When promoting your brand, it’s very important to be sure that you’re aiming your promotion at the right people. For the purpose of social media, this doesn’t really mean limiting your efforts towards people who fit in whatever your business’s demographics are. Rather, it means identifying “power” social media users and targeting them.
To do this, you can use a website like Topsy, to search for terms relating to your business. When you see relevant tweets, you can identify users who have many followers who seem to be interested in things relating to your business, or maybe your business specifically. Then you can follow them and invite them to follow you back. If you get a higher percentage of these power users among your followers, then there’s a better chance of more and more people seeing your retweets.
You can also target these power users for those contests and discounts. You don’t have to exclusively offer them to people with a huge social media presence, but including them frequently will give your brand a lot more exposure.