You've launched your website, but do you know how your customers want you to tell them about company and product news and special promotions? The old saying "Catch the fish the way they want to be caught" is the best way to desribe good marketing.  Unobtrusively pushing information to your customers is always the best and most desired strategy. Snail mail and e-mail are the most preferred methods, followed by visiting the website when they feel like it, so you better make it very easy for your visitors to get new information and promotional offers on above the fold on your homepage. A homepage popup, a banner on top of the page, a rotating slideshow, a sidebar reminder, a button for a free download or widget can get the job done.

If you are selling a product and don't own a brick and mortar store, word-of-mouth and search engines are the top information channels, followed by print or online articles. Content marketing and a good PR strategy are essential; perhaps you need a blog to provide customer information, but there's really no subsititute for content and endorsements from trusted third party sources. Investing a little time and money in creating good content and getting others to write about your product or service will always get you positive results. 

Here's a ranking of the average customer's preferences for receiveing and discovering information. Use it as a guide to mix and match the best methods to use for your brand.

 

marketing promotion strategies infographic

Clients are always asking for a list of places to market and promote their websites.  Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a combination of creating links and content on your own site and on many others.  Every  SEO program is unique, many using geographic or industry-specific websites, but almost every site can benefit from a program that utilizes a combination of the marketing channels, sites and tools below:

Use Good Creative

  • Create a Emotional Connection
  • Kids sell - use images that connect to your audience

Search Marketing

  • Paid Search or PPC - Google Adwords, Yahoo Search Marketing, plus lots more smaller players
  • Search Engine Optimization - The best advertising channel for many businesses
  • Local Search - Free local listing on Google Maps

Blogging

  • Blogging - Showcase your products or expertise through your blog. Works great for service based business in which information can be given away
  • RSS - Feed out your blog content direct to RSS subscribers
  • Link Bait Content - Generate buzz and links through content
  • Guest Posting - Guest post on authority blogs
  • Paid Blog Posts - Reviewme

Social Networking Sites

  • Stumbleupon - Paid and free models
  • Twitter - Follow and connect with prospective customers and keep in touch with existing
  • Facebook Ads - Demographic and geotarget ads can work for DM
  • Facebook Profiles/Pages - Apps / fans pages / personal profiles
  • Mass Social News Sites - A story on digg or reddit may bring your site down!
  • Niche Social News Sites - Eg Sphinn for SEO
  • In Social Apps Ads - Socialmedia.com, fbx
  • Forum Signature - Advertise in your forum signature

Email

  • Blanket Mass Email - This is spam, so don’t do it.
  • Email database - buy/rent - Send your message to an opt in bought database
  • Email Shot Sponsorship - Sponsor a targeted website’s email shot
  • Email Newsletter - A regular reason to stay in touch with your customers
  • Application Emails - You can add marketing messages to other automated type emails you are sending out
  • Targeted Sales Email - The better researched and targeted your email (recipient and email copy) the better 
  • Personal Email Footer - Add marketing messages at the bottom of your emails

Content Promotion

  • Podcasts and itunes
  • Online Videos - Start a channel and publish on YouTube
  • Articles - Submit articles to ezinearticles & other article sites
  • Teleseminars
  • Free eBooks - build a targeted database by giving something away
  • Question and Answer Websites - Yahoo Answers, Blurtit, Answerbag, WikiAnswers

Online Other

  • Web Directories - Dmoz and Yahoo
  • Widgets & Toolbars
  • Virtual worlds, Secondlife - Would love to hear if this has worked for anyone
  • Text Ads
  • ISP level advertising - NebuAds
  • Behavioral Targeting
  • In Game Ads
  • Gamevitorials - Make a Flash game for your brand

Mobile

  • Mobile Search
  • Mobile Ad networks
  • Bluetooth Push
  • Mobile Apps - iPhone and Android Apps
  • SMS

Viral

  • Viral - funny or interesting content that people want to spread
  • Viral Seeding - Paid version seeding the above
  • Viral Loop - Gold dust, if the application spreads itself like Hotmail

