Best practices for working with Twitter leads

Men are silhouetted against a video screen with an Twitter logo as he poses with an Samsung S4 smartphone in this photo illustration taken in the central Bosnian town of Zenica, August 14, 2013. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic (BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA - Tags: BUSINESS TELECOMS)

So you found a potential client with the help of LeadScanr – congratulations! Now all that’s left for you to do is offer your services, submit your work and get paid. You already know how to deliver your end of the bargain; but if you’re new to the field of lead generation on social media, you may not know the most effective ways of communicating with a potential client on these platforms.

That’s why we’d like to offer you some tips on how to lock down that first client. We’ll use Twitter as an example, since that’s where most of the leads in the current LeadScanr streams come from.

We’ll start from the very beginning: how to create your Twitter profile and how to make it look appealing to your potential clients.

Fill out your Twitter profile so it doesn’t scare away potential clients

Imagine you found a lead on Twitter and tweeted at them, offering your services. The client is intrigued by your offer, so they click on your username… only to be greeted with a blank, standard-blue profile with no tweets and a default egg profile picture.

Don’t ask your grandma to take a picture for your twitter profile

Don't ask your grandma to take a picture for your twitter profile

So the client makes the only appropriate decision in this case and ignores your message.

The client’s hesitation in this scenario is understandable: if a business owner doesn’t care enough to invest time into their Twitter profile, which they use to contact potential clients, they might not invest too much effort in other work they do. Plus, with all the Twitter bots and fake accounts that exist on the network, a blank profile doesn’t give much guarantee that there is a real person behind this Twitter account.

That’s why you as the business owner should be thinking about how your profile can showcase your brand identity and your services from the first glance. First and foremost, you should always have a customized profile image. If you’re a freelancer or an entrepreneur, your profile picture can be a professional headshot or a photo with your face clearly visible. If you run a small business, your profile image can show off your brand logo. The ideal image size for your profile picture is 400 by 400 pixels, so choose a square image for the best fit.

Next, you should pick a visually engaging, appropriate cover image. The best Twitter cover images work in tandem with the profile picture: they’re not too busy, they follow a similar colour scheme (especially important if you have branded colours; think Coca-Cola’s red and white palette), and contain minimal amounts of text. If possible, your cover image should also demonstrate your skills or show off your product. For example, if you offer graphic design services, your cover picture should reflect that and hold up to the highest design standards – no one would hire a graphic designer who can’t make their own Twitter page look appealing!

Perhaps the most important and often overlooked part of a Twitter profile is the Twitter bio. It’s a central piece of your Twitter page’s real estate which, if done right, can seal the deal for getting those social media leads and turning them into clients. The maximum length of a Twitter bio is 160 characters, which doesn’t sound like a lot, but it’s more than enough to show off the key facts, like the description of your business and its goals or your contact information. Twitter allows you to add one website URL in your profile, but you can also use the characters in your bio to add any other links your clients may find useful.

Create an engaging Twitter presence

Another red flag for a potential client is an empty timeline or a Twitter feed that consists solely of soliciting messages to other users. Your activity on the social network should show off your skills and knowledge as a professional. Therefore, the tone of your tweets should always be polite and courteous. Try to strike a good balance between tweeting about your personal and professional life, but never post anything that could be perceived as offensive or inappropriate.

Don’t be boring :)

Use your Twitter feed as a way to build your reputation as an industry expert: share links to informative articles or blog posts, participate in discussions with fellow professionals in your field, share advice from your personal experience. Don’t be too shy about sharing your work on the social network, but be careful not to devote too many tweets to self-promotion – your followers can get tired of tweets plugging your business and ignore your posts, which is the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve.

Finally, make good use of the ‘Pinned tweet’ option, which allows you to display one message permanently at the top of your feed. Use this space to display useful information, such as a link to your recent portfolio, a recent publication or a review of your work, or a (audience-appropriate) joke that shows off your personality as well as your knowledge.

Make it easy for potential clients to get in touch with you on Twitter

Starting a conversation with you should be as easy as pressing the ‘Reply’ button. Make sure your Twitter profile is public and you have opted to receive direct messages from anyone.

Keep the door open to the client

date: 2007/05/02 | release status: MR | release references: eri.JPG | date created: 2007:05:02

Monitor your direct messages and @mentions regularly, and reply to any questions or comments from other users – you never know which one of them might become your next client.

Check your new followers to see if they might be potential business partners, and don’t be afraid to say ‘Hello’ or to thank them for following you. Something in your profile interested them enough to follow you, so starting a conversation might go a long way in establishing that connection.

Include your contact information, like your email address, official website or other major social accounts, in your Twitter bio, for clients who may be more comfortable reaching out outside of Twitter.

Follow these rules and success in lead generation will follow, too. In our next blog post, we will go over some common mistakes you should avoid.

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