IAB Twitter guidelines for brands – 20 tips for Twitter success

The UK Government recently unveiled its first Twitter strategy document to encourage departments to get tweeting. Weighing in at a hefty 5,382 words it was the equivalent of more than 250 tweets.

In response the IAB has produced some slightly more pithy advice for brands looking to get the best out of Twitter – and we managed to keep the word count down to 307. Have a read, let us know what you think and feel free to add some tips of your own.

Bear in mind that these are just starting points. What we want to do is engage with people using Twitter regularly to learn from their experience and develop the strongest set of guidelines for brands seeking to get the most out of micro-blogging. So why not use the comments facility below to add your own tips (but try and keep each entry under 140 characters).

20 tips for Twitter success

  1. STOP! Why use Twitter? Is it because it’s the thing to do or because it will add to your communications?

  2. What are your objectives for using Twitter? Be clear on your strategy at every step.

  3. Don’t get Twitterjacked. A foolhardy consumer may already be talking under your name. Claim your space.

  4. Ensure communication is legal, decent, honest and truthful. Follow the CAP Code.

  5. Don’t over-tweet and overwhelm your audience. The traditional rules of consumer engagement still apply.

  6. Allocate appropriate resources. Twitter is not a five minute job.

  7. Establish a tone of voice appropriate to your product and audience. This is YOUR brand talking to real people.

  8. Think about how you will measure success. Is number of followers enough if they’re not engaged?

  9. Be current. Twitter is immediate, so make your updates relevant, topical and insightful.

  10. Don’t hitch your wagon to popular trending topics. Learn the lessons of Habitat.

  11. If you want to drive sales, make it easy. Give customers online vouchers or discount codes.

  12. If you have specific products, services or incentives to promote, set up a dedicated Twitter feed.

  13. Try to respond to direct messages, especially those from users interested in learning more about you.

  14. Ask questions of followers, don’t treat Twitter as just another broadcast vessel. Encourage interaction.

  15. Embrace the re-tweet. If you see a post that will interest your audience don’t be afraid to re-tweet it.

  16. Don’t shy away from criticism. Why not contact unhappy tweeters directly and try to resolve issues?

  17. Monitor what people are saying about you. Check Tweetdeck and Monniter regularly.

  18. Encourage offline interaction. The IAB held a Meet, Tweet and Greet night to get to know our followers.

  19. Promote your Twitter feed. Don’t expect people to find you. Advertise the fact that you use Twitter.

  20. Always innovate. Whoever you are, 100 followers isn’t enough. Use your imagination to enlist more.

Follow the IAB on Twitter

  • Don’t use the Twitter website to tweeet, use an app with added functionality.

    Think about who you want to communicate with. Customers? Clients? Potential staff? Influencers?

    Follow the people you want to follow you. It’s likely they’ll reciprocate.

    Followers like to see your personality come through. Work hard to help that to happen.

    Remember, everything you tweet is in the public domain.

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    norm 🙂