social media

Five ways businesses use Twitter – simplified

After working for a year at a company which has around ten Twitter accounts, I’ve figured out the main ways a business can use social media.

After working for a year at a company which has around ten Twitter accounts, I’ve figured out the main ways a business can use social media.
1. Product promotion
Like I said above, this is the obvious use. You’re selling a product, so why not tell people about it?
Example tweet:


Basically: “We’re selling this btw.”
2. Build trust and relationships
You’re trying to sell an awesome product, but who can customers believe you when you say it’s awesome? How do they know you’re not just a bot account promoting products? The answer: engagement.
What better way to gain customers’ trust than by talking to them and building a relationship? It’s just like real life really. Engaging with customers can be a difficult art to perfect, too much enthusiasm and you’re trying too hard, too little and you look like a robot.
Example tweet:
Basically: “We’re trying to be nice because you pay our salaries. We’re fab, love us (and then interact so all your friends can start loving us and we can get a pay rise).”
3. Blog post promotion
This is a little bit about trust, but it’s more about bringing people to your website where they can then find products to purchase. I guess it’s part of product promotion, however a lot more can be fit into a blog post as opposed to a tweet (but by tweeting the blog post your direct your Twitter followers to reading it).
Example tweet:
This tweet by an official account owned by Blackberry directs followers to a blog post about a new feature. Readers that take in and understand the information are more likely to a. use the new feature and b. have a better view of the company for providing helpful information, thus building trust.
Basically: “We’re super helpful so you should totally use our products. Here’s how.”
4. Connect with influencers
Industry influencers are individuals who have influence over other people such as potential buyers.
An example of a company using Twitter to connect with influencers would be a tech company following known tech bloggers (like people who write for Tech Crunch) building a good relationship with them. If a tech company can get an influential blogger to see their product in a positive light then the blogger will write a good review, which in turn could influence a lot of people to buy the product.
Basically: “Hi babes, we’re going to kiss your butt in the hopes you’ll positively influence people’s views on our business.”
5. Customer service
I’ve written before about Twitter being used as a customer service tool. Social customer service is booming right now.
Unhappy customers are taking to Twitter to complain. Gone are the days people will wait for emails; they want answers and they want them now. Companies almost have no choice but to respond. However, it should be said that customer service is closely linked with building trust and relationships (the two come together as community management), but right now I’m focusing on complaints.
Example tweet:

Basically: “Hi, if we f*ck up let us know and we’ll fix it. No need to tell everyone, just tell us :D”
What other ways have you seen businesses use Twitter? Let us know in the comments below! 
Photo: Jason Howie