How Twitter Can Help Online Marketing and Tips

June 25th, 2008

Online Marketing with TwitterTwitter has been around and popular in the U.S. for more than a year with millions of users. The iPhone is coming to Canada in a few weeks and I am sure Twitter will become more mainstream and adopted in Canada. Why? Because the iPhone can host the already popular Twitter application, it can be integrated with your Facebook and your blog, and it is very accessible to input your tweets anywhere, anytime.

More than a year ago, I went to a conference in San Jose and was introduced to Twitter. I was initially not sold on it, nor did I understand why someone would use it. I wasn’t convinced because I didn’t see the relationship and benefits with other social media spheres myself. Recently I integrated it with my Facebook , iPhone and Seed the Web blog and I discovered that it is a great way to get the word out about yourself, company or blog. It is a good medium for expressing yourself and networking with others with common interests. I now see how beneficial it is, if Twitter is fully integrated with other mediums, you can see better results in a whole (synergy).

How I have my Twitter set up:

Integrating twitter

So what is Twitter?

  • It’s a micro blog that allows you to send updates (aka “tweets”) to the Twitter website, similar to the Facebook status (with a limit of 140 character input). People want to tell the world what their likes and dislikes are and what they are doing “right now.”
  • It helps you find people with similar interests. You can follow them, and others can follow you.
  • It’s an instant-messaging-meets-social-media-networking tool.
  • Twitter is one of the most popular applications on the iPhone.

What Twitter can be used for:

  • Pull marketing tactic vs. push.
  • Quick answers to random questions – you can throw a question out and anyone can answer you.
  • Telling others about breaking news within the industry.
  • Promoting your company’s name, sharing your blog posts or news.
  • Saying weird stuff (with your company’s name mentioned for a subtle plug of course!).

Samples of real-life opportunities:

From my experience so far at Sitemasher, we’ve had potential customers contact us and tell us that they found out about Sitemasher via Twitter. Others have given us feedback that they found us on Facebook, saw the tweets about Sitemasher on our status and clicked through on our blog links to find out more about our website builder/content management platform (CMS). Sitemasher has also seen increases in its blog traffic, Twitter followers and friends requests in Facebook. In the end, it increased the communities that we’re involved with, which can also increase new customer leads as we’re tapping into a larger audience with the same likes.

10 key takeaways to integrate Twitter with other tactics to get better results.

  1. Show full transparency and authenticity. Open an account at Twitter.com with a real name – use your name and not an alias, so people can search and follow you. Also, when you use a real name and picture, people will trust you more.
  2. Lurk and learn before you leap. Watch how others interact, post links, and ask questions – learn from them.
  3. Interact and give value. You can be funny, educational, on-the-know and down-to-earth.

    Sample tweets:
    Sample tweets

  4. Have a library of tweets. Make sure you have a bunch of tweets before you really start to find followers, so others can view your tweets and know your personality and the value of your feeds – they’ll make that decision to follow you back or not.
  5. Try to follow those who you ultimately want to follow you back. Anytime you “follow” (which is like becoming a friend on other social networks like MySpace, Facebook, or Digg), it sends a notification to that user. And they may follow you.
  6. Track and search tweets for key words that you’re interested in. I will go to Google Custom Search (in Beta) or summize.com and search for tweets on topics that I’m interested to or related to my business and start to follow those people. The people I look for are the ones with the same likes/dislikes as mine and those who give great links to tips, new technology services and who also do updates on a continual basis. This is a good way to keep up on your reputation management to see who is twittering about your company, and if it is positive or negative. Also gives you a chance to react and fix situations that may be negative.

    Sample search on Summize.com:
    Twitter search

  7. Integrate with other tactics. I discovered that if I integrated Twitter with other social media realms, my reach increases and I save time. I have my Twitter feed automatically update my Facebook status (you need to download the application in Facebook to your profile). I posted my feed on my blog to show visitors what I’m doing or saying at the moment, and I downloaded the Twitter application on my phone, so I can tweet on-the-go.

    Sample Twitter feed on blog:
    twitter updates

  8. Subtly promote your company. Don’t do all business speak – not a hard sell – take your suit off! Start casual conversations with the people you like or have something in common with. Don’t sell them – make acquaintances only. Get familiar with inappropriate spam.
  9. Make a commitment. At first you may feel like you’re talking to no one, but you’ll gain followers in no time – don’t get disheartened – nothing good is easy!
  10. Advertise your Twitter feed and let people know you are Twitter friendly. They also may find you through Facebook, blog, search results or other advertising medium (business cards, e-mail signature). Insert it on your e-mail signature or even write it on the back of your business cards.

Sample email signature:

Twitter in email signature

Additional Twitter reading: Guidance, Tools and Resources at Website Magazine.

You can also visit my post “ Twitter Tips – Do’s and Don’ts“.

If you want to share similar experiences on this topic, I encourage you to leave a comment!

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One Response to “How Twitter Can Help Online Marketing and Tips”

  1. farbige kontaktlinsen on October 20, 2009 10:24 am

    Twitter is really a great invention, but I think blogging is even more important to create some traffic. But I can use some of the tips.

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