Never outsource, social media is not a marketing channel, it's part of your culture. Either you embrace and do it, or you don't. And don't
, is fine, it's not a requirement to being successful, but yes, you have to embrace it if you want it to work for you. Think of it this way, you have either a networking personality (you meet people, you socialize, you are comfortable in unfamiliar settings), or you don't - you can't hire someone to be that for you. Twitter, and all social media, is like that, it's not a good or bad characteristic to have, it just is; you either are that (and your business/brand is that), or your aren't.
Why do I say that? It SUCKS at acquiring customers, directly. I can assure you with 99.999% certainty that if you expect to get customers by tweeting out links with witty, insightful, or relevant comments, you will be disappointed.
Twitter does a few things well:
- It establishes social validation of you and your business
- It Alerts potential partners, investors, writers, bloggers, and influencers to you and your business
- Intelligence about your audience, trends, opportunities, etc.
- The audience on twitter SUGGESTS you have a popular or validated businesses. Important to note that it suggests that. I've done studies that show that from 1-500 followers, no one cares. Once you exceed 500 though, if displayed on your homepage (for example), you conversion rate goes up. People are led to believe that you matter. You can further that by actually being validated there... rather than just having followers, tweet things (don't just retweet others)related to your industry and build an audience specific to what you're doing.
- The @ convention is very important to understand. It alerts people. It notifies THEM that you've mentioned them. People like to be mentioned. Mentioning others means they will pay attention to you. Consider how you might do that with regard to people that matter.
- With social intelligence tools in place like Dachis Group's platform or Fliptop, your twitter network is a veritable gold mine of leads, data, and opportunity.
BUT (there's always a but). NONE of that works (well) if you're just tweeting from Hootsuite or paying someone to do it for you. It has to be part of the DNA of your business.
Of course, take my first point with a grain of salt. You can fake it. You can hire someone. You can be there, but not fully leverage it. But, frankly, it isn't worth doing if you don't take full advantage of it.
- Hootsuite - Easily manage twitter when you learn how to leverage the search, scheduling, and team features
- Dachis Group - intelligence about your brand, trends, influence, etc.
- Fliptop - WHO is in your network
- SocialBro - one I didn't mention: intelligence about the people in your network