Twitter Strategy for Business Part 3

This is Part 3 of a 3 part series on Twitter Strategy for Business.  Part 1 is here Part 2 is here

Previously I posted about twitter and business. In that article I discussed a businesses entrance to twitter. I then posted about the Trivium of Twitter Accounts.  Here I aim to show how to apply the trivium.

How often to post

Frequency of posting is an often asked question from businesses regarding twitter. Generally speaking people often come out of the gate stronger/faster than they can keep up with. So start slow, and find a groove. See if you can keep the momentum going before you increase your frequency. Here are some general guidelines specific to the trivium of twitter accounts:

  • Personal:
    • A couple times  a day to once a week
    • Whatever you would update on facebook could go here
    • This is for your friends and family and the world at large
  • Person Behind the Brand:
    • Two times a day to once a week. As often as needed for the brand
    • This depends on the goals of your social media campaign
  • Brand:
    • Much less frequently
    • Event sponsorships, coupons or links to news articles about your brand

What are your Goals for Twitter?

Courtesy booksnake @ flickr

Courtesy booksnake @ flickr

Consider your audience. Consider your ultimate goal: you are either trying to sell a product, a service or do the non-profit/government thing of offering a service for free/cheap.  Are you on twitter for customer support? What about increasing sales? Generating buzz about new products/services/degrees/etc. ? Every Tweet should be moving in a direction to support your twitter goals, which should support your social media goals.

You need to think strategically about your entire marketing, especially social media.

If your goal is to tell people how cool your city is and convince people to move their businesses to your city; your goal on twitter could be to highlight all the cool things and real estate and developments going on in your town. You could link to tweets about that. Similarly this account retweets good tweets/information from twitterers in the Houston area.

Perhaps you represent an educational institution.  Your goal is to increase applications and ultimately the number of students enrolled. Do prospective students know what makes your school stand out? Do they know you offer a program they care about? Are you educating them already: FASFA deadlines,  or how an MBA will help them, jobs, careers, other resources? Could you use twitter to position your institution as an authority in their area of interest?

What about development? Do you need to increase donor numbers and develop better forms of communication with your donors? What if your donor had a personal connection to your organization? They already care about what you do, could you make them passionate? Could they spread word about you because your equipped them with the right information? Perhaps they could become brand evangelists for you and spread your network to include their network.

There are many different goals, twitter is just a channel, a media to spread your story/message. So make your goals appropriate to that story/message. Decide if twitter is the channel for you. It will work for most brands, but will it return? Will it be beneficial?

Why should I be on Twitter? What’s the ROI?

courtesy cayusa @ flickr

courtesy cayusa @ flickr

The long and short of it. You need to be on twitter, just like you need a web presence. Eventually we will work our way into how it works best for your organization and what the ultimate ROI is. But the basics are this: There are Millions of potential clients/consumers on Twitter. Are they seeing your brand there? Do they hear you speaking into their lives?

There are users complaining about your brand, are you answering them? Are you in the arena where they are talking about you?

As a minimum, have a presence like Google did. They had their account for a while and only recently started tweeting. Who knows, perhaps Google will purchase Twitter.

Your ROI for twitter can be measured, but you need to setup realistic, measurable goals.

Comments are open. What are your questions? What did I miss? What do you want to know? This strategy is a work in progress and needs help. I need your help to know what it’s missing.

  • Pingback: Twitter Strategy for Business Part 2

  • Pingback: Twitter Strategy for Business Part 1

  • Heidi R.

    Excellent article, Paul ~ well done! :)

    My question is how do you conveniently manage more than one account without having to log in and out constantly? Per part 2, I’ve now set up a few other Twitter accounts, but so far, managing two is enough work.

    Thanks!
    Heidi

    • Maryam B.

      I find that TweetDeck is really good for managing more than one account. You can make one TweetDeck account and then add lots of other sub accounts it’s really convenient.

  • Karen Meade

    Just as a general comment, I tend to disagree with the masses on a twitter account not making sense for a business. I set-up a personal account several weeks ago, updated it twice, and then let it sit stale. I am not a big fan of updating my status on Facebook though either. I just don’t feel I ever have anything profound enough to want to share with friends, family and co-workers.

    For a business, however, I think it can make really great sense – especially as a PR tool. It’s an opportunity for businesses to connect with individuals already thinking about their brand (by doing a twitter search and responding to individuals) and what’s even better is that individuals (or most individuals) do not perceive this as an invasion of privacy. It’s actually welcomed!

