Image courtesy: http://www.digitalorganics.com.au
Few days back I was having a discussion with one of my friends in the digital industry over a topic which kind of intrigue brand managers or the so-called digital marketing managers even today. She was asking me on how to use Twitter effectively to promote brand’s products and services & thereby making it one of the key social media platforms for marketing apart from Facebook (FB). The conversation started from the basic difference between the platforms to the kind of audience and the character limit of the feeds. In this post, I would be addressing some of the important things brand managers should keep in mind while giving brief to their agencies or even while thinking about new campaigns.
First of all, it’s very important to understand the difference between Twitter and FB. Few years back, I wrote a post which covered the difference between these platforms, however that was more from a perspective of C2C (consumer-to-consumer) rather B2C (business-to-consumer). If we look from a B2C perspective, FB brand pages are completely different from Twitter brand pages. Twitter brand pages (similar to Twitter user accounts) don’t provide functionalities like integrating 3rd party apps on brand pages unlike FB which helps brands to run engaging contests. Moreover users cannot simultaneously interact with each other on brand’s tweets; they can do to an extent by tagging others however character limit restricts the same. And, in terms of social media users in India, I feel Twitter audience is much more evolved than FB one. Majority of the users on FB are between the age-group of 18-24 years are more inclined towards the contests, gratifications, etc. rather than the content published by the brands. For this age-group (18-24 years), Twitter looks like a more difficult platform to understand and use and hence you will find more people between the age-group of 24-30 years. Therefore Twitter becomes all the more important platform to advertise products as this age-group has more purchasing power than the earlier mentioned one though they act as influencers.
However without any further delay, here’s how I feel brands should go about on Twitter:
- Keep it as an interactive/conversative medium: Advertising on Twitter in India hasn’t taken off completely as compared to US/UK. Brands are still figuring out how to build their user-base. Twitter has recently tied-up with Komli media to rev up its advertising business in India however that is a costly affair if brand has low budgets for social media. Hence I feel that brands should interact with users as often as possible otherwise they will not be able to maximize their reach and make people aware about their products & services. Brands should also find a way to identify similar interest topics (using hashtags) and hence should try to strike conversations with tweeps in a healthy manner. This way they will be able to reach follower’s followers and increase their chances to build that user-base.
- Keep coming-up with small contests: Indian Junta as a whole likes contests and hence gratifications. I have seen many contests by brands where the main requirements are to follow and then retweet which kind of works somehow. I will not delve into the quality of contests organized by brands however this is surely another way to build user-base.
- Follow tweeps who have large following and are relevant to your category/industry: There are many tools which can help you to find the right audience to connect with. In so-called marketing jargon, they are called as ‘Influencers’. Find the right tool, follow them and interact as often as possible. This way you are giving yourself a chance to be visible on their followers’ timelines and hence to make them follow you.
- Use it as a support system: Using Twitter to listen to customer queries/complaints is a great way to build trust for the brand. Many e-commerce companies like Myntra, MakeMyTrip are already doing the same and therefore a brand that is serious about social media shouldn’t ignore it as a tool to cater to customer queries.
These are some of the ways through which brands should go on Twitter for advertising their products/services. Do let me know what according to you the best way is.
P.S: The views mentioned above are totally personal and comes from an experience of helping some of the biggest brands in the country to engage with their target audience on social media. These may differ from yours!