ followers to your company.
Making Advocates of Employees
Making your employees into advocates of your small business is another great use of Twitter and a good way to encourage a sense of camaraderie. Your employees have their own Twitter networks. Twitter offers a virtually unparalleled opportunity to leverage exposure, as tweets about your company are passed on to more and more personal networks – networks filled with potential customers. Encourage your employees to tweet regularly about your business, especially tweets that reflect positive aspects of the company and the reasons why they enjoy working for you. By sharing such positive notes, your employees become advocates for the business, and they also often become advocates for one another, building a stronger sense of friendship and togetherness.