How companies are using twitter for business

Checked LinkedIn lately? The new partnership between LinkedIn and Twitter allows you to sync your accounts. So..if  you’ve found an interesting article that affects your business  you can Twitter it and have it tweeted to your LinkedIn contacts too.

When i first started to use twitter i felt like it was some sort of secret club (a freemasons for geeks) where everyone knows each other. I was petrified of doing my first tweet and thought how i do i use it, what for and what’s the #.@ all about?

As i started to use it i realised that Twitter is just a communication tool to let one person connect with another. It’s also a form of permission-based marketing.

Using twitter for business

Companies know that they should probably be using Twitter but they are not all clear on why or how. Ruth Mortimer – Marketing Week .

Companies can take several different routes to using twitter for business…

  • direct – using twitter as a marketing or public relations channel
  • indirect –  let employees tweet to promote positive feelings about the company (making sure they follow acceptable and desirable online particpation guidelines)
  • internal – by using microblogging services like Yammer and present.ly
  • listening –  keeping track of what’s being said about the company though micro conversations

Here are some other ways that companies are using twitter for business …

  • real time coverage of events and feedback or questions e.g conferences
  • building the companies brand – brand engagement answering customer service enquiries, for example Jetblue Airlines say ‘have a question? Follow us and let us help! They have 1,441,981 followers.
  • talk about topics customers may be interested in
  • broadcasting news and special offers
  • share ideas or communicate about what projects staff are working on

Some organisations have corporate twitter accounts others have multiple accounts to offer a different take on the corporate tweet. Whatever approach is taken Twitter allows companies to engage directly with customers and be more human which can’t be a bad thing.

Can the internet make you rich?

loadsamoney

Loadsamoney?

ITV’s tonight programme this evening explored how the internet is opening up new avenues for budding entrepreneurs to make their fortunes online  in these recessionary times.

Most of the entrepreneurs in the programme simply had a good idea and used the web and social media to exploit it. Take Lauren Luke’s You Tube video make up tutorials – Brilliant! – I’ve subscribed and i didn’t even realise i needed to.

When the internet first came around it was synonymous with porn, online dating and dodgy websites that sucked. How things have changed, nowadays  :-

• there are 42 million online shoppers in the UK
• 71% growth in the last 2 years
• Now 17p in every pound is being spent online (almost twice that of the US).
• £68.4 billion UK trade is expected to be done on the internet in 2009 compared with only £87m in 2000

What strikes me is that the people who are successful are authentic, real and practical. Social media channels simply enable entrepreneurs to promote ideas, products, messages or behaviors and spread them like viruses –  as Malcolm Gladwell so eloquently describes in The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference. Image the potential that Crowd Sourcing brings for business and social change…

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