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Should You Advertise on Twitter?

written by: Regina Woodard•edited by: Amy Carson•updated: 6/30/2011

While not as popular as Facebook, Twitter is gaining on the popular combination of online web-texting to a host of different people. But can a business actually do well with Twitter? Learn why advertising on Twitter is not merely a good thing, but something you should be doing.

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    It's hard to believe, but there are still people who wonder what this Twitter fad is all about. For many people, the addition of Twitter is just one more social network site in a sea of so many, but ultimately, if you have Facebook, why do you need Twitter?

    That is a good question and for the millions of people that use Facebook to connect with friends and family, there probably is no need to join up with Twitter. But what about a business? The Internet has made reaching out around the world such an easy task and with social networks in place, even easier than we ever could have imagined with that simple thing known as email. So if a business has a Facebook page, what would be the point of joining Twitter?

    There are many reasons for a business to not only join Twitter, but to advertise on Twitter.

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    Advertising on Twitter

    So is there really a difference between Facebook and Twitter?

    Yes and no. Yes, both sites are considered as part of the big surge of social networks that enticed teenagers and college studentsAdvertising on Twitter  everywhere; yes, they are free to sign up for and can be accessed from just about anywhere, from computers, to email, to desktop applications (like TweetDeck) to having a little slice of your smartphone; and yes, they reach out to many people.

    The interface for both sites is different — Twitter is more like a web interface for a quick text message. Messages or 'tweets' come about in a real time fashion, with many tweets coming in just about every minute. Twitter is also a bit more conversational than that of Facebook; while you can have conversations via messages, Twitter can keep a conversation going with many people at the same time.

    Advertising on Twitter can actually help your business by gaining followers or those people that follow the tweets that you post. Think of Twitter as word of mouth about your business — you sign up for Twitter and find businesses that are similar to yours; in this case, let's say you're a web designer for hire. So you find other web designers. More often than not, when you start to follow someone, they will turn around and follow you.

    So every time you make a tweet — say a 25% off sale — people that are following you will get that notice. In fact, it is not uncommon for people that follow one group — let's say the first web designer you decided to follow — to also follow the person that group is following. So by following one person, you have now acquired ten new followers who decided to follow you as well. There's also the real time aspect of Twitter: someone can reply to your tweet about the 25% off sale or retweet it to their followers (basically telling their followers that you're having a 25% off sale).

    This is extremely beneficial, especially if you are looking for work. Now you have other businesses (who are following your followers or your followers followers) possibly sending you messages about the work you have done and (hopefully) if you'd like to do some work for them.

    Advertising on Twitter in no way means that you should just stick to Twitter. If you are a business, it is important to advertise on all of the social networks, Facebook included. In fact, many website businesses and companies will have pages for a number of the social networking pages and you should too. Twitter allows for more exposure to your business; hey even Hollywood is in on Twitter!