140 Characters Epiphany: AHAs that Will Make You Jump on Twitter Marketing Today

  • 2
  • November 17, 2016

140 characters

Can you really drive sales in just 140 characters? It’s a legit question.

You may think Twitter isn’t the easiest platform to understand, and I tend to agree with you.

In fact, that’s exactly Twitters own internal growth problem compared to Facebook.

But stop and think about this for a moment…

You’re probably spending an average of 27 cents per click on Facebook to drive traffic your website, according to AdEspresso.

That means for just 100 clicks to your website a day, you’re going to spend over $25. And the cost of Facebook ads is only going up.

You may scoff when you read the next paragraph, but bear with me. You’ll soon have an epiphany on how 140 characters can become your best friends.

I’m about to show you exactly why you don’t need to spend a dime to get over 100 website visitors a day from Twitter. (Maybe even more – I send 500+ visitors to a day to our site for free from Twitter).

But you don’t need to take my word for it.

I’ll share the AHA moments about Twitter marketing from entrepreneurs just like you from our in our FREE Facebook group. In just 14 days, they we were able to make tweaks – some minor, some major – that make a world of difference.

We’ll hear from Peter Wheaton, who got $10K in sales from Twitter before he was even done with the Twitter Marketing That Sells Challenge.

You’ll also hear about my friend Brandon Moskwa, who got invited – all expenses paid – to the IBM Amplify conference. He was also invited to take part in their futurist program. All this just from IBM finding him on Twitter.

In fact, check out what Beverly Walthour (@beverlywalthour) said in the Challenge Facebook group. “For me, using Social Quant was my introduction to Twitter. I had NO clue how to use it for business. As a matter of fact, I was told it’s almost impossible to get business in 140 characters! Oh, how WRONG that person was!” We’ll hear more from Beverly in the later in the post, but she definitely hit the nail on the head here!

So let’s take a quick preview at what we go over in each day in the trial. You’ll get a first-hand look at the many AHA moments participants have shared with us over the past few months.

Day 1 – How to Get More Twitter Followers

how-to-get-more-twitter-followersSuccessful Twitter marketing all starts with having a targeted, relevant, and large following. In fact, you’re following should NEVER stop growing. Your new followers are your new leads you’ll be marketing to. If you don’t keep gaining followers, you’re not getting people into your sales funnel. Not a great recipe for success.

Day 1 of the challenge teaches you how to grow your Twitter following and keep getting leads into your sales funnel. If this step isn’t nailed down, the rest of the 13 days will be practically useless.

But there’s other reasons having a large, engaged following that might not be so obvious. This is one of our favorite stories from one of our customers, Branden Moskwa (@bmoskwa) of

Branden’s Twitter account focuses on eCommerce. Because of his large following and the engagement he was getting, he was rewarded with a huge opportunity from IBM.

IBM has a futurist program centered around the #NewWaysToEngage hashtag. It examines the future of social with insights and predictions from external thought leaders. Because his large following and engagement levels, IBM asked Branden to be one of those thought leaders.

IBM contacted him by email and invited him to the IBM amplify conference, all expenses paid. They’ve paid for him to attend other eCommerce conferences. How awesome is that?!

But the biggest advantage of building your Twitter following is getting people into your sales funnel. Remember, this process is all about turning your Twitter followers into business dollars.

140 characters aha momentOne of our challenge participants, Nathan Segal (@nathansegal) said this in our private Facebook group:

“It’s been an interesting ride. Just as I hit 2,000 followers, I wound up on a couple of consulting calls through my Twitter connections. What is cool is how many people are connecting with me on Twitter and asking me to contact them. There’s no question that the 14-day challenge has made a noticeable difference and it’s clear that as my contacts grow, so will the engagement.”

Day 2 – How to Make an Awesome Twitter Cover Photo


In Day 2 we explore how and why it’s so important to have a great Twitter cover photo for your profile.

When you’re actively following accounts you want to connect with, the first thing people do is check out your Twitter profile page.

And what’s the biggest piece of real estate on your profile page? You guessed it – your cover photo.

We all know Twitter moves fast. Think of your cover photo as a billboard on the highway. You’ve only got a few seconds to grab people’s attention and get your message across.

This is one of the most common topics of discussion in the Facebook group. Most people have a lot of room for improvement with their cover photo. The group provides awesome feedback to help each other.

140 characters aha momentThe following is one of my favorite transformations I’ve seen from feedback in the Facebook group.

