How to win business & influence customers- Part 2- using Twitter
In the previous post, I listed 5 points. These mostly listed the protocol that you need to follow when you are on Twitter. Here are 5 more points to chew- how to have a loyal following, who to follow and how to engage, retain and win customers:
6. Quality of tweets not quantity
- Unless you are in a business where you disseminate content AND people opt in to consume your content AND rely on real time information, (like @business88 or any news channel or stock market operator), sending too many tweets might piss off people. Like in real life, brevity and frugality is the key when it comes to establishing authority
- You can retweet (that is- send the same message again), if you think it is really relevant, but keep some time between the tweets, ideally a couple of hours. Use for a really good link, resource or even an announcement of breaking news
- Don’t repeat the same message too many times though. Might be viewed as spam, can cause irritability, and will result in no-follows (people opt out of your network)
7. Use the right apps
- I think Twitter by itself is very limited in applications. But there are hacks and tools available that can help you find, segment, feed and maximize the potential of that application. There are quite a few, and sometimes it can become quite time consuming to choose the right one for the right approach. I use few, and I’m listing 3 here- your social media optimization company could be using others OR ones developed on their own:
- Twellow: Twitter is quite limited by itself in its search functionality. This tool helps in finding the right people- segmented by industry and sorted in multiple ways including
- Twhirl: A feature rich desktop client for better management and listening. Not only twitter but other microblogging tools as well
- Tweetlater: Schedule tweets, Send automated thank you notes, automatically follow new followers
8. Following the right people:
- One line of thought says that adding certain kind of people could be better. Ones that have loads of followers. I call them ‘Name collectors’. They have lots of followers, but they are just names and little relationships or authority over the thousands that follow them. Adding them could mean them potentially adding you back, and then if they like one of your tweets, they could potentially retweet to their followers, thus getting yu big exposure
- I prefer the other approach. I personally do not have followers in thousands. But I choose to follow the influencers-thought leaders, bloggers, microbloggers.. you get the idea. As a matter of fact, they also form the major portion of this blogzine’s readers. I study their previous posts, their URLs and their profile descriptions to decide whether the person is some kind of an authority in their line of subject, and do they have followers from my area of interest
- Either ways- has to be used in the right manner. Remember- while people with large followers can have more influence, it is not necessarily true that they will have the right influence over all the followers. There has to be some qualitative research over the kind of tweets and the conversations they’ve been having!
9. Search engine friendly: Carefully plug the right tweets, because search engines now track tweets as well. And if your tweet is retweeted many times and your company or you is mentioned, it can give a good boost to your SEO efforts
10. Some examples of companies that have used twitter: I realized this will take another post because I wanted to make a slightly exhaustive list, and one focussed on Asia. So will cover details in the next post. Meanwhile, based on international examples, I would like to emphasize that different players use the tool differently. A retail player like Whole Foods- has a Twitter profile and uses it to disseminate information including customer service info, promotions, etc.
And 2 good examples of corporate twitter usage I can see is @starbucks @comcastcares and @zappos.
I have them in my profile and more- if you need to add me, I am at @shalabhpandey
Once businesses learn how to use twitter as a viable communication tool they will have found a whole new audience that they may have not been reaching. Will keep this conversation open and look forward to your comments.
If you liked this post, you will love the next post on different usages of twitter, with an Asian perspective- here are other links in this series