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A Comprehensive Guide to Twitter for Campus Bookstores

Posted by T.A. Nathan on 1/28/20 6:00 AM
Topics: campus bookstore, bookstore social media, twitter marketing for campus bookstores

What sets Twitter apart from other social media mediums is that it promotes user engagement with other users through quick messages or tweets. Twitter’s fast-paced stream of posts makes timing and quantity important factors in your profile’s success.

Twitter is most popular with those in their 20s, according to Sprout Social. This makes Twitter an excellent choice to use for promoting your campus bookstore.

“With Twitter, we also have a younger audience. There, things like humor, memes, GIFs and more casual posts do well,” Auxiliary Services Marketing Manager, GVSU Laker Store, Liza Guikema, said.

Twitter: A Comprehensive Guide for 2020

Create marketing goals for your campus bookstore

Although a single story won’t create a line out your door, a well-focused message could guide more customers your way. These marketing goals may change month-to-month, so revise your Twitter goals as often as necessary. Once you’ve written out a list of several goals, you’re ready for the next step.  

To get started:

  1. Evaluate your store’s greatest need.
  2. Develop a digital marketing strategy to support your overall efforts to meet this need.
  3. Develop specific tweets that will address this area.


Twitter marketing and posting guidelines

Tweeting is a fairly simple process, but optimizing your tweets for your target audience is a tad more difficult. Here are some helpful guidelines to follow when navigating the twitterverse. 

  • Post tweets often and stay relevant
    • Tweets have a very limited amount of time to capture your audience’s attention. Posting often ensures that your message reaches your audience during the time of day that they actively use Twitter.
    • It’s not an exact science. Every industry and every audience could vary on the best time to reach them. Some like to check in the morning, some in the evening and some check it throughout the day. You will need to experiment to find the best time to reach your audience.
  • Get creative and use a call-to-action
    • Tweet length was doubled in 2017 to 280 characters and with this extra space comes an opportunity for creativity.
    •  Include a clear call-to-action or verbiage that suggests readers take an action, such as visiting your website or going to your brick-and-mortar store. 
  • Retweets and mentions
    • Retweets are essentially reposting a tweet someone else wrote. This allows you to share information relevant to your audience without having to create a new post.
    • When responding to tweets, you should @mention the intended recipient. If you do not direct the tweet to them specifically, they will not get a notification that you replied. To do this type the @ symbol and then their Twitter handle. 
  • Use hashtags
    • Include a relevant hashtag in all of your tweets. This will associate your post with a stream of other tweets with the same hashtag. Doing so will expand your reach.
  • Use Twitter lists
    • Twitter Lists allow users to make a collection of similar users based around whatever subject they want. For example, you could create a list of your campus Twitter pages like sports teams, the campus and any student body Twitter pages. 
  • Integrate with your other social media
    • Display your Twitter handle on other social media sites so that your audience knows how to follow you.


How to promote tweets

Promoted tweets are presented to a select audience. More importantly, promoted ads are shared with users who aren’t already following your Twitter account to help expand your audience.


Twitter Promote Mode vs. Twitter Ads

Twitter Promote Mode is a way for businesses to promote their account by paying a monthly fee of $99. The first 10 tweets everyday are automatically promoted to your target audience. This will deliver your account to more people and build followers. Twitter suggests the average business will gain around 30 new followers and reach over 30,000 people through impressions per month.

Selecting Twitter Ads gives you a choice of ads directed towards a specific goal, such as brand awareness or audience interaction.


How to get started:

  1. Log into your bookstore’s Twitter account and go to Twitter’s Business Page. Select if you want to use Twitter Ads or Promote Mode. 
  2. Determine your business objectives. The goals of your posts will determine your ad focus. This is where your marketing goals come in. 
  3. Select the option that best fits your needs:
    1. Followers: Bring more followers to your Twitter page.
    2. Tweet  engagements: Promote likes, retweets and any other engagements. 
    3. Promoted video views: This promotes a gif or video tweet. This could be used for video advertisements you produce for your store. 
    4. Website clicks or conversions: Increase click-through to your website.
    5. Awareness: Your posts are spread to a wide audience.
    6. App installs: This is to promote your store’s mobile app. 
    7. App re-engagement: These are to promote app users to re-engage with your app.

In-stream video views: These are for placing ads before Twitter’s premium content partner’s videos.


Create or add posts to your content calendar

Content calendars give you a tangible way to put your posts into action. One of the most important ways to establish yourself in social media is to post consistently. Not only does this help the algorithm recognize your content as relevant in the digital space, it also provides your audience with fresh new information.

Whatever you decide for your schedule, stick to it. This gives your audience a designated time to expect the next piece of information to come their way. It also makes it easier for you to plan content in advance. We recommend that you determine the best posting frequency for your store based on your available content and resources.

Schedule your posts during peak usage hours through Twitter’s Ad Manager. For nearly all social media sites, the hours from around 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. are the most active. Exact times vary from day-to-day and will depend on your audience. 


Twitter Ads Manager

Twitter’s ads manager allows you to track your ads. From the campaign dashboard, you can view analytics on your ads impressions, click-through rates and the rate you’ve set per engagement. Reviewing the manager dashboard allows you to narrow down which ads are working well and which ones aren’t. 


Twitter marketing strategy

Now that you know how to market your campus bookstore on Twitter, it’s time to put it to good use:

 1. Create a Twitter account through the Twitter application on your smartphone.

2. Write out marketing goals for your tweets.

3. Make a content calendar and add posts to your schedule.

4. Prepare some of your tweets as ads to target a specific audience.

5. Assess your analytics and find which posts work better than others.

6. Create new tweets based on these findings and return to step 3-4.


Remember Twitter is about communicating with your audience, not just as an announcement board. Speak to people in the industry and community. Reach out to students and ask them questions like what type of merchandise would they like to see in your campus bookstore. With any social media platform, your level of engagement will determine your audience’s level of interaction.

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