Using Twitter in marketing

Everyday when I log into email, check my Twitter and LinkedIn accounts or just surf the news, I encounter dozens of articles on social media and what it all means.  Most tout the power – “it’s the greatest thing since sliced bread!” – and a few turn their noses up – “it’s a fad, a waste of time, not real marketing.”  As usual, the truth lies somewhere in between.

I seen the analogy of “new tools in the toolbox” and I’ve used more arrows in the quiver.  The meaning is the same – social media is adding another avenue for you to connect with prospects and customers and drive more traffic (and hence, business) your way. Just about every organization can benefit from the use of social media.  The key is to figure out how.  Let’s take Twitter:

  • my friend Jessica (@JessicaK or twitter.com/JessicaK) works for a B2B software firm and uses Twitter to help drive attendance at webinars and other events
  • f.y.e. (@fyeguy or twitter.com/fyeguy), a giant entertainment retailer, is just starting to use Twitter. They give away items almost daily and it’s helping them build a community and stay top-of-mind with customers.
  • Mezze (@MezzeGroup or twitter.com/MezzeGroup), a local restaurant and catering business here in the Berkshires, is doing some interesting promotions that I can’t help but think must be driving both local and tourist business their way.

So these examples are from completely different types of businesses but all are finding ways to leverage Twitter is some way, shape or form to help.  And, for none of these is Twitter or any other social media the end-all, be-all of their marketing efforts.  It’s a part and in most cases, a small part.  But it is effective.  The key is to pick something small to start with and try it out.

Let’s take Jessica’s webinars.  These have been going on for a couple of years – a monthly online user group that mainly attracts existing customers but is also good at getting some prospects in the door.  She drives attendance primarily through email blasts to her customer and prospect database.  In addition, it has been promoted as part of direct mail campaigns, through PR, through landing page links, at trade shows and word-of-mouth. Now, Jessica has added Twitter to the mix and the investment was $0, just Jessica’s time.

That being said, you NEED to be cognizant of the fact that social media is a time sink.  It will cost you and your organization valuable time.  So you really need to think out your plan – how am I going to use it in conjunction with my other marketing activities and how am I going to measure results?

On that last point,metrics for social media is still something I’m new to and learning. I’ve done some research and am still trying to digest and figure it out. The engineer in me always screams out for havine meaningful metrics whenever possible. So I’ll continue to investigate and welcome any thoughts on the topic!

It’s sunny and spring – everyone have a great day!

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1 comment so far

  1. Lisa on

    So what is twitter doing for you? I’ve been on it for a few months and thus far it seems more conducive to info marketers or retail conglomerates than small retail/service businesses or average joe biz. But perhaps I just haven’t figured a way to apply to mine yet. I found your blog via a linkedin announcement and topic was of interest to me.

    thanks,
    lisa


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