Online Display

  • Banner Ads - Remember to try the ad exchanges for low CPM’s
  • Video Ads - Embedded ads in videos
  • Popups / Popunders
  • In Line Ads - Kontera, Vibrant Media
  • Contextual Text/Banner Networks - Google Adsense
  • Blog Ad Networks - BuySellAds, Federated Media
  • Niche Banner Ads - Eg w00tmedia.net for cult websites

Online Marketplaces

  • eBay - Sell anything on eBay
  • Amazon Marketplace
  • Supplier Portals - Wholesale/Import/Export Portals
  • Service marketplaces - Get projects from elance & guru
  • Classified Ads - Free ads on Craiglist, Gumtree & Google Base
  • Niche Online Storefronts - eg Dreamstime for Images

Online Networking

  • Linkedin - Build a network and Inmail rocks
  • Niche Online Communities - For example econsultancy
  • IM - Instant Messengers - Build your contact lists MSN, Gtalk, Skype 

Distribution Channels

  • Wholesalers
  • Exporters
  • Retailers

Online PR

  • Local and Industry Directories
  • Profile Page Promotion - From Wikipedia to Flickr
  • Blog Reviews - Get your products reviewed by top bloggers to generate buzz

Offline PR

  • Entering Business Competitions
  • Corporate Events
  • Interviews and quotes in Publications
  • Writing for Publications - With a bio of course!
  • Publicity Stunts
  • Celeb Endorsements

Partnership Marketing

  • Online Affiliate Programs
  • Joint Ventures

Networking

  • Corporate Entertainment
  • Personal Networking - Build a great black book & keep in touch
  • Tradeshow / Seminars - Go to events, places & seminars your clients are going to be & rub shoulders

Tradeshows

  • Speaking engagements
  • Stands
  • Tradeshow Sponsorship
  • Run Your Own Seminar

Promotional Material

  • Flyers
  • Branded Items
  • Catalogues and Brochures
  • Business Cards
  • Stickers
  • Promotional Gifts

Signage

  • Vehicle Lettering & Car Stickers
  • On Site Billboards - Construction industry standard
  • Store Front Signs
  • Walking Sandwich Boards - Also pointer sign holders

Cinema

  • In Film Product Placement
  • Pre Roll Ads

Television

  • TV Ads
  • Program Sponsorship
  • Product Placement

Radio

  • Radio Ads

Radio

  • Program Sponsorship
  • Product Placement

Outdoor Display

  • Road side billboards
  • Underground or Subways
  • Buses and Vehicles - Regional target via routes
  • Restrooms Billboards

Sponsorship

  • Team Sponsorship
  • Awards Sponsorship
  • Bursary Sponsorship

Direct Marketing

  • Directory Enquiries SMS Sponsorship
  • SMS List Marketing
  • Telesales Cold Calling
  • Mailshots
  • Personal handout
  • Door to Door Cold Calling

Print

  • Magazine Ads
  • Newspaper Ads
  • Publication Product Placement

Directories

  • Yellow Pages - Plus other large directories
  • Trade Directories

Doing Business Well

  • Word of Mouth - If your product is awesome it will spread
  • Referrals - The best form or marketing is when someone else refers you to a friend
web analyticsNeed to generate more traffic, leads and sales? Then SEO is for you. Search engine optimization (SEO)  is a way of improving the ranking of a website in search engine listings  Using search engines, visitors can find sites in a variety of ways: via paid-for advertisements in the search engine results pages (SERP’S), via third parties who are listed in the search engines, or via “organic” listings.  SEO is primarily concerned with improving the visibility of a site in the organic search results..

What is Search Engine Optimization?

Each search engine places emphasis on different factors such as the design and layout, keyword density and the number of relevant sites linking to and from a website.  Since Google is by for the #1 search engine, most SEO strategies focus on getting top rankings on Google searches.  But depending on your target market, this may be a very good or a very bad strategy.  If your audience is general, Google is a good place to start.  If your traffic sources are more industry specific, focusing on trafffic sources beyond  just Google (such as industry-specific blogs, directories, message boards, journals and serach engines)  is usually a great way to get more targeted traffic and also boost your search engine rankings without spending all your time and budget on a single channel which may not be as good a fit for your site as others. We will first analyze your situation to recommend the most effective SEO strategy.