It started when Paul Martin (@impaulcmartin) from Knackhaus asked for feedback when updating his Twitter cover photo. This was what he first posted in the group:


After some feedback about the text overlay, Paul came back with this updated version and showed the group:


The consensus feedback from the group was that the new text overlay looked great, but the story board image from the original better represented his brand.

The finished product ended up like this:


What a difference from the original, right?! I personally love the way Paul’s cover photo turned out.

Day 3 – How to Choose a Great Twitter Profile Picture

140 characters twitter profile picIn Day 3, we discuss how to pick a great profile picture. Let’s get one thing out of the way right now. Don’t be an egghead.

Twitter defaults to an egg until you set your profile picture. Make changing that one of the first things you do.

For big brands, it’s makes sense to use a logo as your Twitter cover photo.

But for solopreneurs – and even some small businesses – we recommend a smiling head shot facing the camera.

People do business with people they know, like and trust. Using a head shot as your profile pic can go a long way in establishing this.

140 characters aha momentChallenge participant Heath Davis Havlick (@HeathDHavlick) of had this AHA moment about her profile picture:

 “There are multiple great things I’ve learned, but I’ll pick a basic one: changing my Twitter bio and avatar. Just doing some rewording and changing my logo to a headshot as my avatar has already brought in more followers organically. I’d been gaining and losing the same number of followers for months and couldn’t figure out how to fix it, and just in the last few days I’ve broken that cycle! I’m blown away.”

Day 4 – How to Create a Rocking Twitter Bio

140 characters twitter bioIn Day 4, we talk about how to create your Twitter bio to get you more followers.

Just like your cover photo, potential followers are going to check out your bio when deciding to follow you or not.

You have 160 characters to make an impression. Make them count. Be personable. Tell people what your account is about and include some info in your bio to humanize yourself or your brand. This is the kind of stuff that makes people want to connect with you.

140 characters aha momentImre Gábor (@aionhill) of AionHill’s AHA moment is an awesome tip for your Twitter bio:

“One big AHA moment for me was not to use hashtags in Twitter Bio because they are often clicked instead of the website link. This proved to be important because thanks to this tip the number of our website clicks increased indeed.”

The reason you don’t want to use hashtags in your bio is they are CLICKABLE. If people get to your bio and click on a hashtag, they’ll be taken away from your profile page. Once that happens, it’s  unlikely that they’ll be back. That’s a missed opportunity for a new follower or a click through on your pinned Tweet – which we’ll get to next – or both!

Day 5 – How and Why to Pin a Tweet

140 characters twitter pinned tweetThis lesson is up there with Day 1 in importance. Just one quick change on your Twitter account can make all the difference in the world – pin a Tweet!

Let’s continue on our journey across your profile page. Users will typically go from your cover photo to your bio, then to your first Tweet. Make that your money Tweet!

It only takes a second to pin a Tweet. There’s absolutely no reason not to. In fact, here’s 10,000 reasons why you’ll definitely want to do this…

140 characters aha momentRemember in the introduction I talked about Peter Wheaton (@peterwheaton) of  Petton Lifestyle – the guy with $10K in sales? As you can see from this post, his pinned Tweet is directly responsible for those leads and sales:


Pretty powerful stuff, right?!

Day 6 – How to Create an Effective Twitter Content Strategy

140 characters twitter content strategyOnce you’ve got an awesome cover photo, bio, and pinned Tweet, it’s time to start your content strategy. It’s time to start Tweeting!

140 characters aha momentJake Giambalvo (@TempstarStaff) of TempStar Staffing really says it all in his AHA moment:

“For me, the biggest two things that got me going “AHA” when taking the TMTS Challenge were how/when to tweet and what to tweet (apologies for the novel I’m about to write below).

“Since the time I’d been tweeting for my company’s Twitter account, I’d kept our tweets per day between 6-8, which created very little engagement and abysmal impressions. Before doing this challenge, I pushed to tweet roughly 12-14 times a day, slightly below double that amount. While that increased our impressions and engagement a bit, it still wasn’t working out quite right.

“After going through most of the challenge, I decided to take things further and double our daily tweets again from 12 to 20-26. Since I started doing that, our average impressions increased from 1.2k to 2.2k and rises daily. It will probably surpass 3k or 4k within the next couple of weeks.

“I’ve also seen a huge daily increase in engagement along with high impressions as a result. Over the last week and a half, I’ve increased our total engagements since June by 50%. Our total retweets have doubled.

“What to tweet: I was always under the impression that tweeting the same thing twice was bad. I was way wrong! Tweeting the same thing multiple times over the course of a few weeks has returned consistent engagements and has brought new faces and followers onto our Twitter.

