Twitter has been bandied around as the next best thing in advertising for some time now. Upon its initial bubble, the social networking site was a thing of novelty, and the various tricks that marketers played were not noticed by many users. Becoming followed by a user could be as simple as following their tweets and many users would return the favor, regardless of content.
The website quickly became the darling of new media advertising agencies and the new breed of social media marketing experts. There is no doubt the social media can be a powerful and useful tool to reach out to customers with, but with all technology many took it too far in order for the chance to market their product. Tweets from many companies or individuals can simply be a wall of noise, tweet after tweet of useless information generally promoting their product in some way.
Still, as with email spam marketing, there is still a tiny percentage of people who will follow these badly managed advertising streams of consciousness, so they continue to appear. The simple marketer is caught up in what he perceives as an important battle to get more followers. More followers = more clout and more views, right? So they add hundreds of new users each day, some of whom will follow them back out of a feeling of courtesy or a mistaken idea that the advertising stream may be of some use to them in the future.
One of the many problems with this approach is that it is not well targeted. Sure, the marketer can choose to try and get people to follow his tweets taken from a list of those who follow his competitor. Therefore they should be interested in similar products. But if the Twitter stream is full of low quality content, only the impartial will follow the new company. These are people who will usually follow a simply huge number of Twitter streams, and therefore are unlikely to ever read the information you post on your stream. In reality, they are probably also caught up in the Twitter follower counting.
Much more important is the quality of your followers, so you should not lower your customer bases view of your company by being too aggressive with the marketing of your own Twitter stream. If you offer useful information, then the users will begin to come to you naturally, and the number of legitimate followers will snowball with time.
- Why I Turned Off TwitterFeed (kikolani.com)
- The Best Social Media Sites For Business (growmap.com)
- HOW TO: Use HootSuite as a Marketing Tool (mashable.com)
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