Branding Blog

What is Twitter? How does it work and why should I care?

Written by Dale Berkebile | Mon, Oct 31, 2011

I have been trying to add some basic posts recently to educate people on what all these inbound marketing tools are and why they are important so here is another one on Twitter. When it comes to businesses why would I want to use Twitter? This is the main question I get.

Here is the answer. If you have done any advertising in the past, you ad sales rep was probably spouting off how many people read the magazine, newspaper or get the yellow pages. Usually this sounds like a big number and most people think, Wow, what if I was able to REACH 20K people. I could probably get a ton of business. Well, the challenge is that all these people are not interested in your product so the number is drastically cut. Then you also have to put out 13-15 ads to break through the clutter. Most sales reps don't tell you this part.

As you can see this route would get quite costly pretty quickly. Twitter on the other hand could replace this current marketing effort. It takes a little time, but you could build your reach to be 20K if you work hard, but even if you only build 200 followers right now, these followers should be more targeted since you are going after a specific target market. You will also lose followers who are not interested in what you tweet about and this is good.

So tweeting a specific message or offer to a highly target audience can really get results. The price is right too, it is free, except for your time that is. The other great thing is if you have 200 followers now and you keep tweeting remarkable content (tied to your blog topics) you will continually build a bigger following. Each year your reach will be bigger and better. You will also start to build like minded friends who will think your content is good and share it with their friends (it is called retweeting in the twitter world). Think about this. If you have 200 followers and just one person says, hey this is good info, I'm going to retweet this content. When they share it with their friends, your message spreads to your 200 contacts and to their contacts. So it they had 200 followers, your message would go out to your 200 and their 200 followers which means you just doubled your reach. Typical advertising can't do that without a big cost increase. Now what would happen if your friend had 1000 follower's or several of your friends posted you might be able to get your message out to several thousand people in a short period of time.

Keep in mind, tweeting "I like vanilla ice cream" is not a remarkable post and people will not retweet this. They will rewteet it if it was written like this though- "I like Curly's Frozen Yogurt with berries, mmm! Today they have a special offer at @CurlysFrozenCu" Notice how this adds value to others and a link to their website and twitter account. More people will retweet the 2nd tweet. So you want to practice really good tweets that add value and it could be about business like: "Saving the ta-tas: A Missed Opportunity for Public Health Relations? via @minetmarketing"#EmailMarketing Want effective email campaigns? Make an offer!" or "I'm listening to Entreleadership from @audible_com on my #iPhone. You can get the free app, too" 

I hope this help you understand Twitter for business. Watch this video for a more basic understanding of the tool in general. Then start tweeting and have fun! Oh yeah, don't forget to follow us on twitter @Brandwise.