If every corporate Twitter account was deleted tomorrow, what would happen?
Social media has come to define the way many people use the internet. But even two years ago the terrain looked much different (RIP MySpace) and it’s anyone’s guess what the next two will bring (good luck, Google+).
Twitter is currently the third most popular social media platform, so it provides a huge potential audience for companies. But realizing that potential may take more effort than we’d hoped.
That’s why we’ve been investigating what best-in-class Twitter strategies look like. CEC members we’ve spoken to so far have had some interesting things to say about the evolution of their Twitter strategy and plans for the future.
Let us know what you think in the comments.
What’s the value of followers?
- CEC Hypothesis: The size of your Twitter following is not important; the degree to which your followers share your message is. Followers are a crude metric of popularity but we have an inkling that winning the Twitter game really won’t have much of anything to do with how many people click ‘follow’ on your profile. How do you value your followers? Do you have monthly objectives to increase your followership? How do you do that?
How can Twitter ROI be measured?
- What We’re Hearing: It can’t — well, sort of. The great social media metrics question doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere anytime soon. While tracking followers and retweets is an easy way to map the growth of your audience and effectiveness of your engagement, translating that into a bottom line isn’t possible yet unless you’re selling something. What’s on your Twitter dashboard? What data is convincing your executives that a Twitter account is worth it?
What should companies do on Twitter?
CEC Hypothesis: Twitter should be a part of an overall social media strategy and anchored in a business problem or opportunity. Here are the core things you can do with social media and Twitter:
- Listen: Capture insights and feedback from stakeholders
- Twitter is an unparalleled source for candid, real-time monitoring of stakeholder sentiment. Some companies have designated individuals who monitor company mentions on a Twitter client, such as Hootsuite. Others are enlisting their digital agencies to listen and share feedback with the corporate center.
- Talk: Share information with stakeholders
- The most effective talking is the result of a clear understanding of what your Twitter audience wants to hear about and presenting that information in an engaging way. Most corporate accounts post company news and links to their web content, but creatively thinking about what will interest your audience offers even more possibilities.
- Connect: Build relationships with and among stakeholders through responses and dialogue
- Twitter conversations may be a mile wide and an inch deep, but people really love to have their voices heard. Some communications teams are focusing their Twitter efforts on responding — to an impossibly varied range of comments and questions — as an engagement tool.
- Energize: Spark advocacy and drive positive viral messages
- The Twitterverse can be fickle but if its heartstrings can be pulled it will take viral to remarkable extremes. Some companies are using Twitter to spark support for company initiatives, like Harley Davidson does for its Women Riders campaign.
So, what do you think? What big questions have you been wondering about your Twitter strategy? What are your plans for 2012?
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