A scary social media secret – Twitter is not about Tweeting… You’d do well to share this with your team

So, you’ve heard me put the boot into Twitter before, but you would’ve also read I didn’t say it was devoid of any merit. Twitter does have some cool little tricks, so I thought it only fair to shine some light on them.

Social media has become a pillar of business and is expected to unlock nearly $1.3 trillion in the next few years according to McKinsey Global Institute. Twitter will play an important part in this harvest, not least because of its sponsored Tweets, and the music service it is developing with its acquisition of We are Hunted.

But, the question is, how do you best use Twitter to get a piece of this action?

Incorporate Rich Media: Reuters has gone on record to share how it used Twitter to showcase its involvement in the World Economic Forum. With the addition of Rich Media Twitter aggregation, to visually pull together relevant Tweets for the event, it was able to bring to life people’s Tweet-consciousness to paint a portrait far more vibrant than a simple list of 140-charter Mini Blogs. It captured the imaginations of those attending and observing such that it generated 100,000 Tweets from the event, with 11,000 Tweets curated on its Rich Media wall. Anyone getting these kind of results has to be impressed by the extent of engagement.

Conduct a Twitterview: This is a way to personally interact with followers in real time. One of the issues I’ve raised about Twitter in the past is, if you aren’t always on it, your messaging can be lost. With a Twitterview you set up a time when your followers can quiz you about a specific topic. Set up a hash tag and everyone can follow the conversation and reTweet if they feel inspired. You can even include a live Twitter-feed on your website or Blog so others not yet using Twitter can at least observe.

Prep for a crisis: I wrote in a recent post that social media can be your radar as well as your arsenal to mitigate a crisis. Twitter in actual fact can also be your Fire Drill. With Twitter you can give your employees a system for any crisis situation when you combine it with something like Hootsuite Enterprise. HootSuite Enterprise works with organisations to run simulations, build teams and create customised reporting and dashboards so people in your organisation are in control, regardless of the situation at hand. This is perhaps one of the more impressive bolt-on advantages of Twitter for business. A penny saved is as good as a penny earned.

Have fun with it: Many of the best Twitter use cases are still to be written. I’m still not Twitter’s greatest fan but when you stop seeing it in isolation from other tools and open your mind to how you can leverage the Twitterverse with other apps, it creates new meaning for value. Trial and error is a big part of becoming an expert in all of this, so my advice – if you’re not just having a go, you should start.

For more detail on how you can get more from Twitter, I think this is another great Blog post: http://mashable.com/2011/04/14/pr-pro-twitter-guide/

Fun fact: The official name of Twitter’s bird is Larry. Thank the iconic 80s basketball legend from Boston, Larry Bird, for that one. Perhaps the fact I’m a Lakers fan has something to do with my Twitter-disposition 😉

So, what can your business do…in just 140 characters?

– My name is Aaron Crowther. Follow me on Twitter @ascommstweeter

One thought on “Under the covers – finding Twitter’s sweet spot

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