Posted by Sam Battin, Senior Search Strategist, SEO
How do you use Twitter to help your business?
Information is a currency. Valuable information gets traded more quickly and has a larger audience. Twitter is a platform that allows the exchange of individual units of information, 141 characters at a time. Can it be used to build a wealth of ideas?
Performics has been on Twitter for some time now – our first post was on March 12, 2009 and it announced our company’s new slogan:
Over Twitter's short existence (it started in March 2006), enough people have joined the network and posted to turn Twitter into a self-sustaining source of new content. According to Twitter’s own statistics, as of February 2010, it published 50 million user tweets per day, or 600 every second. That’s a lot of free content.
In the 3rd quarter of 2010, we're taking a second look at Twitter. We're writing this article partly to announce our Twitter strategy and partly to (we hope) spark some discussions about workable business strategies that involve Twitter.
Performics’ online goals are simple:
- Increase brand perception through thought leadership
- Grow our client base
- Encourage participation
- Share our expertise
- Keep our clients on top of news, insights and industry updates
Twitter allows brands to encourage participation. Brands and clients can direct message each other, re-tweet, and respond to questions. The methods of communication possible through Twitter are still developing, as is the terminology used to describe them, but they amount to a dialog that can lead to better brand perception, a larger client base, and greater levels of client retention.
So how is Twitter helping us accomplish this?
For one thing, following Performics is a quick way to get updated on company happenings. We tweet blog posts (like this one), and we tweet links to SEO, SEM, and social news that's interesting. If one of our employees is speaking somewhere we'll add a tweet telling our followers where and when.
More than this, though, we use Twitter to develop and grow our company’s character. We believe our company’s online identity is defined not only by the information we post, but also by the people we follow and the people that follow us. In the next paragraphs, we’ll talk about these ideas and how we use them to help achieve our goals.
People We Follow
We understand that people will visit our Twitter page for information about our company, but we also understand that our visitors won't stay on our page forever. At some point, our Twitter visitors are probably going to click some of those links on the right side of the page to see the people and businesses we follow. If we follow interesting people, this provides visitors with a good user experience and enhances our brand. We try to make this an interesting group.
As of August 2010, Performics is following the tweets of 1,511 people and businesses. Some of these people include fellow members of the digital advertising industry, as well as online luminaries like Eric Schmidt (Google CEO) and Search Engine Land's Danny Sullivan. We also follow certain Chicago technical writers because we're a Chicago company.
Business publications like Crain's get followed to develop and improve our relationships with the reporters who cover our industry. When they’re writing about SEM, SEO, social, display or other performance marketing topics, we’re on the lookout for tweets requesting insights. This way, we stay close and can help contribute worthwhile information when they need it. It’s also a two-way relationship; if business reporters follow us, maybe one of our tweets will spark an idea for a new story.
We're also following our employees, which gives us and them a unique channel of communication. If one of our employees writes something interesting or memorable, we can retweet it to our followers. This not only helps shape our online identity, but includes the added benefit of allowing our employees to obtain followers and expand their individual online identity. A select few celebrities are followed by Performics, too (please visit our page to find out which ones).
People Who Follow Us
There’s a specific audience out there who will find our Twitter page not through search engines, and not from our Web site, but by following links from the Twitter people who follow us. When these folks reach our Twitter page, what will they think?
We don't have control over the people who follow us. Our followers affect how our site is seen by search engines and everyone else. We'll try to attract followers who are in tune with what we do, and make it worth their while by providing useful posts.
So who's following us? About 1,567 accounts right now, but we're trying to get more. We use Twitter to channel information to our clients and prospects, and we encourage both to follow us. We try to keep them interested by posting interesting and useful content. We also hope to get the attention of our employees who use Twitter, and we want to spark the interest of our Publicis partners like Moxie Interactive and Razorfish.
What do you think? Tweet us!
We’d like to hear your thoughts on these ideas – preferably through a public Twitter conversation #Performics, anyone?