Twitter_Body.jpgby Erin McDermott.

There’s a big world of social-media chatter out there with ideas for your small business—but are you listening in on the conversation?


This is the beauty of Twitter: You can curate those voices, adding just the essentials with the information that might benefit you most. Here, a look at eight Twitter streams that contain some wisdom to benefit your small business.




Brian Clark

He’s the Dalai Lama of online marketing techniques, and a must-read for small business owners who care about their digital presence. (He’s No. 5 on Ad Age’s influential Power 150 ranking.) His tutorials on everything from making your Web copy sing to SEO strategies to how to structure your site’s landing page are comprehensive, providing step-by-step guidance on engaging your audience. If you can admit that you have a problem with your marketing, here is the place to start.




Twitter_PQ.jpgClayton Christensen

Hearing the word “disruption” a lot lately? Christensen, a management guru, Harvard Business School teacher, and bestselling author of the watershed books Innovator’s Dilemma and How Will You Measure Your Life?, is likely the reason why. The rise of online education, new payment systems, and digital publishing all feed into his “disruptive technologies” theory that’s been the talk of Silicon Valley. His tweets are a barometer for industry changes that may be coming your way.



Melinda Emerson

This onetime TV-news producer struck out on her own to launch her own company, and became a pioneer of social-media marketing for small businesses. The Philly-based entrepreneur is a prolific tweeter, author of Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months, and hosts the weekly #smallbizchat on Twitter. She’s also a New York Times columnist and is especially known for addressing the challenges female entrepreneurs face.



Tony Wagner

If you’re concerned about the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovators, consider following Tony Wagner (here’s his recent TEDTalk.). His new bestseller, Creating Innovators, focuses on what skills today’s kids will need to succeed in a fast-moving, changing economy. His tweets look at developing the capacities of the young people who’ll be starting the businesses of tomorrow.



Lara Galloway

If you’re a mother and an entrepreneur, you might have two of the most demanding jobs you’ll ever love. This business coach (and Michigan mom of three) encourages females to pursue their passions and, above all, “find enough time to ‘do it all.’” Her work/life balance advice is practical and has a large following among “mompreneurs.”







The Kauffman Foundation

It’s the largest philanthropic nonprofit in the country dedicated to entrepreneurship. The Kauffman Foundation’s Twitter stream invokes news, research, educational outreach, and workshops for startups, with an eye on issues both global and local. Founded by pharmaceutical pioneer Ewing Kauffman (who also begat the Kansas City Royals), the organization’s tweets reflect the ups and downs of modern capitalism, with a focus on internal scholarship. 


Are you constantly trying to look around the corner at what’s coming next? The folks at might be of interest. Their job is to put the pieces together about what’s brewing among the pace-setters. An annual peek at their official prognostications will set you back $2,000. But through Twitter, you can check out their stream of the newest developments for free, including their fascinating monthly looks at mini-trends.




The Wall Street Journal’s Small Business department

One of the best-kept secrets about following news publications on Twitter: It often gets you around those pesky paywalls. And while you’re (ahem!) surely subscribing to The Wall Street Journal anyway, their Web-only Must-Reads daily feature is a handy shortcut to the best small business-related news and features from top magazines and newspapers around the world. Don’t have the time to scan the headlines at the sites you trust? Let these folks do it for you.