Twitter is not just a place for celebrities to air details of their glamourous lives or for talking about what you had for breakfast .
It has become an indispensable communications tool for businesses, non-profit organisations, celebrities and clubs and societies.
Twitter is having a real impact on how we receive information both on the news and in the media. It has become a key communications channel during major political events and natural disasters. And all kinds of organisations now rely on it for marketing, PR and customer service.
The fact is if you don’t Tweet then you are missing out on one of the fastest growing social network platforms for your business.
What is Twitter?
Twitter is a messaging service that allows you to send and receive messages no longer than 140 characters, or about the size of a news headline. That means that they are really easy to write and read.
Messages on Twitter are public, and you don’t have to give people permission to see what you have written making it easy to meet new people on Twitter.
Here are 7 Reasons why your business should use Twitter:
It’s Easy To Locate and Engage With Customers
Twitter is based on a system of give and take. You post a tweet and your followers respond. It’s simple and direct and enables you to build a relationship with your current or potential clients, members or fanbase. With a 140-character limit per tweet, Twitter is also not a substantial time investment.
People on Twitter will expect you to engage with them. No matter what your sector, the chances are, people are already tweeting about your products, your brand, your club, your company or at the very least, your industry.
It Helps Build Your Brand:
What you Tweet is a piece of your brand just like your logo or a jingle in a commercial. Your tweets help to define you and your organisation. For example, is your sports club family-oriented? Does your club or organisation target a specific niche or group of people? Every post you make will have an impact on your brand so post wisely.
You Can Offer an Irresistible Deal:
Everybody loves getting a great deal. When one pops up on their Twitter feed, it can build excitement and generate buzz. How this works is one follower retweets your message to his followers, then they re-tweet to another and they re-tweet to another…this is what “going viral” is all about and it can be an incredibly powerful maketing strategy.
Here are some other tactics that companies use:
- Promotions: Offer Twitter-specific discount codes. Most organisations report that lower priced items are much more likely to get uptake but do some testing and see what works for you, for example last year’s club merchandise or tickets for an upcoming event.
- Contests: People on Twitter LOVE a contest. A fun, creative game with good rewards can generate a great buzz. If you do run a contest, be sure to describe it on your website and include legal details and small print to cover you and keep it legal.
Contests and genuinely good deals DO get retweeted, so they are a great way of drawing not just extra revenue, but brand new followers too.
Another good tip is this: If you do offer a deal, post it a number of times. That way, you guarantee the maximum number of people see it and it won’t just slip under the radar of a lot of people
It’s Great For Networking:
You Can Engage With Journalists and PR People throughTwitter as it is home to thousands of journalists, media workers and PR people. If you look at practically every major online news site you will come across at least one story taken from Twitter. They trawl through Twitter trying to find newsworthy posts and trends so if you are looking for a little exposure for your club or organisation, Twitter can be a great place to connect with these people.
Here is how you can do it:
Post great messages. If your Twitter account is a resource in your sector, journalists will be more willing to trust you. They might even find you through retweets and comments that other people make if your posts are good enough.
Follow the media people who cover your sector. Quite often they will tweet when they are looking for sources. You can build a better relationship with them by following them. Keep in mind though, that they have a lot of people trying to do the same thing, so they will be wary and will be able to tell if you are just trying to use them for self interest.
You Can Solve Communication Issues:
Every organisation, no matter how big or popular they are has some issue with members or customers. It is impossible to please all of the people all of the time. A member with a negative experience may head to Twitter to release her fury and tell the world.
Savvy organisation have figured out that they need to find ways to control the message and do some damage limitation. By having an active Twitter account, you can directly handle these potential issues before they spiral out of control.
The cool thing about Twitter is that you can reply in public, showing everybody that you are a responsive, caring company. A potentially negative situation can then be turned on its head, made into a positive experience.
Twitter is a great way for tackling situations like this: it’s likely, when issues arise, that a number of people have the same issue, so answering publicly can help a lot of people all at once saving you lots of time and aggravation.
You Can Tell People Your Latest News in Real-Time:
Twitter is a fantastic way to push out the latest news about your club or organisation.
For example, if your club involved in an important match, tweets can be posted updating scores as they happen.
A word of warning though: Don’t make all of your posts just about your club. If you are a world-famous brand that a lot of people already love and are fans of, like Apple for example then you can probably get away with posting mostly about your organisation. But if you are just a small club and not well known it is best not just post about your own news all of the time – try to appeal to those who are not directly involved with your club by providing more generic information at times, for example, good training techniques or where cheap equipment can be purchased.
Taking this approach will help build your credibility with existing and potential new members.