How Google Determines Your PR (Page Rank)

SEO ProcessPageRank is a numeric value that represents how important a page is on the web. Google figures that when one page links to another page, it is effectively casting a vote for the other page. The more votes that are cast for a page, the more important the page must be. Also, the importance of the page that is casting the vote determines how important the vote itself is. Google calculates a page’s importance from the votes cast for it. How important each vote is is taken into account when a page’s PageRank is calculated.
PageRank is Google’s way of deciding a page’s importance. It matters because it is one of the factors that determines a page’s ranking in the search results. It isn’t the only factor that Google uses to rank pages, but it is an important one.

Search engines are always changing their ranking algorithms in order to index the most relevant sites the the search term, which means a good SEO program is ongoing and adapts to market and search engine changes.

Using the right strategy, Sunday Media will increase your companies website rankings and traffic. This is is the key to improving your web site so that it will come up on the first page of the SERP (search engine results page).

Our SEO Approach

We will write the meta tags for your page. (Meta Tags are the instructions for the search engine spiders (Robots). We will in some cases recode your site according to web standards, a set of guidelines put in place by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). One of the important recommendations of web standards when creating a web page is to remove from the html file any code that describes the web page’s appearance (fonts, colors, layout) and have all this presentational data in a separate file, known as a Cascading Style Sheet, or CSS.

Coding webpages according to web standards allows search engine spiders to access the content (words) on the page without having to filter through the mess of bloated, typically table based layout code. Html tables were once the only solution for complex web page layouts, but are now obsolete. Visually, a web page coded with CSS positioning will look identical (if desired) to a page coded using table layouts, but the benefits of the CSS layout include smaller file sizes (usually 50% smaller), faster loading pages, a much easier and less costly to maintain website, and most importantly, from an SEO point of view, trims the html file down to content and semantically appropriate tags only.

Remember that the search engines are all based on words, and its our  job to put the right words in the right places, so that the search engine may index your website under the right keywords or key phrases. Our SEO Service will also give you suggestions on modifications to your text (SEO Copywriting) and graphics that will also optimize the site. Sometimes your system of navigation may be working against optimum search engine results. We will alert you to any design problems and suggest solutions. Web standards play a key role these days. When the changes are in place then we will begin search engine submission. Remember that search engines handle 90% of the Internet’s searches every day.

SEO ROI

SEO services will increase your companies website rankings and traffic. We use an advanced search engine optimization technique that is proven to work. Our SEO services are safe and cost effective, building your corporate image, internet exposure and clientele while creating a tremendous ROI.

Optimization, Internet Marketing, Web-Site Promotion Services

The ranking methods of Google, Yahoo and BING change every three months, so we will offer you monthly maintenance packages to make sure you stay up on top even though the search engine algorithms change. There are very few SEO companies and SEO experts that are well rounded and understand the importance of bringing link building and SEO services together in their client campaigns. Some focus on search engine optimization (SEO) while some will build you high page rank, but very few will get you results!

Many companies also use outdated methods that no longer work with any search engine that is link focused. At Sunday Media SEO we have taken our SEO (Search Engine Optimization) company to the top of Google for many of our targeted keywords in a short time. We have combined link building and SEO together to get fast results that would normally take SEO companies much longer to achieve.

Proven Search Engine Optimization Specialists

As a search engine optimization specialist, our firm is all about getting top rankings on Google, Yahoo and BING. To make major money on the web, you have to get free traffic through search engine optimization. A good search engine optimization specialist will use all of the researched keyword phrases by creating individual pages for each on your site. The Specialist will create proper SEO Copywriting text for each of the keyword phrases. If you fail to take this approach, you will be missing out on the massive traffic available on the web.

Google Search Engine Optimization

Our Google packages specialize in search engine optimization (SEO) for the Google search engine. Because Google is the most widely used internet search engine the commercial importance of achieving a good page rank on Google is our goal.

