Monday 30 January 2012

To Tweet Or Not To Tweet...That Is A Common Question!

As someone who dedicates a fair amount of time to face-to-face networking, I am often asked by  people I meet as to whether they should 'tweet' (i.e. post updates via twitter, the popular social networking website).

As a marketer I've kind of grown up with the old saying "there's no such thing as bad publicity" etched in to my brain so in that sense, if you're making some noise, then good for you!  I will however caveat that with some other points to bear in mind:

  • Who is going to follow you?  This is a key question as if you work out who you want your followers to be you can have a look at the accounts they currently follow and see if there's a theme - especially those they interact with regularly!
  • What have you got to say that's interesting?  Why should people follow you initially and what's going to sit up and make them take an interest going forward?  How can you get them to engage with your account.
  • How personal are you going to make it?  Very often companies set-up accounts which post drab updates without much soul and simply blatant sales pitches.  How can you appeal to your target audience?
  • How much time have you got to dedicate to this?  I've seen people spend a lot of time on twitter and then get fed-up and say it's not working for them.  For me, twitter works well at the beginning/end of the day when I want to catch-up on news.  I use twitter for Digity as a key resource and learning tool so my accounts are fairly lean for information but that's an area of opportunity for us as we grow.  At the moment I have my marketing priorities and they continue to show good returns for my company so my advice would be to focus your key time on activities which work and utilise your 'down time' for those you want to try and bring in to the equation.
  • How are you going to know if it's starting to make an impact for your business?  There are services such as Hootsuite which enable you to post updates and track various key stats to see how your exposure and audience is growing (or not?).  
  • Who are you going to follow, interact with and support on there and what will that say about you?  The 'retweet' and 'mention' capabilities are powerful as they give you the opportunity to extend the olive branch to new contacts and show them your support.  I've seen good relationships build from such actions.
So my advice is to spend time on twitter looking at similar companies to yourself and working out what they post which seems to enhance their business.  Then look for people who represent your target audience and see if you can get a feel for the type of 'tweets' they are likely to acknowledge.  Then you can get stuck in, try some thing, grow your followers and build up your account and it's value to your business!

Good luck and if you're on twitter, follow @digityuk 

Chris Lunn, Managing Director
Digity, Marketing Consultancy

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