    We have had situations where a semi-negative comment that is appropriately responded to turns around into praise for the brand we represent.

  • JeremyB

    Heidi – Some clients, like Digsby (.com) will allow you to manage multiple simultaneous Twitter accounts.

  • http://www.teamddm.com mark blodger

    Cool. I got info from you and some info from the respondents too. Sweet blog work. I liked the examples for the various markets. They form the word pictures we need to share this great tool with our staff. They boil it down to the everyday real applications that people wonder about. I like facebook for some things but twitter is a lot more nimble. The point that needs to be real clear is that none of this works without the desire to share, recommend, refer, complain, debate and inquire. When I read a great book or see a great film or come across a great online tutorial I could keep it to myself. I could tell a couple close work associates or a friend. But why not shout about it on twitter, on a business blog, on our website (right column please) or on our facebook page. Spread the word, share the info, make everyone in your network smarter, more entertained, enlightened. Its the nice thing to do. Save someone some steps or time hunting down information. Great stuff.

  • Bob Young

    Excuse the excitement of a “newbie,” but I recently conducted a twitter “experiment” and have just taken a moment to assess the results. Over a period of hours I placed several posts that were little more than concentric circles around the terms “social networking” and “social media marketing.” I just looked at the four followers I attracted, the first within 90 second and the fourth sixth hours later, and realized that they’re all engaged in social media marketing, some very intensely, it turns out. Oddly, three of the four are located in Europe.

    In this sense, it almost seems to me to behave like SEO. You can go fishing with twitter, using a certain type of bait, and attract, if not hook, certain types of fish.

    Does this make sense?

  • http://paulkortman.com/ Paul Kortman

    Heidi, there are a couple of different clients which will let you manage multiple accounts. As Jeremy Recommends Digsby sounds promising, but it’s only for Windows. I have seen a lot of people use twhirl successfully to manage multiple accounts. Personally I can’t stand the interface, but I’ve only spent an hour or two with it.

    I go this route: tweetdeck for my personal account and a browser for each other account I want to be working in (Safari, Firefox, Opera, etc) You can install multiple browsers and use tools, such as twitter toolbars for firefox, or the website in each browser to do your posting. Each browser has a different look and feel so you know which account you are in. (Just make sure you use account A in firefox every day and don’t switch it.) Mistakes have been made, people have posted to the wrong accounts etc. People are kinda forgiving about that.

    Karen, would you like to write the next post on that topic?

    Jeremy, thanks! when oh when will they port it to the two other OS’? I have a feeling I might really like that app, but I’m not willing to destroy my computer by installing the OS it currently requires.

    Mark, are all people content generators? What about Critics/reviewers? You should read the book Groundswell or look at http://m.flickr.com/#/photos/25131367@N05/2955749197/sizes/o/ and http://www.forrester.com/Groundswell/profile_tool.html Is it possible for people to be Spectators and that’s all they are ever going to be?

    Bob, welcome to the newbie club, as long as you stay two steps ahead of your clients then you can educate them right! I’m still new, if you ask others out there.

    We’ve seen this a lot, and it’s part of the power of twitter search, I’m working on the next post to discuss that… stayed tuned!

    But in general, talk about what you want people to discuss with you and they will find you and discuss it with you. Also search for people talking about what you want to talk about and follow them, discuss and interact with them. It’s a fun sandbox to play in… Just make sure you keep all the sand in the box!

    SEO and twitter can and are connected, but do not confuse them. You can attract twitter followers and conversations but it’s a different ballgame too be an SEO wiz. Keywords on a page are a small percentage of the total SEO package.

  • Brian Bekins

    Hey Paul,

    Thanks for taking the time to help educate the masses. Although I understand that Twitter is a new and dynamic way to communicate with clients/customers I struggle with your overall concept that all businesses should be on Twitter. Twitter is one of many types of communication tools that clients can use to market themselves. But like any tool it has to reach their target audience. I can’t imagine saying “all businesses should be using direct mail”. So while Twitter may be an excellent fit for a University I can’t see it as an effective too for say Shadybrook Retirement Village. This is an extreme example but I would say the same thing for Financial clients, Healthcare clients, Lawfirms, B to Bs, etc. I think we need to sell vehicles or overall strategies that will be effective for clients…not just Twitter strategies.

