Just why should marketers even consider using Twitter, you might ask? Easy…Marketing with Twitter is a good way to bring in additional traffic to a website. It is also good for helping a site retain loyal visitors.

Here are some tips for marketers when it comes to ‘twittering’:

Create a Separate Account For Each Website

Publishers with several websites may try to consolidate Twitter accounts but that is not a good idea. Each website should have a separate account for branding purposes. This is especially true if each website is in a different niche.

Personal Twitter accounts are a good starting point, but it should not be a substitution for having an account for each website.

Change the Default Background

The background on a users Twitter page should be changed to something other than the default. The same thing holds true for the avatar. The Twitter page represents a personality so it should be unique.

Backgrounds can be images one already has on the computer, or something simple can be designed in Photoshop or GIMP. If it's in the budget, there are services which design Twitter backgrounds. The key thing to keep in mind is to not have anything that's too cluttered.

Engage, Don't Sell

When using Twitter, one must seek to engage and develop a sense of community and not to be a salesperson.

The way to get more followers and to reap the benefit of those followers is to remain engaging by responding to users questions, posting useful information and tidbits as well as keeping up with those who follow the account. The wrong way to go about it would be to only post links to the target website, never following anyone, and using language that should be saved for sales pages.

Give Something Away

Holding a contest on a blog and promoting it on Twitter is a good starting point. Do remember though that giving away something doesn't always have to cost money. For example, an online store could “give away” coupon codes to its followers. A business consultant could “give away” advice. Blog owners could give away a promotional opportunity. A little creativity will go a long way in determining what to give away.

Avoid Automatic Direct Messages

Automatic direct messages, or auto DM's, may seem like a great way to increase a websites brand, but in fact they are a really bad idea.

The way it works is when an account receives a new follower, an automatic message is sent to that person with whatever text is specified. This is not a feature that comes from Twitter, users must use an external source to get this feature.

When Twitter was new this may have been a novel concept, but the problem is that the feature has been overused by spammers and others who just use it for promotional purposes. From a users perspective, receiving several messages per day saying “thanks for the follow, be sure to check out this website” can be annoying and perceived as spam.

Auto DM's have become such a problem that SocialToo, a Twitter enhancement website, disabled the auto DM from its services.

There are better ways to use Twitter that will actually lead people to be perceptive to the brand's message. Automatic direct messages should not be a part of anyone's twitter marketing strategy.

So is Twitter part of your marketing strategy? Why not start ‘tweeting’ for business and doing it in style?