We will review your website and provide an analysis of the following:

* A technical overview of the strengths and weaknesses of your website
* Factors that are preventing top rankings
* An analysis of your website rankings in the top search engines
* A market analysis consisting of the Search Engine Positioning of your competitors
* A detailed report consisting of realistic opportunities for organic positioning
* Keyword use in document title
* Keyword use in outbound links
* Global popularity report of your website
* Keyword use in metatags
* Keyword use in the content of your website
* HTML validation of pages to W3C standards
* Keyword use in headline and highlighted texts
* Search engine compatibility and details
* Keyword use in image ALT attributes
* Keyword density
* Keyword use in bold body text

 

web brandingAdvertising on the web is the most widely undertaken promotional methods about any product or service. The news about the existence of your business must reach out to a large number of audiences and only then will you be able to attract customers to do business with you.

The method of promotion on the web is known as SEO or search engine optimization. Search engine is not just one method, but is in fact a combination of different methods for promotion. Online business owners undertake search engine optimization so that their sites can rank high in all of the major search engines. Ranking high in all popular and major search engines is one of the surest means to attracting huge traffics to your online site. Search engine optimization, if done in the proper manner, is sure to give immense benefits to your business.

It said that only a professional knows what work he has to do and it is not at all different in the case of search engine optimization also. If you are an online business owner, you will do wonders to your business if you hand over the search engine optimization work to a professional firm. Evaluating the existing competition in the market and finding out the methods that has been used for optimization is a good way of going about doing things related to search engine optimization.

This is your business and you have worked really hard to put this up. So do not just sit back and relax once you hand over the search engine optimization work to a firm that has trained professional. You must keep a constant track of the work which is being done and see if this is bringing results for your business or not. You are best judge to know if your business is benefiting from the search engine marketing strategy or not. If the strategy is not working out for you, sit and talk to the professional and try to find out what is wrong. It may be that the strategies adopted for search engine optimization may not be suitable to your business.

Remember each business is different and so the strategies adopted must also be different. The strategy which has proved to be a huge success for your friend’s business may not at all be suitable for you. So what you must do is hire professionals who really know their very well, not someone how just has fancy degree and is not capable of doing anything of substance. The idea is to make a wise choice from the huge number of professionals who are working in the field of search engine optimization. Search engine optimization is in fact the most innovative means to do promotion about anything.

 

 

Need a good checklist for your website design and marketing?  Sunday Media can help with a website audit and a redesign depending on your needs. Here is a comprehensive list of things every website owner should consider when making a website both user and Google friendly to ensure that your site is easy to find both by machines and human beings.  See the lit below, then contact us for advice on the best channels to use in your marketing campaign.

Home page

  • No splash page
  • Instant page identification
  • Provides overview of site
  • Site purpose is clear
   

 Domain name & URLs

  • Short and memorable
  • Uses Keywords
  • Used in email addresses
  • Uses Favicon
  • Site.com redirect to www. version:
  • Alternate Domain redirects
  • Home page redirect to root
  • No underscores in filenames
  • Keywords in directory names
  • Multiple pages per directory
  • Registered for 5+ years
 
  • Multiple versions:
  • .com
  • .org
  • .net
  • .biz
  • Hyphenations
  • Misspellings
  • Product names
  • Brand names
  • Type-in keywords URLs

Browser issues

  • Visible address bar
  • Fully functional navigation tools
  • Visible status bar
 
  • Site works in multiple browsers
  • No browser hi-jacking

Site logo

  • Displays company name clearly
  • Isn’t hidden among clutter
  • Links to home page
 
  • Unique and original
  • Use tagline consistently across site

Design considerations

  • Instant site identification
  • Crisp, clean image quality
  • Clean, clutter-less design
  • Consistent colors and type
  • Whitespace usage
  • Minimal distractions
  • Targets intended audience
  • Meets industry best practices
  • Easy to navigate
  • Descriptive links
  • Good on-page organization
  • Easy to find phone number
  • Don’t link screen captures
  • Skip option for flash
  • Consistent page formatting
  • No/minimal on-page styling
  • Avoid text in images
 
  • Font size is adequate
  • Font type is friendly
  • Paragraphs not too wide
  • Visual cues to important elements
  • Good overall contrast
  • Low usage of animated graphics
  • Uses obvious action objects
  • Avoid requiring plugins
  • Minimize the use of graphics
  • Understandable graphic file names
  • No horizontal scrolling
  • Non-busy background
  • Recognizable look and feel
  • Proper image / text padding
  • Uses trust symbols
  • Works on variety of resolutions
  • Works on variety of screen widths