    I understand that this is about Twitter so maybe the lack of other more “traditional” methods in your write up may not be intentional. If I was to take a quick poll of my 100 Facebook friends I think it would be safe to say that maybe 5% use Twitter on a regular basis…while 100% get mail daily and probably 65-70% still get some form of newspaper and listen to public radio. I’m not trying to steer us away from new media by any means…just making a point that some of the buzz that traditional media is dead may be a little premature. And what about people ages 60+? Are they tweeting?

    I also think we need to be very upfront with clients on what Twitter can become. In may situations Twitter can be 25% marketing and 75% customer service. Is the client prepared for this? Are we as providers prepared for this? I know as a consumer I don’t want to be sold to when I have a product complaint. With this form of marketing you are giving your customers a voice…are you prepared to listen? Are you willing to except the negative message this may create?

    I think clients are looking for new ways to reach consumers and Twitter may be a good fit. I also think we owe it to them and ourselves to make sure it is the right fit.

  • http://paulkortman.com/ Paul Kortman

    Brian,

    Great points.

    I was strong in my statement that everyone needs to be on twitter. And this post is not discussing a full social media strategy which is only part of an overall marketing strategy. This is one leg one part of the full strategy, but my aim here was to take a business and show them how they could use twitter to achieve their goals.

    Twitter is not a one size fits all marketing device. But I disagree with some of your examples. I’ll concede the retirement village, but the law firm needs to be on twitter. If I post a HR law question to my followers on twitter and a rep of a law firm picked up my conversation (Hijacked? I need a better term for this!) replied and started interacting with me I might become an eventual client. There is no guarantee here. But if that law firm wants to be seen as an authority in HR law they need to be dialogging with people in the marketplace of ideas. Twitter is one tool to do that.

    Or healthcare clients. If I am complaining about a Doctor, or a Hospital and that doctors office responds It could change my perspective of that healthcare organization. Granted this blurs the lines between marketing and customer satisfaction/service but if we market well to our existing clients will they not spread our brand via word of mouth?

    Twitter will not make or break your company no matter the size. You need to offer great products and services. But twitter is a tool to aid in marketing and service.

    “Are you prepared to listen” Great question. I believe organizations who are not prepared to listen will struggle. Gen X and Gen Y are bringing new expectations of interactions to the table and they expect their voices to be heard. A company who doesn’t care about them will loose their business over time.

    As to the negative noise from customers/clients: see Karen’s comment above: http://paulkortman.com/2009/03/03/twitter-strategy-for-business-part-3/#comment-106 where she says: “We have had situations where a semi-negative comment that is appropriately responded to turns around into praise for the brand we represent.” In the next post I hope to give examples of this.

  • Karen Meade

    In response to your comment Brian about a retirement home not making sense for Twitter, the individuals making the decisions on a retirement home are less often those planning to live in the home and more often their kids. A retirement home could use Twitter as way of conveying to the public that they are up with the times, the technology, and are forward-thinking. As a consumer, I would perceive a retirement home that is on twitter or other social media outlets as state-of-the-art. Think about somebody going onto Twitter and complaining about the care their parent was receiving at Shadybrook Retirement Village or the search they were beginning to find a retirement home for their parent. It would be great if Shadybrook could immediately respond to cast a more positive light or suggest their facility.

    And with financial clients, it’s not about who their current client make-up is, but about building relationships with new clients, a younger generation. I don’t know anything about what is the best financial move for me, but if there was a company that recognized this and sought a better means to connect with individuals in my place, I would be more likely to work with them. A financial company could use Twitter as an opportunity to reach beyond their typical market and not really “dumb” down their current marketing speak, but put it on a level that the general audience would understand.

  • Bob Taylor

    Great articles Paul, you should start a blog ;). But seriously, the big take away from this discussion is that businesses and orgs that want to implement a social networking strategy within their existing marketing initiatives, need to understand the dynamics of the tools AND be prepared to listen. When I tweeted about Ford, GM, and Chrysler, the folks at Chrysler-within a day-tweeted back with a URL to their blog and mini-defended their position. That was very impressive, but it also took resources on the inside of Chrysler.

    Twitter is but one tool to push and pull with your exisitng Clients as well as your prospective customers. Sadly, most organizations are way too insulated from those constituents, and are content too hide behind voice mail or email based (impersonal) strategies to effectively respond. But-whether they are ready or not, they will be in the fray as more people adopt the 2.0 world.

