Twitter unveiled its long-awaited lists functionality in 2009, and this has given both private and business users much greater power over how to organise information on the popular microblogging service. As a business owner, you’re probably wondering how you can turn Twitter lists into money. While their application is more useful for personal feed organization, you can use (read: abuse) lists to improve your visibility on Twitter.
What are lists?
Lists, in a nutshell, are “groups” of feeds. You can follow a list without following all of the people on it, which makes it easy to get a snapshot of what people in a certain industry are all talking about at one time without suffering information overload. You can keep your friends and your competitors separate, and it makes it easier to sift out context-specific information. Lists can be formed according to the people you follow, or topics that people are talking about.
To get on lists, you have to use them
Obviously, as a business, you will want to be on lists more than you use them yourself. You probably already follow a hundred or so people, so lists will be very useful to organise all of these feeds. However, the main point of this article is how to use lists to promote your business. Fortunately, lists make it easier to get more followers, or at least to get your tweets out to more people.
The first thing you’ll need to do is seek out lists that are relevant to your industry and follow them. Interact with those people, and you might find yourself automatically added to lists by people who make them.
If this isn’t happening, then the best way to get yourself onto twitter lists is by personal arrangement. You simply approach someone you already have a casual Twitter relationship with and say “you make a list and put me on it, and I’ll make a list and put you on it”. You then each promote your respective lists by tweeting it to your followers, and you’ll all of a sudden be on a list that a few more people are following.
If you keep repeating this, and try to get on as many lists as possible, you can quickly extend your twitter reach far beyond your own small gathering of followers. You might not even know how many people you are reaching.
The benefit of being on lists that are relevant to your area of expertise or your industry is that you know that all of the people following that list are interested in the types of discussions that happen amongst members of that list. You get access to a more targeted audience, without having to cultivate all of those relationships yourself.