One of most overlooked but useful tools on Twitter is their list feature. Many of us use it for personal use to divide those we are following into manageable size digestible lists or even to secretly listen to those we may not “follow” publicly. Businesses, however, don’t always use this feature to its full advantage. Here are a few ways to incorporate Twitter lists into your social media strategy:
1. Organize your followers into lists that make sense for your business. For example, “customers,” “coworkers,” “potential customers,” etc. Or you can make it even more granular by dividing your customers according to their niche or according to how you would identify a customer group. For example, “prospective students in USA,” “prospective students international” “current faculty,” “academic departments,” “alumni” etc. By doing this, you can LISTEN to these groups separately, and create your content strategy
based on what you hear.
2. Create public lists that might be useful for your followers to subscribe to. If I am trying to attract prospective students, perhaps I should make a list of all the academic departments so that those followers (note: one of my target audiences, also put into a list) can really see and listen to what’s going on around the school. Clearly, this adds an easy bit of customer service to your Twitter account. Ask: what do my followers want from me, and what can I offer them? People use Twitter to curate content, news, etc. How can you help them do this?
3. Create a private list for competitors. This allows you to always check up on your competitors. What are they doing on Twitter? What can you gain by listening to them? Note, you do not need to follow your competitors to add them to a list.
Also note that Twitter lists are indexed by Google, so they can help your SEO. Use keywords for naming public lists.