Running a small business (SMB) isn’t easy. Competition’s stiff and the successful daily operation of the business is a tough nut to crack. And that’s before you’ve even thought about interacting with your customers. Arguably the easiest way to do this, though, is on Twitter.

Twitter’s Small Business team did some research recently, punting a set of questions towards a group of 500 adults who are aware that they follow an SMB on the social platform. What they found was some pretty big stuff…

The research revealed that a staggering 96% of the survey panel had communicated with the SMBs that they’d decided to follow. Of those, 82% felt that the SMB ‘got the message’ after the communication had taken place.

Getting those all-important followers is a process; you need to encourage those who follow you, to encourage their followers to follow you too. Sounds more complicated than it is – just tweet stuff that you think people will naturally want to share. The poll showed that 70% of respondents retweeted (RT’d) an SMB because they liked their content. And if 70% of your followers like your content enough to RT it, 70% of their followers might in turn do the same. In fact, 68% said they’d interacted with an SMB because a friend had hit the retweet button.

Advertising is another good way to spread the news that you’re now tweeting – 34% said they’d followed an SMB after seeing an ad with their twitter handle included.

One of the best things about your business being on Twitter is that your followers will feel closer to you and more likely to be a customer – in fact, 72% stated that they’d be more likely to buy from the businesses they follow on Twitter in the future. That’s some pretty powerful stuff.

And to make sure that you know you’re getting it right, there’s even more powerful stuff available – in the shape of O2 Social Insights. It’s a new service that we’ve launched, in partnership with Twitter, which allows you to measure the success of your social media activity. You can even compare it to other SMBs in your region and sector. Right now, you can get £50 of credit to advertise your business on Twitter when you sign up for O2 Social Insights.

For more information on O2 Social Insights, head over to

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