Architectural issues

  • Correct robots.txt file
  • Declare doctype in HTML
  • Validate HTML
  • Don’t use frames
  • Alt tag usage on images
  • Custom 404 error page
  • Printer friendly
  • Underlined links
  • Differing link text color
  • Breadcrumb usage
  • Nofollow cart links
  • Robots.txt non-user pages
  • Nofollow non-important links
  • Review noindex usage
  • Validate CSS
  • Check broken links
  • No graphics for ON/YES, etc.
  • Page size less than 50K
 
  • Flat directory structure
  • Proper site hierarchy
  • Unique titles on all pages
  • Title reflects page info and heading
  • Unique descriptions on pages
  • No long-tail page descriptions
  • Proper bulleted list formats
  • Branded titles
  • No code bloat
  • Minimal use of tables
  • Nav uses absolute links
  • Good anchor text
  • Text can be resized
  • Key concepts are emphasized
  • CSS less browsing
  • Image-less browsing
  • Summarize all tables

Navigation

  • Located top or top-left
  • Consistent throughout site
  • Links to Home page
  • Links to Contact Us page
  • Links to About Us page
  • Simple to use
  • Indicates current page
  • Links to all main sections
  • Proper categorical divisions
  • Non-clickable is obvious
  • Accurate description text
 
  • Links to Login
  • Provides Logout link
  • Uses Alt attribute in images
  • No pop-up windows
  • No new window links
  • Do not rely on rollovers
  • Avoid cascading menus
  • Keep scent from page to page
  • Targets expert and novice users
  • Absolute links

Content

  • Grabs visitor attention
  • Exposes need
  • Demonstrates importance
  • Ties need to benefits
  • Justifies and calls to action
  • Gets to best stuff quickly
  • Reading level is appropriate
  • Customer focused
  • Benefits and features
  • Targets personas
  • Provides reassurances
 
  • Consistent voice
  • Eliminate superfluous text
  • Reduce /explain industry jargon
  • No typo, spelling or grammar errors
  • Contains internal contextual links
  • Links out to authoritative sources
  • Enhancing keyword usage (SEO)
  • Date published on articles/news
  • Web version of PDF docs available
  • Consistent use of phrasing
  • No unsubstantiated statements

Content Appearance

  • Short paragraphs
  • Uses sub-headings
  • Uses bulleted lists
  • Calls to action on all pages
  • Good contrast
 
  • No overly small text for body
  • No overly small text for headings
  • Skimmable and scannable
  • Keep link options in close proximity

Links and buttons

  • Limit the number of links on a page
  • Avoid small buttons and tiny text for links
  • Leave space between links and buttons
  • Avoid using images as the only link
 
  • Link important commands
  • Underline all links
  • Accurately reflects the page it refers

About Us page

  • Adequately describes company
  • Shows team biographies
  • Shows mission statement
  • Up to date information
  • Note associations, certifications & awards
  • Links to support pages:
  • Contact page
 
  • Investor relations
  • Company news
  • Registration info
  • Job opportunities
  • Newsletters
  • Link to social media profiles

Contact Us page

  • Easy to find
  • Multiple contact options:
  • Phone
  • Fax
  • Email
  • Form
  • Chat
  • Customer feedback
  • Street map
  • Hours of operation
  • Final call to action
 
  • Multiple points of contact:
  • Customer service
  • Tech support
  • Inquiries
  • General info
  • Job applications
  • Billing
  • Management team
  • Ad-free
  • Form requires only essential info

E-Commerce considerations

  • Mini-product basket always available
  • Displays payment options:
  • CC
  • Paypal
  • Google Checkout
 
  • No multiple paths to dupe product pages
  • No tracking IDs in URLs
  • Exclude shopping cart pages
  • No (or nofollowed) links to secure pages
  • Keep secure cert current

Product pages

  • Visible calls to action
  • Clear contact info (phone #)
  • Consistent layout
  • Clear pricing
  • Show additional fees
  • Clear product presentation
  • Show shipping cost
  • Show availability
  • Provide delivery options, details
  • Estimate delivery date
  • Link to site security info
  • Return / guarantee info
  • Allow “save for later”
  • Related products & up sells
  • Clear product image
  • Describe images
 
