Published: 15 May 2009

The question is not really should I be on Twitter, in our opinion the answer to that is obvious. The question really is why should I be on Twitter and what should I Twitter about.

Twitter offers all businesses a new and somewhat unique opportunity to network and engage with their customers and contacts in a real time, conversational way. The key word though being 'engage'. Twitter's strength lies in its real time, conversational model. It's not like a blog where you post a few times a week and see what debate results. It's not like Facebook where you can create heavily branded experiences with lots of video, game and forum based content. It's something else, something different. In our opinion Twitter is the place where you can talk to people as people.

Why do we do it?

Sagittarius Digital is a marketing company, B2B; it's not Nike or Coca Cola - youth brands for a youth platform - as some would argue. The truth is that it's a great way to create brand engagement and reach new customers and audiences. In classic marketing speak, it's about customer acquisition, through networking, and retention, through meaningful continuous dialogue. The other truth is, its used by everyone with recent figures showing the largest take up of late has been in the 20 - 35 year old age group which now account for near 20% of all Twitter users.

What is Twitter?

  • Twitter is a place to engage customers and contacts in an informal and conversational manner
  • Twitter is a place where you can create interest through the clever use of content to keep people engaged with what you're doing and thinking
  • Twitter is a place where you can take something corporate or news worthy and use it to generate conversation, engagement and reach
  • Twitter is a channel that takes effort, dedication and genuine interest in those that you connect with. It should not be undertaken lightly and should not be something that gets done when you get round to it
  • Twitter is a place wher you can listen to what others think of you, good or bad and then deal with it

Conversely, the following is a list of what Twitter is not:

  • Twitter is not an extension of your RSS feed.
  • Twitter is not a way to force your special offers on to people
  • Twitter is not a place to fill with tweets about how great your business and your products are
  • Twitter is not a place where you can run and hide

Twitter should be a part of your communications strategy and very much part of your social media and digital marketing strategy. More importantly, it should be something that you undertake in a considered way, ensuring you're constantly thinking about what your next tweet will be. It should be conversational and should be fun, but like all forms of marketing and PR it should be tactical, planned and executed with skill and care.

So should you and your business be on Twitter. Yes, but only if you know why you're doing it and only if you have the time and resources to do it well. If nothing else, learn from our man Fletch - it can get you on TV.

Author: Nick Towers
Director of Digital, Sagittarius Digital

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