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November 30, 2011

Carolina Janssen: Establishing Twitter in Germany

GIN4B visited Twitter’s headquarter in San Francisco and talked to Carolina Janssen who is responsible for German Localization & Support. Carolina just had her one year anniversary at Twitter, the social networking and microblogging service. Since then, Twitter grew from around 300 to more than 600 employees who are accommodated over four floors in an unimpressive building in San Francisco’s SOMA district. Before joining Twitter, Carolina went to San Jose State University where she graduated with a Master of Science in Mass Communications. She has always been fascinated by Silicon Valley’s drive for innovation which motivated her to move from her native Germany, where she studied literature, arts and media, to San Francisco’s Bay Area in 2008.

Carolina points out that Germany with its high internet reach and good economy is an important market for Twitter. “Still, Germans don’t know yet how to personally use and take full advantage of it”, she adds. We asked her to give us advise how to get started and what to expect when professionally using Twitter.

7 steps to get started and be successful on Twitter

  1. Chose an interesting handle. A user’s “Twitter handle” is the username they have selected and the accompanying URL, like so: https://twitter.com/lija.
  2. Build your brand by customizing your profile, background, avatar (the personal image uploaded to your Twitter profile) and bio (a short personal description of 160 characters or fewer used to define who you are on Twitter).
  3. Browse through Twitter and find out what similar businesses are out there and whom they follow. Follow those that might be of interest and valuable for your business.
  4. Now give users a reason to follow you (highlight what you will offer, include keywords that describe your brand, include the Twitter handles of known companies and personalities).
  5. Add Twitter (Follow and Tweet button) to your website: http://twitter.com/about/resources
  6. Ensure employees are on Twitter.
  7. Ensure best tweeting practices: share insider moments, be a resource for your audience, @Reply followers and sources, and most importantly tweet live!

Carolina adds that businesses in all industry sectors can benefit from Twitter. “Being present on a free media platform with a global audience makes it easy and efficient to raise awareness for a company, a product or a service. Information snowballs fast, spreading to a vast network of potential consumers.” Twitter can not only be used for marketing but also for customer support purposes and she recommends to set up different Twitter accounts for those. Carolina hopes that German companies experiment more with Twitter and discover its advantages. She’s happy to help and can be reached @lija or @hilfe or via linkedin: Carolina Janssen

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