    You are spot on right when you say “Gen X and Gen Y are bringing new expectations of interactions to the table”. It will not cease, and it will be “back to the basics” for many firms. For some, it may be too late-they probably still had rotary dial phones anyhoo.

  • Patrick Kuras

    Hi Paul,

    Nice article. Thanks for your work in putting this all together. I would suggest that you (and your readers) take a look at Angela Maiers’ “Twitter Engagement Formula” at http://www.angelamaiers.com/2008/09/my-twitter-enga.html

    Angela argues, correctly, I think, that a business user should include a small amount of (appropriate) personally-oriented traffic in their Tweetstream. The value of this is to reinforce the human nature of conversations, whether they take place on Twitter or any place else.

    As evidence of the truth, appropriateness and value of this approach, consider that in almost any business meeting, a few minutes at the beginning or end are devoted to personal smalltalk. This keeps the human beings involved in the business discussion connected as humans.

    And this connection has real business value. Few salespeople would argue with the old adage that people buy from people they like. The personal stuff is the glue that keeps the business relationship together.

    There’s nothing new in the kinds of relationships that are carried on using FaceBook, Twitter or any other social networking medium. It’s just the medium that’s new.

    So, to amplify your points, I would say that businesses need to figure out what kinds of conversations they want to (should) have, or are already having, with their customers, and then use the tools at hand to facilitate those conversations.

  • http://paulkortman.com/ Paul Kortman

    Awesome Patrick, I totally agree!

    Twitter is just a medium. But if you are not in that medium there will be lost opportunity.

  • Jenny

    Ok Paul, coming from someone that had no idea what Twitter was up until yesterday, I really am so much more curious about this kind of networking.

    I agree with a lot of what others have posted so far, especially Karen talking about it on a personal level. But what really hits home to me is this is a medium and if we miss the opportunity to engage with others (on our clients behalf) from a global level we are missing the point of marketing information entirely.

    I have always thought that “word of mouth” was a very important component in marketing or product sales etc. and I still do, although using Twitter as a tool you can take that philosophy and target people in huge masses throughout the world.

    I am still trying to fulling digest this form of social networking but as a whole
    I think we should always be thinking forward in techology, communications, and creative solutions and if this is the right solution for a certain client than we need to take advantage of it. Over and out.

    thanks again Paul!

  • Amy R.

    Thank you for creating these articles. I am understanding more about social media everyday. To start, I will say that I have issues with tweeting on a personal level-I am not the biggest fan for numerous reasons. I choose not to use it. Aside from the fact that I don’t think everyone needs to know what I’m doing/thinking/eating for breakfast (nor would I think anyone would care,) maybe it’s for fear of a snowball effect that it becomes this monster that I can’t control? It’s a possibility.
    However from a business standpoint I see the relevance and I agree that it is a great tool to use to get your word out there, get opinions, and to get people involved. There is a lot to comment about, but one of my concerns for these new types of social media is that you are allowing any and everyone to have a “stage” to talk- good or bad as mentioned in a previous comment. It seems like more of a daunting task for a company to keep up and monitor to correct these comments than it benefits. How do you avoid it turning into a “monster”?
    Lastly, for people like my self who want to stay private, not tweet etc, how do you as a business know that you are extending to the depths of your target market? How would you get your word out to an unknown consumer? I’m with Brian on that the “buzz” of traditional marketing being dead is premature because we need it for these types of situations. A diverse portfolio of marketing strategies seems to be the way to go.

  • LisaB

    Paul, as a factfinder by nature, I stand in awe of your ability to compile so much information into one place – complete with images and links! As a fairly new user to FB and trying to navigate that, I’m having a hard time getting my head around the whole Twitter thing. Like Amy, I have no desire to become a \tweeple\ and will most likely not use it on a personal level. However, thanks to your info I can see how it could be very useful for businesses and organizations – especially non-profits that don’t have huge budgets for traditional marketing. I say kudos to ddm marketing for being forward thinking enough to encourage us all to get involved. I think online social networking is here to stay and has fast become another service/tool we can offer our clients.

  • Jana Korest

    For as contemplative and social as I am, I’m also of few words (which will work well for Twitter) … this is great information! Very helpful to me in my efforts to serve clients with smart strategies – thank you Paul! Now I need you to actually sit down with me, in a room, face to face, to discuss the particulars of how best to educate and serve specific clients… look forward to learning more. Thanks again – keep it coming.

