Twitter Marketing Guide for Startups and Small Business

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If you’re looking to make an impact on Twitter and get more sales for your startup, then you’re going to want to learn Twitter marketing tactics and strategies to grow your business.

Twitter is one of the most popular marketing channels to build a relevant audience of followers, easily engage with your target audience(s) and generate leads for your startup or business.

This is a guide to Twitter marketing best practices and contains Twitter marketing strategies and tactics to help you build an awesome Twitter account with thousands of followers.

These best practices will enable you to drive a considerable amount of traffic to your website.

1) Create a Twitter Profile Worth Visiting

Your Twitter profile is a very important part of a cohesive Twitter strategy. Do it right if you want to get followers and become an influencer in your industry. Do your best to follow the guidelines below so you can drive traffic back to your site from your profile.

1) Banner

If you don’t already have a banner, you should create a banner for your profile that quickly describes your service/product, lists your website and social profile URLs, and even a great testimonial on there could go a long way.

Ideally, you want it to look graphically nice.  The more presentable and professional it looks, the more your brand authority will increase.

Quotes are okay to put on there as well if they’re highly relevant.

Check out Canva and you can make your own Twitter banner for free.

2) Profile Photo

You want to have a good profile photo of yourself or of your business logo.

It should definitely be high quality and not grainy at all.  If it’s a personal photo, SMILE with your eyes and teeth.

Some startups also like to have group shots of them as their default picture, but it’s advised to stick with your company logo. The dimensions are 400×400.

3) Profile Description

Create a searchable bio using keywords, yet simultaneously boiling down your startup into a sentence or two in its simplest explanation.

Don’t use hashtags in your profile description.

Hashtags are for conversations and your company description isn’t one.

Moreover, hashtags take people away from your profile when they click on them.  The words in your profile’s description are discoverable by Twitter’s search algorithm, anyway.

4) Pinned Tweets

The best practice here is to pin your top tweet to the top of your profile.  But your top tweet should also be the most relevant to your target audience.  Usually, the best one has the lead magnet of your free e-book or guide on it so they’ll sign up to your email list.

Pin a poll on your profile and for one week out of the month, you can conduct surveys/polls & hashtag them to broaden your outreach.  Polls only last for a maximum of 7 days.

It’s suggested to conduct polls only when your profile is generating thousands of visits per month.

You can see the number of profile visits you’re achieving by left-clicking the icon on the top menu bar once and selecting the analytics page.

You can find the polling option when you click on the icon to create a new tweet.  It will be on the bottom of the popup.

2) Tweeting

The tweets that work the best are tweets that add value to the end-user.

While conversations via replies on Twitter are good, distributing content is the most effective for marketing your business and enhancing the reputation of your brand.

Value is usually relayed through content marketing.

1) Types of Tweets

  • Video (gets the most impressions)
  • Images with text on them (also gets a lot of impressions)
    • Twitter has a 2:1 width: length ratio for images at a minimum of 200 x 100px, but most people create or add larger images.
  • Text with URLs to your content (medium efficacy)
  • GIFs
  • Regular text (this has the smallest impact in impressions).
  • Retweets

You should be mixing it up with all the different types of tweets for an optimal strategy.

2) Types of Content

  • Blog posts
  • Infographics
  • Memes
  • Picture Quotes
  • Video
  • Podcasts
  • Lists
  • Cheat sheets
  • Discounts/Sales

3) Characteristics of Content to Share

  • Entertaining
  • Interesting
  • Educational
  • Inspirational
  • Motivational
  • Insightful
  • Helpful
  • Useful
  • Funny

4) Thanking Followers for Following You

Thanking followers by tweet is extremely effective in increasing social proof, brand recognition for you, and brings in key influencers that will follow you…if you do it right.

It’s nice to feel appreciated, isn’t it?

Luckily for you, I have one of the best strategies to thank new followers which will drive in tons of new followers as long as you do it regularly.

This selfless technique also makes others want to follow you and engage with you so that you can personally thank them and advertise what they’re doing!

If these followers have large followings, then this strategy below will have astronomically higher value for you.

Follower Thanking Formula

Greet them, use their name and thank them for following, then say something complimentary about their Twitter profile, tweets, website, service, etc. including the link (if there is one), then use relevant hashtags at the end of the tweet.

