Use Twitter To Answer Visitor Questions Just Like the Big Urban Destinations

by Joanne Steele on December 17, 2009

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Here is an easy to implement tip for using Twitter for small tourism towns to directly communicate with your customers and answer their questions.

Thanks to Sheila Scarborough and Becky in their December Tourism Currents newsletter, I was reminded of a Twitter technique that is made for small town tourism destinations.

twitterCommunication through twitter is so fast paced, it is easy to miss important questions and communications from your visitors, the people you set up your Twitter account to talk with!

#Hashtags are the answer. They group tweets on a specific topic so that they are much easier to follow. Set up a hashtag for your town, and post it prominently on your web site as a place people can go to ask questions.

Check out how the Portland Online Visitor Center has set up their Twisitor Center. Go to #inpdx to look at what their hashtag page looks like.

If you’ve been dragging your feet about Twitter, get busy and set up your Twitter account. Check out this post where I directed you to Clyde Boom’s free easy to understand 7 day video course to learn how.

Next, here’s how to set up a #hashtag for your destination on Twitter. Figure out a short tag for your town to include with the #. Remember your visitors only have 140 characters including your hashtag to ask their question, so keep it short.

Tweet an introduction to your new hashtag. – something like, “Have questions about Friendlyville – Ask or comment use #fvle.” Set up your own twisitor center on your home page, instructing visitors how to use your new hashtag.

Then, to access you Twitter hashtag, go to search.twitter.com and type in your hashtag – ex: #fvle. It will show all the latest tweets using your hashtag.

Use rss feed to easily access all new tweets without having to return to Twitter over and over throughout a day. Click the rss symbol on the results page for your Twitter search, and follow the directions for your own feed reader.

If you haven’t set up a feed reader yet, Google has an easy solution. Go to your Google Account, and click on “Reader” on the upper left. Follow the easy directions and your set.

The Internet is all about giving our customers multiple ways to communicate with us. This is just another simple method.

1 Sheila Scarborough December 27, 2009 at 5:35 pm

Thanks for the Tourism Currents shout-out; we’re glad that we helped to spark some ideas for you!
#YouAreAwesome :)

2 Joanne Steele December 28, 2009 at 5:35 pm

Thanks Sheila! It’s exciting to be able to use the tremendous power of the Internet to share ideas and provide multiple places for busy business owners to learn new ways to improve their small businesses. A happy and prosperous New Year to you!

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