Twitter is awesome for communication and marketing, but how about sales? Business owners need to see the ROI of social media efforts before allocating more resources for social media hungry marketers. Here are some tips for using Twitter as a powerful sales tool:
- Qualify Your Business- Before actively engaging on Twitter, its important to make sure it makes sense for your business. Many businesses and industries dont benefit from promotion on Twitter (yet), so if your business falls into one of those categories, dont waste your time. A good way to qualify your business is to see what the competition are up to on Twitter. Are people actively talking about your products/similar products? If there is a captive audience who will benefit and has shown interest, it makes sense to enter the fray and establish yourself.
- Establish a Personality- Twitter is a nontraditional sales platform where straightforward sales tactics wont thrive. Its more important to give people reasons to follow your business: tweet interesting information, contents, and engage in relevant conversations before actively promoting your product. Tweeple (people on twitter) are acutely aware of sales pitches, so its important to make them understand the organic value of engaging with you.
- Follow Relevant Folks in Your Industry- In the beginning, resist the urge to follow everyone and instead, limit your follows to a few major players in order to keep up on industry news and provide relevant retweets. Focus on some of the smaller fish as they are more likely to follow you back before youve built a recognizable brand.
- Watch Your Follow/Follower Ratio- Don’t go too overboard with your follows as it can actually hurt your reputation. No one wants to follow the person that’s following 400 people and only has a handful of followers. Keep in mind, that building an audience organically will take time. Some sites will recommend that you buy twitter followers, but this is somewhat of a farce as it undermines the value proposition of twitter: connecting with people and having conversations.
- Build Relationships- This one is pretty straightforward. If someone tweets at you or retweets one of your posts, make it a point to respond to them. Everyone likes to be acknowledged and twitter is no exception. Try to make your responses as personal as possible.
- Monitor, Monitor, Monitor- Most people keep an eye out for mentions and direct messages but you can set yourself up for success by taking it a step further. Use a service such as TweetDeck to set up search filters that watch the name of your company, the name of your products (as long as they’re unique), and the URL of your homepage.
- Be Persistent, Be Patient- Just like any other sales strategy, there will be a sales cycle to customer acquisition through Twitter. You cant force a quick sale, but should focus on building relationships, building your brand, and being a resource for tweeple to recognize.
Like any marketing or sales strategy, when using Twitter to get sales, don’t expect results overnight. It takes consistency, strategy, time, and chutzpah to see results.