  • http://paulkortman.com Paul Kortman

    Jenny, Thanks for the thoughts, yeah word-of-mouth is very important… check out the story of Motrin Moms where word-of-mouth destroyed the ad campaign of a pharmaceutical. http://pistachioconsulting.com/motrins-twitter-moment/ and http://www.web-strategist.com/blog/2008/11/17/motrin-mothers-groundswell-by-the-numbers/

    Amy, I understand the fear of providing a stage for anyone and everyone to talk. But the deal is the best company with the best product/service knows their client the best. They know how to listen to their client and know what they think and feel. Kraft for example doesn’t make great tasting food and then try to sell it to the single college guy. They appeal to the kids and the Moms. They know their audience and what they care about. They should be listening. Twitter is only one of many forums which they should be listening.

    There is no need to “correct” what someone has said, just put out correct information and those who are wrong will be proved wrong by the crowd, I have seen it happen time and time again. (Even on Twitter with our clients!)

    You suggest a diverse portfolio of Marketing strategies… if you want to know how much I agree with this please stay tuned… I have plans for a post which basically says this twitter thing is one spoke in the wheel of your marketing strategy. The series of 3 posts on Twitter Strategy is focusing on that spoke and how people can use it. I focused on this spoke because many people do not know how to use it strategically (yet).

    Lisa, thanks for your kind words, lets fact finders stick together eh!

    Jana, pick the time and place, I’ll be there.

  • Jewel Hainer

    Thanks for this good information to get my feel wet in a newer medium. I think it is amazing that we can be in touch with almost anyone, anywhere instantly. It’s wonderful, overwhelming and sometimes kind of frustrating providing too much information to manage.

    I understand the basic marketing and customer service ideas you cover here. Can you give more detail about how companies search to find discussions of their products? Are there privacy laws dictating what online content can be mined in this way? You cover how firms can do online marketing for themselves. You don’t touch on how a marketing firm can make money selling the use of these tools to their clients. Can you talk more about how we can use this as a source of profit? What specifically are we selling a client? How do we keep from earning a small amount of money teaching a client to use these tools then taking the work themselves cutting us out of a previous revenue stream? I realize online tools should be part of a larger, comprehensive marketing plan but would like to understand specifically how it fits into that plan and how long we manage the work with a client.

    Since the advent of internet access things have shifted and changed very quickly. The past few years have been exceptional. As the general public embraces twitter, facebook, rss feeds and the like cutting-edge users will already be on to the next cool new thing. How do we stay ahead of the curve without chasing full speed after the wrong next trend?

  • Jordan Buning

    Random thoughts and contributions from reading these entries…

    I’m wondering what your reference was for introducing the ‘new office pig’? It’s oddly specific amongst your reference. I’m looking forward to your continued use of that one.

    On a more professional level, I would add that as a business you need to understand this is a committed effort. I’ve watched clients and other businesses for a number of months participate with varying success. The common denominator is the effort they put into it and what tangible value they offered. If you think it’s a ‘build it and they will come’ environment – you will be disappointed. Ask yourself whether your brand message is informing or offering opportunity. If you want to use it as an pure awareness tool without value, I think you will always be wishing for me.

    An underlying purpose in developing any social media presence is to create a transparency with the market. This is an environment that is meant to facilitate regular and timely interactions. Be prepared to step into this world committed to dealing with a lot of views of your organization. In fact, plan for that that in advance.

    Finally, there has been some comments back and forth about the applicability of Twitter in the business world. To be clear there will never be an immutable rule that requires all business to have a presence. That said, do a little test to see the true prevalence of web 2.0 applications. It is nearly everywhere. In fact, a number of industries where you think it would least be used are the ones tackling it right now – including financial services,grocery stores, non-profits. The real question is more how each industry sees the opportunity to use Twitter and other comparable tools. We’re dealing with a product that can be whatever you want it to be. The question is whether you’ve sat down to understand how you can harness it as a tool you can use to address a part of your audience.

    For the record, I don’t think Twitter is the end-all/be-all of marketing tools. I think its the new tool of the era – just like so many other items of the past. Telemarketing seemed like an ingenious idea at one point too. It’s a cycle that culture dictates. Communication changes and those with the appropriate roles in their respective industries have a responsibility to change with culture. Twitter is a tool that’s time has come while others become less acceptable/useful. Look less at Twitter or anything as a forever union and more like speed dating.

