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The true value of Twitter for brands that want to be effective

Whenever I'm asked How can I get hold of you? I jokingly retort with Well, how can't you get hold of me? Many a true word said in jest, as they say. And it's true. WhatsApp, iMessage, Messenger, Instagram, Facebook, Email, Twitter, Facetime, LinkedIn, Skype, or an actual phone call. So, when someone says they can't get hold of me I tend to roll my eyes a little. I heard a line once that went something like this:
Never before have there been so many ways to ignore someone.

But what does this have to do with Twitter?

Why do brands need Twitter if there are hundreds of channels that already clutter our days? via Pexels.

Twitter is still one of the most immediate sources of news and information. In my own experience, I'll see breaking news on Twitter that I only read two hours later on Facebook. Maybe it's indicative of my own media consumption habits but I think it's more than that.

280 characters with an average lifespan of 17 minutes – there is no room for fluff. Get the facts out. Say what you want to say. Ask the question you want to ask. Don't pussyfoot around or try subtly intrigue users to click a link they might like. Tell them they'll like it and tell them why.

This is going somewhere. Bear with me.

Twitter stats

According to Kit Smith, from Brandwatch:
  • There are more than 310 million active Twitter users.
  • More than 1.3 billion accounts have been created.
  • 24.6% of verified accounts are held by journalists.
  • 83% of the world's leaders are on Twitter.
  • There are approximately 6,000 tweets sent per second.
  • A day worth of tweets could fill a 10-million-page book.
  • 77% of users feel more positive about brands when their tweet has been replied to.
  • 58% of top brands have more than 100,000 followers.
  • 92% of companies tweet more than once a day.
  • 80% of users have mentioned a brand in a tweet.

Still don't think brands need Twitter?

Blocked out sessions

In the past month, I've implemented dedicated blocked-off meeting-like time to engage with people on behalf of our clients – their brands. Now you might think, Well, surely that conversation should be ongoing so why do you have to block out time? Because, let's be real, that isn't an agency reality –especially a small agency. Yes, the conversation is ongoing but in small pockets.

What these blocked out sessions allow for is research, observing trends, seeking out users, giving opinions that matter. Has it been effective? Yes. In three weeks of two one-hour (give or take) sessions spread over five or six clients, here are some of the results:

Between the six clients, Twitter followers have increased up to 25%. Engagement has increased by a total of 103% across those six clients. Overall sentiment has increased in positivity. From simple statistics, it is clear that Twitter for brands is essential. Why? Ask Aaron Lee, a Twitter guru featured in publications like Forbes and Huffington Post, breaks it down in 10 simple reasons:

Reasons businesses should use Twitter

  • Twitter lets you connect with customers.
  • Twitter helps you establish your brand.
  • Twitter gives you instant customer feedback.
  • Twitter lets you market your product and/or service.
  • Twitter gives you access to immediate news.
  • Twitter lets you give away promotion codes quickly and easily.
  • Twitter is viral.
  • Twitter lets you spy on your competition.
  • Twitter can help increase sales.
  • Twitter encourages and supports brand loyalty.

If you've made it this far into this blog post and haven't yet signed your brand up for Twitter, I dare to say you've wasted your time. OR perhaps you need a few last persuading nudges (or kicks) to get you going in the right direction. Learn how to increase brand engagement once you've signed up, use these four Twitter strategies to inspire you to create your own, and try and believe the content strategist when you're told not to tweet like a brand to be successful. In conclusion: no Twitter = twit.
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