Two examples of what the tweets could look like with a shameless self-promotion:

Example 1:

Hey Carl @CarlPotak thanks for following me. Great site helping #startups grow! #Entrepreneur #Founder #LeanStartup

Example 2:

Hey @ArtistReach thanks for following me. Awesome site for professional #musician & #talent development. #music.

This tweeting formula is an amazing way to start a Twitter account and get lots of followers.

The more you do it, the more exponentially you’ll grow your existing account.

It is incredibly selfless and extremely promotional at the same time without you having to promote your service/startup once.

It shows your good will when you’re essentially marketing someone else’s brand.

However, there’s going to be a point where so many people will follow you per day that you can’t individually thank every single one of them.

In that case, you should pick and choose the followers who are most relevant to your target niche.

Since your tweets stay in your account forever, unless you delete them, you will see that over the course of months that these tweets become increasingly relevant due to the nature of hashtag searches and aid to your account growing quicker.

Also, when you don’t immediately mention the twitter profile but greet first, the tweets go to a larger audience rather than just mentioning that user directly, which will decrease the impressions that tweet will get.

Mass Thanking Tweeting Strategy

When you’re in the position of having too many people to thank for following you per day, then you might also want to employ a mass thanking tweeting strategy.

It’s pretty simple and goes like this:

Thank you for following us @name @name @name @name @name @name @name @name @name and have an amazing day! #hashtag #hashtag #hashtag

5) Consistency is Key – Tweet Everyday

Tweet consistently because consistency is the key to your success on Twitter.

The best practice is to spread out your tweets throughout the day to get maximum efficacy, however, you’ll want to plan out your tweets so that the most important ones are between 12 PM – 2 PM, 5 PM, and 8 PM – 10 PM.

However, it’s important to combine tweets of your own, whether it’s original content, other people’s content that you tweet out, or retweeting content on Twitter.

Ideally, you should be doing between 8 and 80 tweets a day.  But the more you decide to tweet per day, the more challenging it becomes to introduce new content into the mix.

However, you tend to get incredible amounts of engagement the more you tweet per day.

Retweeting content from your followers and content relevant to your followers can help you achieve your goals.

In addition, people actually like reading content on weekends during the early afternoon and Sunday evenings as well.

Your consistency creates increased authority and thus will bring in leads and sales.

Essentially, you’re leading by example.

6) Hashtags

You want to use 10 to 20 hashtags that are most relevant towards your company’s target market.

Save those keywords.

Since you can’t use them all at once, you should pick between two and four hashtags to put into each tweet.

It’s important to use hashtags that are highly relevant to the content you’re posting and to the audience(s) that would want to know about that content.

3) Where to Find Content

  1. One way to find content to market is via Post Planner. It’s a great service that finds the best, most relevant content for your target audience and provides recommendations to you.
  2. Google Newsfeeds by topic
  3. Your own blog posts that you can split into social media messages via
  4. RSS Feeds from your favorite blogs
  5. Podcast episode lists from your favorite shows
  6. Your favorite Youtube episodes on a relevant topic to your target audience
  7. Relevant quotes found through search engines
  8. Make your own content
    1. Videos
    2. Podcasts
    3. Blog Posts
    4. Infographics
    6. Stories

4) Planning & Scheduling Your Content Via Automation

Take it a step further to automate and schedule your tweets using Lately AI, HootSuite, BufferSproutSocial, AgoraPulse, or Social Oomph among many others.

Your consistency will create authority.

It’s said that half of the battle in life is showing up.

In this case, tweeting is showing up.

Moreover, you show up by planning and automating your marketing with social media management services.

Below you will see descriptions with links to three of the top social media marketing and automation services:

1) Hootsuite is a favorite of many

It offers a good free option that allows you to connect up to 3 social media accounts and schedule your tweets.

2) Buffer is really good and very popular

You can connect up to one social profile per platform for free and allows you to schedule up to 10 posts per social profile in advance and you can have up to five social profiles connected. I especially love the Buffer chrome extension that allows you to curate content that you find while you’re reading it.

3) Sprout Social is another powerful social media management software suite

Its pricing is a bit lofty but has a very nice set of features.

While Hootsuite and Buffer allow you to have a free forever option, Sprout Social does not.

However, you can get a free 30 day trial for any of the paid options with no credit card required.

5) Twitter Following and Followers

For Twitter marketing, one of the best ways to get more followers is to follow back new followers.

Find between 20 and 50 accounts worth following (within your target niche) and follow them every day.

If they don’t follow you back within two to three days, then unfollow them and repeat this process.