  • Kelly Richards

    Wow, information overload after a vacation.. but let me see if I can give you anything useful. I appreciate your breaking the tweeple into three categories, I really do think some users use one account in a really confusing manner, and to be honest a time-sucker for people like me who prefer to get relevant information (tech tips, interesting news, etc) and not what someone is eating, watching on tv, etc. I do think Twitter is/will continue to be an important marketing tool, but also think it has the possibility of just becoming too much too look at on a daily basis. Quite possibly there are features in place for weeding through tweets that I’m not aware of yet. For those who need to balance a family life, friends, commitments to church/organizations and remaining billable at work (LOL) – finding time to sift through all of this can be daunting. I’m sure the unfollow feature will get more popular the bigger this all becomes.

    I do agree with others, it is not for every business – it may be because the nature of product or service provided or the intended audience is just not twitter-friendly. It needs to make sense before adding it to market strategy.

    Great article Paul. I’m also looking forward to hearing more about this and learning my way around all these tools.

    By the way, I am drinking coffee at my desk, I just feel the need to give my status at all times.
    ;)

  • Laura Palma

    Great thinking Paul!
    Love the dialogue that is created from your posts. It helps as a FAQ in my head, no need to ask, it is responded to in the next comment/posting from someone.

    I do wonder however. This media is brand exposure – whether personal or business. How can I create the visual essence of my brand on these pages? I see some choices under Design in the settings but then you are like the masses. And this communication is suppose to be so specific as to what I am doing or about or my business. I explored prettytweet.com and again, more of the masses kind of choices. So I created my own background but then kept running into blocks on getting it uploaded.

    Do you recommend this kind of thing for a visual presence as well? How often do you change/refreshen it up?

    Thanks for all your input and insights. Keep it comin!

  • Remington

    What a great conversation we have going here. I appreciate the different angles presented — I’m learning a lot about the marketing world, both on and offline. While I’ve been on FB since college, I’m far less active now and I am yet to join twitter. I keep saying “I’ll join when I get my iPod Touch…”, which hasn’t happened yet. In any case, I appreciate the push to learn what all the hype is about.

    There is one thing I would like to add. As a guy who thrives on real life personal interaction (contrasted with “virtual” interaction), I will echo Mike’s comment in our meeting today: There is nothing more impacting than a face-to-face meeting with a client. Now, there are certainly benefits to digital communication, such as its speed and convenience, but they come with a cost. It is important to remember that FB and Twitter are one way to start a relationship–and even maintain it–but you can only reach a certain depth in the virtual world. I recommend using virtual mediums as a means of getting face to face with your clients whenever possible. For clients in a different state, maybe a phone call or web conference is the best you can do, but that’s still more personal than 140 characters of text, no matter how frequently you tweet.

  • kathleenddm

    Paul – thanks for all the posts, lessons and conversations on twitter. Being so new to all of this social networking, I too feel like I needed the crash course on twitter especially. And you did that very nicely here. These were interesting and enlightening to read. I don’t think I am a person that is shy of technology, but starting on Facebook and now twitter have me spinning with thoughts about how this best could be applied to our clients. ddm is very good in doing due diligence on behalf of our clients. This is no different. We would look at what social marketing tools are appropriate, what the approach would be, what limitations it should have, who is the audience, etc. All the things we do now to approach a client with strategic recommendations for any type of work, would be applied here.
    One of my thoughts / concerns / questions is wondering what kind of company policy recommendations should people think about for their own employees? Remember when (probably before you were born!) the internet was brought into our work life? I worked for a large corporation at the time and they quickly drew up policies against being on the internet and email for anything other than for “work”. Is there that same hesitation for employers to allow time spent on Facebook, myspace, LinkedIn and twitter during their work day?
    I am looking forward to learning, listening, tweeting.
    Thanks again Paul! Keep the info coming.

  • Megan LaSorsa

    Admittedly, I was behind in the world of social media and the truth is, I liked being behind in it. I liked being the friend who wasn’t worried about if they should be “friends” with someone, or if they posted a funny tweet for the day. But, I was being pretty naive not learning more, quickly, especially as a part of the marketing community. No worries though, I’m catching up, jumping in, and learning more — happy to be doing so.

    And, thinking back and reading this series, was like a lightbulb moment. It is going to sound stupid, but, it’s not so small as to think it’s about whether a person has something profound to tweet about from their day. It can be about their brand – a place for sharing news, hearing concerns, and finding more information from others in the field. Yea, yea, I’m just recapping some of your thoughts, but, it’s all sinking in at the moment.