“Coupling all of that with Social Quant (fantastic by the way), our overall performance on Twitter Analytics have seen pretty dramatic increases. 116% tweet increase; +81% impressions; +173% profile visits; +40% mentions; +180% Twitter followers.”

What’s even more exciting is that our big data shows that as you Tweet more often, something interesting happens. The number of link clicks back to your website not only increases, but increases exponentially. Our data shows us that the top 20% of traffic drivers are Tweeting 6-7 times more often. BUT it also shows they are driving 40+ times more traffic than the other 80%!

Again, this is all based on data we’ve collected from connecting more than 15,000,000 users on Twitter. For a more detailed analysis of this data, check out our State of Twitter Address post on Kim Garst’s blog.

Day 7 – How to Share Your Own Content on Twitter

140 characters twitter tweetsIn Day 7 we go over how to set up a consistent system of Tweets that will drive traffic back to your website. The best part is this is mostly automated so it’s really not that much work for you.

140 characters aha momentSherry Dyck (@ysocialmediaca) says, “My AHA moment is SocialOomph. I have used Hootsuite for some time (on/off) but this tool is way better for my needs.”

What Sherry is talking about is the an awesome feature of SocialOomph. It allows you to set up Tweets linking back to your evergreen content that will be repeated as often as you like forever. This is a powerful tool that’s explained in detail in Day 7 of the Challenge!

Day 8 – How to Share Curated Content on Twitter

140 characters twitter curated contentThis is one of the most popular days in the Challenge. We get tons of feedback on this day in the Facebook group.

In Day 8 we go over how to use other people’s content to get leads on Twitter. This is super helpful to people just getting started in digital marketing who don’t have a lot of original content yet.

140 characters aha momentZsuzsanna Scheidl (@sdl_design) of sdl design says, “Since I’m quite new in business and my account is just taking off, I had quite a lot of AHA-moments in these 14 days! One of the most important ones would be that even if you are brand new and don’t have a lot of content yourself, you can use other people’s content to generate leads via, how cool is that??? :D”

And Zsuzsanna is not alone. We’ve gotten a ton of feedback that people in the Challenge love!

Day 9 – How to Use Twitter Lists

140 characters twitter listsIn Day 9, we go over what Twitter lists are, how to create them, and why you’ll need to use lists to manage your Twitter marketing.

Lists are essential in organizing your Twitter account to be able to connect with influencers, leads, and so much more.

140 characters aha momentSteve Mullen (@getleadify) of Leadify says, “With regards to Twitter lists, I’ve just started a list and called it “We Want To Work With You” – it’s kinda fun but the idea is that everyone we add to this list will get a notification that we added them to a list called “We Want To Work With You.” This was inspired by Day 9 on the #TMTSChallenge, and you know what? With just 9 folks added to the list, one has enquired, and now become a prospect!”

Beverly Walthour (@beverlywalthour) told us, “From learning how to use lists and learning to ‘listen’ on Twitter, I’m not only increasing the number of engaged followers EVERYDAY, I’m building business relationships as well!”

Day 10 – How to Leverage Twitter Notifications

140 characters twitter notificationsDay 10 talks all about how to leverage Twitter notifications to engage with your followers that are engaging with you. By keeping up with Tweet activity and engaging back with those accounts that are connecting with you, you’ll build relationships on Twitter that you can nurture into leads and eventually sales.

In this day, we go over lots of ways you can quickly and easily use the notification on Twitter itself to provide value to your followers.

You’ll also need to keep up with notifications for your business account for customer service purposes. If someone reaches out to your business, regardless of its positive or negative, you’ll want to always answer. If you’ve ever reached out to a brand on Twitter and got nothing in return, I’m sure you understand why this is important.

The big takeaway from this lesson is the best way to turn your Twitter followers into business dollars is to consistently engage with them, especially those that are already engaging with you and show up in your notifications.

Day 11 – How to Use Twitter Advanced Search to Find Business

140 characters twitter advanced searchDay 10 discusses how to engage with the accounts that are already engaging with you. In Day 11, we explore how to take engagement to the next level with Twitter Advanced Search.

Advanced Search is a powerful tool provided by Twitter that allows you to actively listen to conversations taking place on the platform. This affords you opportunities to reach out and start to engage with other users first.

140 characters aha momentIn the lesson, you’ll also hear how I accounted for seven figures in sales for my online office supply store that has since been sold, just from using these techniques on Twitter. I even share a story about how they got a $27,000 order just by listening to conversations on Twitter and jumping in to the conversation at just the right time!