You can use a tool to help you achieve this like crowdfire or tweepi and can find other similar tools here.

This way, it’ll be easier to keep track of who you’ve recently followed, who followed you back, and who didn’t.

By steadily following users every day, you’ll be able to expand your reach with your tweets, get more engagement, and build an even bigger following.

The results compound on themselves, so don’t give up if you don’t get results early on. It takes patience and commitment.

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6) Social Listening

Retweet & like the good content of followers and non-followers which you find by social listening (via your stream & by searches).

This is a great way for you to engage with your followers and stay on their radars.

Create and use Twitter lists of yours and others’ to identify more relevant leads / new followers, as well as your favorite existing followers.  It allows you to do more targeted social listening.

Twitter lists are kind of like your regular Twitter feed but it’s even better for Twitter marketing because it can be much more targeted towards specific types of users.

Subscribe to lists of other’s that you like.  When you do this you’ll be able to see the most recent tweets of the people on that twitter list.

7) Interacting with the Community


When you comment on very popular or trending tweets, and say something useful and/or insightful, then you’re going to start to generate followers and traffic to your profile. This will jumpstart the algorithm to start to show your account to other similar users who engaged with your comment.


Mention users using “@username” and tell them how great you think their articles/posts are and add in some relevant hashtags.

Mentioning users on Twitter is important because it directly engages with that user.

Engagement on Twitter means more visibility and more traffic coming to your profile, which, in turn, will lead to more clicks on your website URL listed in your profile and more clicks on your pinned tweet, which should include an outbound link going to your website.

Direct Messages

The best practice for this is to use direct messages for lead generation and relationship-building.

Try not to be too overly promotional.

Build connections with these individuals and talk like a regular person when messaging others.

Authenticity is better than sounding “overly professional” but you do want to still show that you’re an authority on your subject matter.

It’s pretty common to have an automated direct message, however.

Automated direct messages are great for sharing more of your company info, but they often won’t get the results that you want.

Most people don’t even read their automated messages because it’s spammy and especially if they’re long.

Twitter Spaces

Join and create Twitter spaces to get in on conversations about specific topics or create your own via voice.

They’ve made it like Clubhouse.


Replies are a great way to keep the “social” in social media marketing and twitter marketing in general, as it’s a completely public site.

Not as many people reply to tweets and have conversations via replies as they used to, though.

People might be too caught up in their own things.

However, people still do this and is great for engaging others.

8) Twitter Blue

Twitter Blue is a paid service you can sign up for through Twitter. They made it so that it increases your reach with your twitter marketing and also verifies your account so you’ll get that blue checkmark badge next to your account name. It does a whole lot more than that, though. It’s $8/month right now or $72/year.

As of the time this was written, they offer the following with Twitter Blue:

  • Edit Tweet
  • Bookmark Folders
  • Custom app icons
  • NFT Profile Pictures
  • Themes
  • Custom navigation
  • Spaces Tab
  • Top Articles (most shared articles in your network)
  • Reader mode
  • Undo Tweet
  • Prioritized rankings in conversations
  • Half ads (coming soon)
  • Longer Tweets
  • SMS two-factor authentication

This new paid service will definitely help your company’s influence grow quicker on Twitter — as long as you use its features!


This may seem like a good idea because it instantly boosts your followers to make you look like you’re already super popular. But this will, in fact, hurt your twitter marketing presence, because those “followers” will not be engaging with your tweets at all. Rather, they’re as good as useless and are dead weight on your account.

Doing things the hard way is…never easy – and there are no shortcuts for actual growth and establishing relationships with your followers.

It’s a lot better to see a lot of engagement with fewer followers than no engagement with a ton of followers. You would look quite lame to be tweeting and getting no engagement with 5k or 10k+ fake followers.


Here’s a TLDR summary of Twitter marketing best practices:

  • Create and use a good looking banner
  • Have a high-quality profile picture
  • Write a great profile description
  • Pin your best, most relevant tweet
  • Mix up your tweets with video, podcasts, articles, retweets, likes, replies, GIFs, quotes, and motivational.
  • Automate and schedule your tweets
  • Perform social listening and share content from your followers and industry-relevant subjects
  • Thank followers for following you
  • Interact and engage with folks on Twitter

Want some more awesome social media marketing strategies and tips? Yes? Check out 14 Startup Marketing Strategies to Use on Social Media. This guide will help you successfully do social media marketing on pretty much any platform.

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