    So, I appreciate your time to layout this strategy. I found it straightforward and an easy read, thanks to the examples.

    Also, saw your suggestion to use Tweetdeck for managing multiple accounts. Is this an application that makes this easier, or provides multiple accounts in one places, cross-platform too? Sounds too easy…guess that’s the point. :)

  • maria

    Nice job explaining the basics, the different types to consider, etc. I also think you gave some nice examples for B2C situations. I agree that twitter and things like it are here to stay and that getting clients acclimated and using them appropriately (if not already) is valuable. I’d like to see more examples on B2B situations, and I’m looking forward to more examples on ROI to come that will help connect the dots for clients in their unique situations.

    Is it possible that for many right now (especially B2B), its:

    1) primary ROI is improving google ranking, and therefore generating more productive leads online.

    2) something that simply indicates to the online community that they are with the times and not falling behind.

    I think that in addition to providing strategy and resources to help clients do “social media”, value can be provided by helping them determine when one of the SM tools is an appropriate spoke in the wheel, and how those tools should function in an integrated fashion with other relevant marketing communications or public relations tactics.

    I’m reminded of my days as a law librarian when the internet was exploding, and all the talk was about the paperless office, no need for books, etc. Librarians added tremendous value at the time by helping their constituents understand that various tools available to them, when one tool was more suited to a situation than another, and how to use the respective tool effectively. Similar situation today.

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  • http://paulkortman.com/ Paul Kortman

    Jewel,
    search.twitter.com try it out, search for terms people would be using, not spatran bran, but maybe orange juice.

    There are privacy agreements, and twitter says if your stuff is not marked private (DM or protected updates) then it is public and anyone can mine it.

    In general people don’t have the time or desire to do these things themselves. They have full time work in their field. We show them how to do it and if they want assistance then we assist. It’s about being there to serve the client and help the client tell their story.

    More on a comprehensive online strategy later.

    Next trend: There is a certain point where the trend gains such a large adoption that it is mainstream. Seeing twitter and facebook utilities on news media outlets is when I knew these tools were mainstream. (in a similar fashion to how the web became mainstream in the late 90’s)

    Jordan,
    There is a user on twitter who tweets about a new office pig, I found out after using that analogy that she has protected tweets (private) so I cannot link to them. Bummer tho, they are quite funny.

    I really like how you put it about Twitter: “a product that can be whatever you want it to be”

    I’m going to steal and use the analogy to telemarketing (already have!) That’s good stuff!

    Laura,

    Good questions. Twitter as a micro-blogging tool is however not there for the visual presence. There are a few elements (profile picture, and background/colors) which can be visually appealing, but the focus is on the content. The users choose how to consume it and chances are they might see your background once or twice at most. Your profile picture is how they recognize you and know you (as well as your username!)

    I recommend changing imagery on twitter a few times a year, but no more than 4. If you do it too often you will loose people and they won’t connect your new image with your old image and they won’t track with your story.

    Remington,

    Twitter, nor any social media tool, will not replace personal communication in person or on the phone. But it can assist. I do not recommend making sales calls/follow ups via twitter. It’s more of a general public communication tool. If you are communicating about a proposal on twitter you are using it wrong.

    Kathleen,
    I am not the best policy making person, but in general all companies should have a policy about internet usage. These tools should fall under that polcy. When it comes to the marketing team for an organization they need to embrace these as work tools not as personal (“I’m eating a donut waiting for my smoke break”) tools. This means their activity should be trackable and billable (if that’s their business model). And therefor since it is for work purposes they should be allowed to use these tools with the current policy (for work only)

    Megan,
    Tweetdeck is an awesome application, but it does not yet do multiple accounts. (It’s still in a form of Beta) It allows you to consume twitter in a way that prevents noise and cuts right through to the signal. More on that app later.

    Maria,
    Agreed with all that… the tools are a bit new to get real good ROI numbers, and its different for every client. If your client needs to be positioned as an authority in their field (Healthcare) or do they need to sell widgets (manufacturing) or are they selling services (B2B) they all have different ROI’s for twitter specifically and for all SM tools in general. But I think you have a good handle on the low hanging fruit of the ROI. Keep the good, tough questions coming! Maybe someday I’ll answer them :-)

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