Everywhere you look, there’s a business with a Twitter handle or hashtag that it’s promoting. As a result, you might be feeling the pressure to “get on Twitter.” But is it really right for you and your business?
Before you take the leap to tweet, answer four questions:
- What goal are you trying to achieve? Joining the online conversation, engaging with customers or gaining market insights are great Twitter-worthy goals. “Everyone else is doing it” is not.
- Are you or is someone at your company familiar with Twitter basics? Knowing the difference between a RT and a DM, a hashtag and a handle is critical to using this channel. (See Mashable’s Twitter Guidebook if you need some schooling.)
- Are you or is someone at your company excited about Twitter? If there isn’t some enthusiasm, tweeting will become a chore like taking out the trash or mopping the floors. And worse, you probably won’t succeed at it.
- Do you have the bandwidth? Because of how much content is on Twitter and the immediate nature of the channel, a successful account needs to publish a lot of content. If your team doesn’t have the capacity to tweet 3-5 times per day (yes, per day), then this probably isn’t the channel for you.
So now you probably have a better idea if Twitter is right for you or not. If it is, here are the next questions you need to ask yourself:
- How will it integrate with your existing marketing, customer support and/or services? Most often, Twitter is used as a marketing tool, helping create awareness for companies within their communities. But it can also be used to support existing customers or as a service delivery tool. Figuring out where Twitter fits into your company will help you answer the next question...
- Who will “own” your Twitter presence? Likely, there will be a few hands in the Twitter cookie jar but you should still have a definitive owner. They are ultimately responsible for quality assurance and general maintenance.
- How will you grow your network? That’s right, you may need to market your marketing. Grow your Twitter network by conducting a “follow campaign” in which you proactively connect with other individuals (i.e. customers and potential customers!) or brands (partners, perhaps?) on Twitter that relate to your business. At the start, it may seem like you’re not making any headway, but stick with it—and keep that content coming!
If you’re still on the fence about Twitter, create an account and just start listening. Find a handful of accounts that interest you. Maybe it’s a leading journalist in your market. Maybe it’s Ashton Kutcher (you’ll find no judgement here!). And if you have a smartphone, download the Twitter app so you can keep tabs on things on the go. You’ll soon be able to determine whether or not Twitter makes sense for your business.
Cheryl Black is a marketing communications consultant (and Kashoo customer!) specializing in social media marketing. Read more of her blog posts or connect with her at cherylblack.co.