Twitter is an amazing little idea that has changed on-the-fly communications worldwide. It's basic premise of posting a status message of 140 characters or less was designed for those using cell phone with text messaging capabilities to let their friends know what they are doing or where they are. Yet Twitter has grown from a simple platform of status message communications to that of a full enterprise development opportunity through networking among followers and followers of followers. As a complimenting tool to social networks like FaceBook and MySpace, Twitter gives online marketers a hand up on viral communications. And, this viral communications has given rise to a whole wealth creation process of information and opportunity distribution.
Now a days, anybody who has a product or service of substance can make money by using Twitter. And the cost of doing business using Twitter is minimal, needing only a free Twitter account, a website (in some cases you don't even need a website), and limited knowledge of how to use social media to aid in your promotional efforts. I have known a few people who simply used their i-phone and an affiliate links system to earn money without even having the need to be 'online' or using a computer.
Here are some tips on how to use your Twitter account to earn a living through affiliate marketing programs that are easy to set up and start earning an income.
1) Start building a quality following of people that you find interesting. These are individuals who are not continually promoting some product or service every time they Tweet. Ideally, your best followers are those who have something positive and engaging to say, who have legitimate business interests, and a large contact list (follower list). This is not to say that you do not want to add people who have small followings on Twitter, as those may be as quality of leads as someone who has tens of thousands of followers but very few quality leads, i.e. Twitter list builders using automated Twitter add software to build their following.
2) Do not become a Twitter billboard by only being known for posting advertisements every post you do. This is one of the fastest ways to be UN-followed by people who are looking for more engaging interaction with those they follow. Get to know your followers through direct messaging, reposts, and interaction using the Twitter tools you are provided People tend to trust those they know over those they do not. If you are familiar to your followers for having great content (tweets) and being seen as smart in the area of your Tweet expertise, when it comes time to share something with them, they will be more apt to respond positively to your offer or to promote what you have to offer to their following. Again, avoid plastering people with advertisements lest you be seen as a Twitter Spammer and un-followed.
3) Market products and services that your followers need. The only way to do this is to know what they are interested in. The only way to know what they are interested in is to observe what they are posting about, discover what they are passionate about, and ask what their greatest need is. If you know the needs of those around you and seek to meet those needs, you will become the source they will turn to when they have a need - whether that need is information, services, or products. As an example, if you are a real estate appraiser, see that you post helpful information about your industry that helps realtors in their job, then when it comes time to find an appraiser, they will visit your 'appraiser network website' to find an appraiser in their area through your website. Ultimately, knowing the needs of your followers simply comes down to research, whether you visit their Twitter profile or ask them directly. Research rules!
4) Twitter is not about quantity, but the quality of your relationship with people. There are lots of tools to add people to your twitter account automatically, and these tools will enable you to build a following in a relatively short period of time. But, keep in mind that it is the quality of leads one has that makes money and not the quantity of leads you have. I would much rather be following ten thousand people personally, and have 100 followers that trust what I have to say and that I can depend on for information and assistance in their area of expertise who will take my advice and buy from me what I have to offer when I suggest something, rather than to have 10,000 followers who barely know I am there because they have added my through automation and have no idea who I am or what I am doing. Yes, maybe having just sheer numbers of people is potentially profitable if you can get enough of them to look at whatever you are offering, but keep in mind that like any contact list, you must nurture it, refine it, and learn to properly harvest it for financial success if you want to make a living using it.
5) Spend 10 minutes a day building and maintaining your Twitter account and followers list:
- Follow interesting people who are in your industry or share your passion. You can do this by visiting their Twitter profile.
- If they have a FaceBook account listed on their Twitter profile, request them as a friend on your FaceBook. In the meantime, write them a message on FaceBook letting them know you are following them and let them know you hope they might follow you if they are adding people they follow to their twitter account.
- Promote your followers to others through re-tweeting their posts, sending direct messages to them as encouragement so they can become familiar with you.
- Learn something new about your followers that you can use as a point of conversation with them on Twitter. This will get you noticed to their followers as they begin to post your Tweets and re-tweet you as the relationship grows. This will in turn build your followers list even faster of people that are interested in what you have to say. The key here is to be engaging them in their area of interest or passion.
- One sure way to build rapport with those you follow or who are following you is to visit their Website and if they have a re-tweet option for the article they have posted, re-tweet the article for them. This only takes 30 seconds to do. Then immediately direct message them and tell them you just re-tweeted the article to your followers, and really appreciated what they had to say in that article. This builds HUGE rapport. Of course, I don’t recommend that you promote articles that are without substance or that are not what you would feel of interest to your own followers. But, when provided with a good article, by all means, promote it to your followers. Your followers will appreciate it as well. Once a person of interest is following you, be sure to re-mention any article posts they send you that you have already read and re-tweeted yourself. This will generate huge favor with them and allow you to become a well respected online marketing peer. This leads to greater opportunity to do business with them in the future.
As you learn to capitalize on the power of Twitter as not only a lead generation tool, but an effective communication and sales tool, you will see whatever business or enterprise you are involved with grow as you become known by your follows as a legitimate voice on the Internet amidst all the clutter and noise that is found online and in social media networks.