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Twitter for business – what’s the point?

“What’s the point of using Twitter for my business? What value will I get and what’s the ROI?” Find yourself asking these, if not similar questions? Here are a few answers from us:

Every day millions of tweeple – that’s people who tweet to non tweeters –  use Twitter to create, discover and share ideas with one another. On average there are 140 million tweets posted daily by Twitter’s 500 million user data base. Twitter is just another communications channel available to your business, but one crucial aspect distinguishes it: its real time nature. Twitter breaks news faster than any other media channel, which means that your business can instantly communicate your message to your audience and, potentially, virally distribute it to reach your prospective consumers who were previously inaccessible to you.

Twitter can open many doors for your business. Connecting and collaborating with influential users and valuable industry connections, to spread the word about your business, can help your brand’s online visibility skyrocket. This, if used in conjunction with promotions, can help you tap into a prospective consumer base that is ready to make purchasing decisions.

The beauty of social media channels like Twitter, which differentiate them from traditional communications channels, is they allow two-way conversations. Using this functionality to augment customer services teams and acquire feedback from their customers, will not only support the management of your brand’s online reputation by addressing dissatisfactions directly, but can also promote your business’ internal product development initiatives.

An often overlooked but vital consideration is that Twitter will future proof your business for the consumers of tomorrow. All your followers are potential customers and, if not today then in the future, will have to make definitive buying decisions about products or services in your industry. If your brand has a credible and renowned presence online and has already established a relationship with them, they are most likely to have you in the forefront of their minds when it comes to buying. Consider developing an app or a quirky viral video to engage your younger audiences. Remember, they may not be interested in your product yet, but they will share some common interests with you. Use your creativity to tap into this and you’ll stay memorable for them and will see the fruits of your labour ripen in the future .

Many brands have ventured into using social media as part of their PR or marketing strategy but most fail because they forget an essential step of successful social media strategy: building relationships. A fresh and interesting personality will attract followers but Twitter is much more than just a numbers game. The number of followers your brand has is important, but the real value lies in the quality of your followers and the strength of your relationship with them. Only by respecting and nurturing this relationship can your business begin to determine any ROI.

By sharing remarkable content that educates, solves problems, entertains, informs and promotes interaction with your followers, a brand can demonstrate thought leadership and industry knowledge, which increases trust, confidence and the credibility of a business in the eyes of a consumer. Trust in the brand will lead to brand allegiance and from that you may get a lead conversion in the future. It’s not a quick sales generation platform but what it can leave you with is a devoted and satisfied customer base full of loyal brand evangelists, ready to recommend your products to their network.

There is no better time to start building these relationships than through a recession. It’s a well known fact that consumers are more likely to buy from a company that has been recommended to them by a trusted source than one that has not been. Budgets are slim for everyone and buying decisions can be influenced by word of mouth recommendations, so acquiring positive user generated content is priceless for all businesses; the more objective reviews about your products, the more confidence potential customers will have in your brand, and the more likely they are to buy from you. This makes developing relationships with your online customer base and transforming them into vocal brand advocates an indispensible asset for your PR and marketing strategy.

How are you using Twitter for your business? Tell us in the comments below, or tweet us @hroc_pr.