  • Enhanced multiple image views
  • Product description
  • Product details & specs
  • Product selection options
  • Customer product reviews
  • Product comparisons
  • Printer-friendly option
  • “Add to cart” close to item
  • Secondary “add” button at bottom
  • Standardized product categorization
  • Clutter-free page
  • Provide International pricing
  • Provide product search
  • Emphasis brand quality and trust
  • Compare to offline competitors
  • Short URLs with keywords

Basket page

  • Obvious checkout link
  • Product descriptions
  • Product image
  • Show availability
  • Updatable quantities
  • Ability to remove items
  • Link to products
  • Product price
  • Payment options
  • Promos/vouchers explained
  • Link to security
 
  • Link to guarantees
  • Show delivery costs
  • Show delivery date
  • Allow gift options
  • “Continue shopping” link or options
  • Show contact information
  • No advertising/upselling
  • Don’t keep personal info w/o authorization
  • Shipping questions answered
  • International shipping
  • International address forms

Mini baskets

  • Make new products added obvious
  • Link to full basket page
 
  • Allow removal of products
  • Show order total

Checkout process

  • No hidden fees
  • No pre-registration
  • Keep checkout process short
  • Show benefits of registration:
  • Faster checkout in future
  • Access to order history
  • Check order status
  • Saved for later information
  • Access to special promotions
  • Personalization
  • Joining a community
  • Show checkout progress meter
  • Effective after-order follow-up
  • Receipt / Confirmation:
 
  • Printable
  • Emailed
  • Thank you message
  • Order number
  • Order date
  • Items purchased
  • Expected delivery date
  • Payment method
  • Cancellation policy
  • How to cancel
  • Return policy
  • Address return costs
  • After-sale guarantees

Login & My Account pages

  • Easy to find login access
  • Use security protocols
  • Provide security assurances
  • Link for new registrations
  • Outline account benefits
  • Reclaim lost password option
  • “Remember me” option
  • Link to privacy policy
  • Logged-in status is clear
  • Account info change access
  • Confirmation of change info
 
  • Links to financial info
  • Transaction history
  • Invoices
  • Balances
  • Payment methods
  • Choose method of delivery:
  • Text email
  • HTML email
  • Snail mail
  • Overnight
  • Etc.

Help and FAQ pages

  • Avoid marketing hype
  • Allow Help search
  • Provide printable text
  • Link to additional resources:
 
  • User guides
  • Product support
  • Customer support
  • Downloads

Forms and errors

  • Flexible entry requirements
  • Allow for tabbing between fields
  • Proper tab order
  • Clear field labels
  • Text label above field box
  • Only require necessary information
  • Minimal instructions
  • Instructions above field
  • Friendly error output
  • Errors obviously indicated
  • Errors describe remedy
  • Errors provide contact / help option
  • Preserve data with errors
  • Provide pre-selected choices
  • Don’t overdo choices
 
  • Note required fields
  • Progress indicator
  • Progress navigation
  • Remove navigation
  • Link to privacy information
  • Final info verification check
  • Confirmation/thank you page
  • Stack fields vertically
  • Proper use of radio buttons
  • Keep “submit” close to fields
  • Field boxes adequately wide
  • No “reset” or “cancel” buttons
  • Autocomplete=off as necessary
  • Buttons denote action

Site search

  • Located in top-right corner
  • Search not case sensitive
  • Properly labeled as “search”
  • Link to “advanced search”
  • Forgiving of misspellings
  • Shows similar products
  • Shows related items in results
  • No “no products found”
  • Provide refinement options
  • Provide alternate spellings
 
  • Provide links to relevant pages
  • Show search string in results
  • Don’t place results in tables
  • Display exact matches first
  • Display close matches second
  • Bold query words in results
  • Display titles with descriptions
  • No more than 20 results p/ page
  • Option to increase result p/ page
  • Link to additional results pages

Privacy and Security pages

  • Present info in easy to read format
  • Make information easily scannable
  • Provide section summaries
  • Identify information types collected
  • Explain how cookies are used
 
