We’ve written about Twitter a few times on the Tangible Words Blog, but not a lot lately, and that’s for a very good reason.
Most of you know that in 2013, Tangible Words went through the same website redevelopment process we lead our clients through. And recently, I wrote about the ABSOLUTE NECESSITY of realizing your website is the hub of your content marketing (which includes social media marketing, ahem.)
For Tangible Words, 2013 was all about redeveloping the website for user-friendly navigation, optimal interaction, clarifying our services, and continuing the steady stream of good ideas and thought-provoking content for small and mid-sized companies through our blog. We also changed our e-newsletter strategy a little bit, but made sure that our content strategy, editorial calendar and content policy (frequency, posting process) etc., were all in good shape - and working hard for the company. (Your content marketing is like a hard working sales person, and if your content marketing isn't helping you make sales, we need to talk).
Methodical Approach To Content Marketing
Many of you have heard me say at our Content Marketing Program workshops that content marketing really is the main source of most of our leads. And while we’ve been on Linked In, Facebook and Twitter for years, it’s always been front of mind that social media marketing is usually done poorly instead of well because people forget to make sure their website content is SEO copywritten, navigation-ally sound, and bursting with great information before they start, and stop, and start, and stop at their social media.The end result is that the sales process gets broken sooner than it should, like this great e-newsletter that broke the sales cycle.
So speaking from experience, as well as knowledge about the industry and what these tools are supposed to do for you, we recently took the time to review our social media marketing strategies and content policy for each social media tool, and with our website, blog and e-newsletter leading the charge, we’re now into the new phase of content marketing, using new tools. The result? We’re getting great results because the content marketing strategies and cornerstone tools are already established. So now it’s easy to use these tools for business and meet our high expectations: Twitter Counters, Likealysers and Linked In post engagement have shown exciting metrics - but more than that, our strategy is allowing us to have genuine, helpful sales conversations with our prospects - which we really like!
All of this boils down to what we promised in the headline:
"if you’re using Twitter, here’s a wonderful Twitter task to do for your account to start using this tool more effectively for sales: go through your Twitter following list - find key accounts and put them on a “List"."
If you don’t know how to separate your Twitter peeps into lists, I found some great resources online to show you how:
- Social Media Today has a great article that shows you Simple Steps To Create Twitter Lists on the Twitter web browser.
- The Twitter Help Centre’s article about Using Twitter Lists shows you some added functions of Twitter lists, like how to message a list at once.
- And if I don’t convince you about the benefits of using Twitter Lists in this article, you should read Tom Durby’s post on #Hashtags.Org “How Do You Benefit From Using Twitter Lists?"
The wonderful thing about separating your Tweets into lists, is that it prevents you from going onto Twitter and seeing “NOISE” instead of immediately knowing with whom to engage. When you don’t know where to start on Twitter, you often default to the “I’ll just broadcast my latest blog article- because this is too hard” setting and that’s not necessarily great for building relationships (if that’s all they ever get from you) and it might not be an awesome return on your energy because SOCIAL media is about building relationships (and relationships are how you make sales).
Lists help you engage more efficiently and more meaningfully with your targets. I’d suggest you make at least 3 lists - you can make new ones as you go.
3 Twitter Lists To Make Today To Build Business Relationships and Make Sales:
- Clients - you should be following and engaging with your clients on Twitter, they love to feel the love and it’s a great opportunity to show who you’re working with to the world.
- Prospects - put all the people you’d like to build relationships on a list so you know who to connect with.
- Competitors - keep track about what other people in your industry are doing, it’s a great way to find opportunities and get stronger as a company.
I use Twitter a lot for Professional Development, too, so I also made a “Learn” list of people who help me stay on top of best practices for website marketing, and those who create content I might want to share like Infographics and statistics.
I've also found that there are a lot of really FUNNY people on Twitter, so I made a “Fun” list - for when I want to have a good jolly giggle to break up my day or someone else’s.
You can make lists private or public so that Oscar The Grouch doesn't get alerted that you put them on a list, and also because these lists are really just for you: to make your Twitter experience more business-y and less messy.
When’s the Best Time To Start Putting Your Tweets Onto Lists?
It took some time to separate my tweets onto lists, so you might want to multi-task while watching a webinar or talking to someone on the phone. It allowed me to really clean up my Following list to make sure no matter which tasks I’d be switching between on a daily basis, whenever I got to Twitter, I was thinking proactively and able to follow my content strategy for Twitter.
From now on, whenever I decide to follow someone, it will be with my Lists in mind - because I know neither you nor I have time to lose with social media and content marketing. We need these amazing business practices to be a process we can follow almost absent-mindedly in our daily work, but that completely align with our over-arching business goals.