One of the biggest advantages of online marketing, especially social media marketing, is that it gives small businesses access to a global audience at a minimum cost. Twitter, for example, is entirely free -- but it does come with some drawbacks, like the 140 character limit.
How much can you really say in 140 characters? Everything, if you do it right. Here’s how:
While it may seem like a curse, 140 characters is the perfect length for customers to read, understand completely, and -- most importantly -- remember.
Anyone can ramble on at length about what their business does. The 140 character limit forces you to say exactly what you mean, without meaningless marketing words like “excellent” or “virtually.” Customers generally get turned off when they can sense that they are being marketed to, so writing your business description in 140 characters can boost your credibility as well as make your business more memorable to potential customers.
What exactly does your business do? Who is your business perfect for? Why should customers pick your business over someone else’s?
The answers to those 3 questions will help you distill the essence of your online shop and your brand into a smart, unique business description -- but it will take a little work to fine tune your wording. Write out several 140 character answers to these questions, then ask your business team, customers, and even friends and family to honestly critique them. The most important questions to ask are “Is my description…”
Don’t forget small things that can set your business apart. Are you based in a ‘prestige city’ that evokes emotions, like London, New York, or Tokyo? Has your business won an award from an industry influencer? Are your goods handmade, ethically sourced, fair trade?
Let’s look at some quick examples of possible 140 character business descriptions that engage the reader and make the business memorable.
Say your online boutique offers handmade jewellery with a nerdy bent, and you’ve called it Geek Chic. What keywords both describe your business and would pique the interest of your ideal customer? You’ve already got several key elements that set your online store apart from other jewellery shops, as your items are handmade for a niche audience.
After writing several descriptions, you’ve come up with:
a) "Geek Chic offers handmade jewellery that shows your love of your favourite books, movies and comics. Let your geek flag fly!"
b) "Handmade jewellery for the geek girl in you. From Mockingjays to Mario Bros, boost your nerd cred while looking beautiful with Geek Chic."
Which description do you choose?
Both describe the business clearly and credibly, but the first could pertain to any jewellery business that is influenced by pop culture. The second business description offers specifics about what the business offers, exactly who it’s for, and why customers should choose Geek Chic.
140 characters doesn’t provide much room for lengthy description, but there’s hardly any room for error, either! Have fun, play with your short-and-sweet descriptions, and pick the business description that is most engaging and true to your brand. When in doubt, read over your business description and replace the name of your business with “Generic Company In My Industry.”
If your 140 character business description sounds like it could pertain to you and all of your competitors, narrow the field and
focus on what makes you, you!