By Jonathan Bird, Managing Director, Warehouse Dating. Follow Jonathan on Twitter

Communicating in 140 characters can seem like quite a limited and foreign concept for people new to the “twitterverse”, but Twitter offers a very unique way to communicate with both your existing customers and potential new ones.

1. Be active. Twitter can be a fantastic asset to your marketing department provided you are an active participant. Give your followers a reason to check your feed every day and see what has developed for your business.

2. Incorporate hashtags into your tweets. Hashtags can be used as something in common for your business and your audience to retweet and keep the conversation going. The more people who use the tags in their tweets and retweets, the more it trends and by extension, the more people see it. You can also use a currently trending hashtag to insert yourself into the conversation, provided it is smartly done and relevant to your business, people will respond. This is fantastic for getting your name and brand out there.

3. Use visual media. Pictures, videos and GIF's increase the response rate and the likelihood of your tweet getting a response via a reply, retweet, favourite or all of the above. Some kind of imagery is far more likely to not only catch the eye of a twitter user, but also gain their attention enough for them to actually read what you are tweeting.

4. Seek out similar accounts to your own. By following Twitter accounts that are run by other people in your industry and those of your clients, will create additional awareness for your own account if they already have an established following of people with shared interests. By extenstion, if any of these people decide to support you by retweeting your tweets your tweets so that they are seen by everyone that follows them.

5. Brand your account. Use your company logo as your profile picture, customise your background and theme to further advertise your brand. You should also include a small bio about your company and link to the website in your profile.

6. Increase cross-traffic. Placing a link to your twitter account on your website, blog, other online sites and even your email signature to you get as much visibility for it in as many places as you can. The more people that see it the better.

7. Give people a reason to follow you. Twitter exclusive promotions will make all your existing followers happy to be following you in the first place, and providing the promotion is relevant to other people they know, they will advertise the promotion for you, telling them they should follow you to take advantage of it.

Twitter can be a very powerful tool for any business, provided it is used correctly. Keep your account active and interact with people as much as you can to increase not only the visibility of your brand, but also the business' reputation as a company that interacts with people.