Think Twitter and you probably think of A-lister feuds and breaking news. Not always as an inbound marketing tool. But you can - and should - focus through the noise.
Each day, Twitter is a rabbit warren of 500 million tweets. It’s the original home of the social media influencer. It’s where hashtags were born. And it’s where inbound marketers of smaller brands often sit on the sidelines. Yet 34% of marketers have generated leads on the platform and 20% have used it to close them.
As intimidating as all the activity may be, read on for exactly why it’s worth the effort - and the tools and tricks you need to know.
Why You Can’t Ignore Twitter As An Inbound Marketing Platform
There are lots of great reasons to embrace Twitter for B2B inbound marketing but here are our top three.
It’s great for real-time conversations and events
Twitter is made for instant connections and conversations. In fact, Lithium Technologies research shows that 50% of Twitter users expect a response within an hour (and this rises to 78% for users who complain).
This real-time nature and Twitter hashtags makes it a perfect platform for streaming live events, Q&A sessions and customer service excellence.
Remember, inbound is as much about delighting your current customers as it is attracting new ones. Just ask Apple. Their @AppleSupport Twitter account now has 1.09 million followers, with sky-high engagement figures.
The social listening ability rocks
Twitter’s advanced search and notification features make it perfect for social listening. You can add your own thoughts to a trending hashtag, engage in relevant conversations and respond quickly to queries or complaints.
Social listening can also aid your content curation efforts. By following influential brands and individuals in your space, you can quickly keep up to date with the latest industry news and trends, as well as share this content with your audience. This adds value to them and ensures your brand is seen as forward-thinking and relevant which is key to attracting inbound business.
It’s the second-largest UK social network that links personal and business
90% of the UK’s internet users may use Facebook, but Twitter comes second with 60% (source: Ofcom) and roughly 42% of Twitter users are on the platform daily. Compare this with LinkedIn, where 28% of all internet male users and 27% of all female users use LinkedIn.
Yes, LinkedIn may be seen as the go-to social network for business-related news but Twitter offers a broader audience and interest-base. It’s a place where brands and people often feel freer to interject a little more fun and authenticity into their online brand.
Using Twitter’s Features And Tools For Better Inbound Marketing
Twitter has a wealth of in-built tools that can help you plan and execute targeted and engaging B2B inbound marketing campaigns.
Twitter’s advanced search feature powers up your ability to listen, distribute and engage with key conversations. Search for:
- People: tweets from, to and mentioning accounts (including your own influencers’ or competitors’)
- Words: from tweets containing exact search terms, to all words, some words (and there’s even the ability to exclude words)
- Places: tweets from people near a certain place
- Date: restrict the dates to focus on your goals
There is a multitude of different notifications you can receive. Many of these help you monitor your brand and keep you engaged with your followers or accounts you are targeting, such as:
- Mentions of your account
- Likes, Replies and Retweets to your Tweets
- New followers
- Direct messages
- Contacts that have joined Twitter
- Tweet notifications of specific accounts you don’t want to miss e.g. target accounts/influencers
You can also set up notifications that help you keep abreast of current news and trends, as well as the latest Twitter features, so you can stay one step ahead.
Lists are one of our favourite tools on Twitter as they’re a great way to segment and follow:
- Target accounts and decisions makers
- Buyer personas (for research purposes)
- News publishers
- Your most engaged followers
- Event attendees
- Twitter chats you subscribe to
- Your employee advocates! Check out our blog on how and why to do this, here.
This list goes on…! But try to keep your lists manageable. We tend to use no more than 10.
Taking Twitter Further With Third Party Tools
Here at Tribal, we love these third-party tools to help make our Twitter strategies more effective, and quicker:
Co-Schedule Social Media Optimizer
This tool removes the guesswork of whether your social posts will stand out or drown in the tide of Tweets. Simply type your message, indicate whether it’s text-only, attaches a video or image, or links to a blog. Then it calculates your score for effectiveness and offers suggestions to help you improve.
Twitonomy gives wings to Twitter’s features (and adds a few more of its own). It provides visual analysis and downloadable spreadsheets and PDFs to let you quickly see metrics such as:
- The number of mentions and retweets you got last month (and how it compares to the previous month)
- Which influencers you’re following that don’t follow you
- Who engages the most with you and your competitors
- The most popular content your competitors are Tweeting
Hashtags are essential for getting found on Twitter but with limited tweet characters it’s important to pick the relevant ones. Hashtagify lets you search hashtags to see how popular they are and you can discover suggested hashtags by uploading your tweet.
IFTTT (If This Then That) may be associated with connecting home devices via Amazon Alexa but it’s also a useful social media management tool. For example, you can set up an IFTTT so that:
- tweet a blog post the minute it’s published
- the minute someone follows you you thank them
- you automatically thank someone for following you
- tweet BrainyQuote’s quote of the day
- automatically post on twitter when you start streaming on Twitch
As you can see, Twitter is a haven of information and opportunities for inbound marketing, where any brand can quickly join the ranks of the “big players”. It’s never too late to join and share in the success.