Many business owners are asking: “Does my company really need to be using twitter?” Before we answer that question, let’s examine exactly what twitter is.
Simply put, Twitter is a mini-blogging platform that you can use to send messages of 140 characters or less to family, friends, colleagues, or just the general Web community at large, basically it is a platform that allows people having conversations online, to express themselves to the world in 140 characters or less.
It looks like this:
You can also choose to follow other Twitter community members’ posts, either by navigating directly to the Twitter site, subscribing to that particular Twitter RSS feed, or getting Twitter posts sent to your mobile device (text messaging fees will apply for this option; check with your provider).
On twitter, you will find people talk about everything from environmental issues to what they ate for lunch. At first glance, it can seem overwhelming, but it can actually add tremendous value to your business and provide a hefty return on investment.
Let me explain.
From a business standpoint, you and your company can through twitter to get involved in these conversations online, like use twitter to keep your customers apprised of your new products or services, to simply post other well-organized information online with the ability for visitors to leave feedback or ask questions.
It is a great way to fire off a quick jolt of news if you don’t’ have a lot of time to write anything more substantial (you can see my twitter feed at bblweb)
There are many corporations nowadays are on the twitter and working toward to enhance their customer services, in the other words, they are using it to strengthen their CRM (customer relationship management), example:
• B2B CRM company Salesforce.com post customer success stories Successforce (2,726 followers)
• Similar to Dell Ideastorm, Starbucks uses Twitter to ask customers about ideas and to highlight promotions: MyStartbucksideal (7,985 followers)
• Event organisers are successfuly using Twitter to promote their events: W2e (17,994 followers)
• The Twitter Top 100 shows many news organizations such as CNN Breaking, The New York Times and The Telegraph within the Top 100 amongst the celebrities.
• With a tech audience a Twitter feed with contributions from different analysts or journalists shows – Forrester analyst Jowyang has over 52,834 followers.
So is it worth for you to be on the twitter and twittering for your business? As always, the answer is “it depends”. But the short answer is “probably not”.
What I mean is that even Twitter is a very hot social media marketing tool to use, but there’s not a one-size-fits-all approach. If you are selling Medicare services, you aren’t likely to reach your audience via Twitter.
But if you are an elected official and you want to rally your constituents behind a piece of legislation, Twitter may be the perfect tool for keeping your supporters informed, minute by minute.
On the other hand, if you have a popular blog, a publisher or a smaller business positioning yourself as innovative, I definitely recommend offering Twitter as a choice for your subscribers beyond email and RSS feeds. It is also useful for web startup companies and larger agencies to position their business.
Speaking of how to carry out your twittering efficiency, you need to come out with a solid strategy with goals, guidelines and tactics on the place before dive into the twitter sea. Ask yourself following these important questions:
• What is your ultimate goal?
• How are you going to achieve it?
• Who is going to run it? Use internal staff or outsourcing?
• What are the staff cost and how to control it since some will get distracted from their main job?
• How are you going to respond to negative feedback?
• Do you have a crisis plan in place?
It is important to find the right people to help you navigate twitter or other social media. If you are use outsourcing, in your search for social media experts, keep in mind that individuals and organizations that are already using twitter will have a great head start over those that are not.
Back to the original question: Does Your Company Really Need To Be Using Twitter?
My answer is f you want to give customers choice, reach brand advocates and journalists and so improve perception of the brand, Twitter is a good low-cost addition to your digital marketing communications.