Social media is here to stay and companies the world over continue to take advantage of the wide audience to market their brands. Twitter is essentially a massive public text messaging system, and while it might not be apparent up front, it can be a pretty powerful tool for a growing business.
Twitter & Visibility
No matter how big or small your company, visibility is key to building brand recognition. Whether you’re running a multi-million dollar tech startup or a small online boutique based out of your dining room, you’ll never succeed if nobody knows you exist.
The beauty of Twitter is that it allows you to meet your customers in their comfort zones. Smart use of hashtags will help them find you and the ability to engage with them in real time can help solidify those contacts. If you succeed in making a positive connection, they’ll share with their circle and increase your company’s visibility even further.
Of course, advertising is a time-honored method of getting your business in front of customers, and Twitter is happy to take your money in exchange for increased visibility. Twitter ads are actually fairly aesthetically pleasing, blending into the background for the most part while still luring potential customers to your business. Twitter offers a few different advertising avenues, including promotion of individual tweets or promoting your company as a whole.
To recap, you can do it organically or you can pay for it, but either way Twitter offers increased visibility for your business. Is it worth the time and expense? You’ll have to decide whether or not you want to put forth the effort, but the audience is certainly there.
Twitter & Communication
Twitter provides a means of communicating with your customers in real time. While some social media sites are an excellent means of sharing information about your products, services or industry news, Twitter is at the top of the list when it comes to holding a conversation with your audience.
Twitter can also help you get a read on what your customer base wants without all the guesswork. More? Better? Faster? The answers you seek are but a tweet away.
Feedback is a Good Thing…
Direct communication also gives you access to your biggest fans. They have positive feedback, and they’ll likely share it with (or sometimes without) a little prompting. Personal recommendations are powerful forces, so you’ll want to then turn around and share those testimonials with the rest of the world!
…Even When It Isn’t
On the other hand, you can’t please all of your customers all of the time, and there’s no way around getting the occasional complaint. While it can be unnerving to have those complaints broadcast to an entire worldwide community, the fact is that you’re better off responding to those complaints rather than letting them float around without being addressed. If you’re not on Twitter, you can’t respond.
Customer service is about helping the current customer, but it’s also about showing potential customers what your company is capable of. Your customers are on Twitter, and if you’re there to meet their needs quickly and professionally the rest of the Twittersphere will see it.
Twitter & Espionage
Naturally, if you’re considering establishing a presence on Twitter, your competition probably is too. Actually, there’s a good chance they’ve already beaten you to it. What are you going to do about that?
Apart from visibility and communication, Twitter can directly benefit you by giving you a glimpse (again, in real time) inside the minds of your competition. Keep tabs on their events, their latest achievements, and breaking industry news. See how they interact with customers and learn from their successes and mistakes. Tracking your competitors’ performance can help you tailor your business to better serve both your loyal and potential customers.
Is a Twitter presence right for your business? Twitter is all about trends, news, and personal engagement. Those can be valuable tools if you use them right.