  • Explain how user information will be used
  • Explain how info will be protected
  • Provide additional protection tutorials
  • Link to these pages in footer
  • Provide links to contact info

Site map

  • Keep information current
  • Link to site map in footer
  • Linked from help and 404 pages
  • Provide overview paragraph
 
  • Provide intro to main sections
  • Visible site hierarchy
  • Descriptive text and links
  • Link to xml sitemap in robots.txt file

 

 

The key to most online marketing is to get a conversation going with your potential and existing customers. Social media is like a big cocktail party; in order to network you need a good ice-breaker. Think about Twitter as one of the great ice-breakers in this online party.  So how do you get people to engage in meaningful conversations?

You can start a conversation on Twitter in many different ways, but they all come back this: be yourself and find the right tone to engage with people you want to get to know better.

In this post I’ll explore some easy ways to start Twitter conversations.  You’ll see just how easy it is to take this first step in networking on Twitter in fewer than 140 characters at a time.

Here are 13 great tips to better network with people on Twitter:

#1: Discuss What You Know: Publish Useful Tips or Facts, Daily

One of the first ways you can contribute to the conversation is to share useful information. This is always welcome when it’s given from a fresh perspective.  And it’s a great way to grab the attention of the people you want to reach.

Cyndy Hoenig offers about five PR tips a day… Notice how she used the word you in this tweet to grab readers’ interest.

#2: Retweet to Acknowledge Others

RT = Retweet in Twitter parlance. You basically hit retweet to share and acknowledge other peoples best ideas. Why not add a comment at the same time and add more to the conversation? Simply being social is a great way to get people to notice you and begin making connections.

Jonathan Saar is simply being social.

#3: Reach Out With Follow Friday

Although Follow Friday (#FF) has been around a while, it can still be  a good way to initiate conversations when you put a little thought into it.  Just put #FF in a post of Friday and see what happens.

#4: Answer Other People’s Tweets

Another easy way to engage people is to respond to others’ tweets. Whether it’s a question or something that grabs your attention, try to respond in an authentic voice. People recognize sincerity and are more likely to respond to it.

Janice Campbell shows us how natural conversations can be on Twitter.

#5: Respond When Something Grabs Your Attention

When responding to something that interests you, show it.  Show you care about what people have to say.

Cheryl Garrett adds a personal touch to her professional Twitter presence.

#6: Introduce Yourself to New Followers

Give your new followers a personal welcome that shows you care about getting to know them better.  Some people do this in the public Twitter feed and some people prefer introductions in direct messages.  Find out what’s best for your audience.

#7: Introduce Yourself at Twitter Events

You’ll notice people following live events on Twitter with a hashtag.  When you attend your first event on Twitter, don’t get distracted by the tools and forget your social manners. Remember tointroduce yourself to everyone. And why not follow up personally with a few of the other attendees after the event? This is a great way to meet new people with similar interests.

#8: Let People Know When You Add Them to Your Twitter List

As you add people to your Twitter lists, give them a shout-out to let them know.  Everyone enjoys this small sign of recognition.

#9: Ask For Help

Many other people on Twitter are also looking to engage in meaningful conversations.  Make it easy for others to respond to you and tell them what you are looking for.

Daniel Casciato uses Twitter to find sources to interview for his articles.

#10: Say Thank You

You’ll find many different reasons to thank people on Twitter.

Notice how Amy Porterfield is connecting with this person on both Facebook and Twitter.

#11: Say Thanks When Others Add You to Their Twitter Lists

The people who add you to their Twitter lists are often good connections because you share similar interests.  Reach out to thank them and introduce yourself personally.  You can use auto-responders to thank people and add information that can lead to new connections.

#12: Ask Questions

Questions work wonders on Twitter.  With a little thought you can come up with great questions to find the people you want to engage with on Twitter.

Katie Fox asks a specific question to engage conversation of interest to her.

As you can see, it’s easy to start conversations on Twitter.

#13: Use Direct Messaging to break through the cluttter

When you DM another person on Twitter, they are more likely to see and respond than they are to a random Tweet.  Direct Messages tend not to get lost in the clutter and are a great way to reach out to others.

 

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