For the next couple weeks, we’re going to talk about how businesses can effectively use various new/social media for public relations and advertising. Mastering new media perfectly is like being able to answer the secrets of the universe – it’s just not possible. When the consumer is involved in the message, the company doesn’t have total control over every little thing. However, there are trends and habits that are good to follow and can help guide successful advertising in the new media world.
So let’s start with Twitter.
One of the best methods of promotion is word-of-mouth. People trust what other people say about your organization. Funny that they are hesitant to trust you…
As Lessons from TV says, “when you talk to one person, you’re talking to a thousand.” The networking power of Twitter is great, so harness its strength. There are a lot of tips available for good tweeting, but we want to highlight the big ones.
- Hashtag the right way
The hashtag (#) is a fundamental feature of Twitter, so use it! They’re used for tagging, joining a conversation, and oftentimes humor. But don’t be reckless. Hashtags can go oh-so wrong if you don’t think about what you’re doing. McDonalds started the hashtag #McDStories, but that just led to the sharing of horrible nasty customer experiences.
Don’t overdo hashtags too. Overkill will lose attention. Yeah, your post will be more searchable, but if there’s no real content in the tweet, no one will want to read it. Also, make them easy to remember – whether it’s catchy, short, or simple.
A good tactic to utilize is hopping on board with already known hashtags. #firstworldproblems, #NDSUproblems, and #ftw are popular ones around here. They may be different where you are, but use those! During the blackout at the Super Bowl, the smart advertisers used #blackout to join consumers’ conversations. Management Today has a more in-depth article on hashtagging as well.
- Target your market
Just like any other marketing campaign, a business has to focus their efforts toward their target audience. Talk in a way that resonates with them. Tweet about stuff they care about – no point in tweeting pointless information to the universe. Audi talks about how they target consumers on Twitter.
- Build a relationship
Twitter encourages dialogue, so a good relationship is a two-way street. @reply to followers and pay attention to what people are saying about you on Twitter. It shows that you’re listening, and if you listen…they’ll be more likely to listen. A relationship with your audience is a lot like a relationship with a friend – be honest and transparent, and remember that trust takes a long time to build but can be destroyed in an instant.
- Do more than inform
We don’t talk to our friends, co-workers, and family like information-spewing robots. We joke, we motivate, we share stories. Twitter is useful for informing followers, but strive to educate, entertain, and inspire too. Make the audience feel like they’re in a conversation and not broadcasted to.
- Use links and multi-media
We love clicking on anything linkable, there’s just something about those blue little words. Give followers something enticing in the tweet so they want to follow the link. Twitter also has great picture and video sharing features that makes for better tweets.
Jeff Bullas gives a couple more tips that are good to read.
The main key to follow in Twitter is a lot like all other new media – be genuine. Consumers can tell when you’re just trying to burn a hole in their wallet. Build a relationship, be conversational, be relational, and be transparent.
Go More In-Depth…
We never want you to feel limited to only what we’ve posted. Here are a list of other articles you can check out:
We’ll look into the social networking giant, Facebook, next week. If you have any opinions or questions about Twitter and advertising, feel free to comment.