Once you embrace the power of social listening on Twitter and work it into your daily routine, the results can be astounding!

 Day 12 – The Power of Twitter Analytics

140 characters twitter analytics“What isn’t measured cannot grow.” This is one of my favorite sayings from Mike that I’ve heard more times than I can count, but always hits home. If you’re not monitoring you’re progress with your Twitter marketing, you’re missing out on opportunities and ways to improve. It’s that simple.

In Day 12, we go over how to leverage the analytics that Twitter provides for you to really see under the hood and find out what’s working for you and what’s not.

Now, you can go through your own Twitter feed and see the number of Retweets and Favorites a Tweet has gotten – and those things are important – but that’s only half the story when it comes to measuring your Twitter marketing effectiveness.

In this lesson, we go over the ways you can dig deeper and learn more about how you should be managing your Twitter account for maximum results.

140 characters aha momentHeath Davis Havlick (@HeathDHavlick) says, “I’ve known about Twitter analytics forever but have NEVER NOTICED there were any tabs besides the home page! Well, now I know! So then I got adventurous and clicked the “More” tab. Good gracious – there’s a whole new world of analytics to explore.”

Heath is definitely right when she says there’s a whole new world to explore! Apply the lessons from this day and you’ll have a much more focused, effective Twitter marketing presence for your business.

Day 13 – How and Why to Do Twitter Chats

140 characters twitter chatsIn Day 13, we talk about what Twitter chats are and how they can benefit your business.

A Twitter chat a group of people coming together on Twitter to have a conversation around a topic they share an interest in. You can see and join in the conversation by following the chat’s hashtag, which everyone participating will be using in every one of their Tweets.

Chats typically last for one hour and are in a question and answer format where everyone is invited to give their thoughts on the question and discuss ideas with each other.

Whatever your industry, chances are there’s a Twitter chat that’s relevant to you. There are several directories of Twitter chats online for you to find great chats for you to join.

Participating in chats is a great way to connect with people who are in your target market. It’s a super easy way to start making connections fast with live conversations. These are also a great way to showcase your expertise in your industry and establish yourself as a thought leader to the chat participants.

Day 14 – How to Use IFTTT Recipes and Wrapping Up

140 characters twitter IFTTTIn Day 14 we wrap up the challenge and talk about a fantastic tool called IFTTT, which stands for If This Then That.

IFTTT is a free tool that allows you to create automated recipes that automate Twitter actions based on rules you set up. So what can you do with IFTTT?

You can set up a recipe to add people to a Twitter list based on what they’re doing on Twitter. For instance, you can create a rule that if someone mentions your account, it will automatically add them to a Twitter list.

So why would you want to do this? For one, having people that are already mentioning you consolidated in one place, this will help you keep up with people who already know you and allow you to easily keep engaging with them to build a relationship.

Also, if you set these lists to public, people are going to get a notification that you’ve added them to a list. Get creative with the name of the list so they get a cool notification. For instance, if you add people that mention you to a list called “Tweeps That Rock” and someone mentions you, they’re going to get a notification saying, “[Your name] added you to list People That Rock.” Pretty cool, right?

In this lesson, we go over other cool things you can do with IFTTT and exactly how to set recipes up!

Final Thoughts

Wow, it’s been quite a journey! It’s a big part of our mission here at Social Quant to help businesses and solopreneurs to learn to use Twitter as an effective, low-cost marketing channel.

This is why we put together this free Challenge and really encourage anyone interested in expanding their business through Twitter to participate.

If you’ve been through the Challenge – or plan to – we’d love to hear in the comments any AHA moments YOU’VE had.

Cheers and see you around the Twitterverse!

140 charachters infographic

Author David Boutin

David is the Social Quant content Gatekeeper AND Keymaster, as well as a customer relations specialist.Follow and Connect with David on Twitter. 

More posts by David Boutin
  • Philipp Kowalski

    Wow…. what an amazing article. Of course I tweeted about it 🙂

    Being a SQ customer I already know the power of your tool and having read Mike’s book, this 14 days challenge is the perfect content upgrade. Made me immediately sign up for it…

    • Love to hear this! Glad you liked the post and thanks for sharing 🙂

  • WhatArmy

    One of the most comprehensive write-ups on Twitter growth strategy. Have signed up for he 14 days challenge. Let’s see how many AHA moments we are able to capture!

    • Thanks so much for reading and commenting! Hope you enjoy the 14 day challenge – tons of great info in there! Don’t forget to join the Facebook group too 🙂