Twitter, within a few short years, has grown to be one of the leading social sites in Australia and the world. In Australia alone, Twitter receives more than 1.2 million unique visitors a month, providing a solid avenue for organisations to connect, engage and build relationships with new and existing consumers. However having a presence on Twitter is harder than just creating a profile and tweeting about how great your product is. Inspired by Brian Solis, 21 Twitter Tips , this article reviews how Australian organisations are adopting some of the different strategies he covers in his article.
If your brand is yet to have a Twitter profile hopefully this article provides you with some useful food for thought. Or if you have a profile but need to refine the strategy this article may provide clarity on the techniques that you could adopt to create a very useful and engaging Twitter experience in 140 characters.
Globally @DellOutlet has generated over $3 million in revenue through Twitter and Facebook via offers. Locally it seems that special offer strategies are one of the most popular tactics to use for a Twitter profile. @VirginBlue, @JetstarAirways and @tigerairwaysaus have established significant followings through their Twitter accounts. And it seems that it is paying off for at least some of them. In 2009 @JetstarAirways offered 1,000 seats for two cents – and sold out in hours (no wonder why). And in August, Jetstar announced a new route launch using Twitter with a “free seats” offer for its new Sydney-Melbourne services. As a result of its success Jetstar has announced a significant shift of its marketing budget towards social media in 2010.
However it is not just airlines that are leveraging the Twitter opportunity. EB Games currently has also adopted a similar approach by releasing special codes and discounts via their Twitter profile.
Word of Mouth Marketing
@Crust Pizza has been leveraging Twitter to spread the word about its pizza through its tweet promotion. Still running, this competition provides the opportunity for consumers to win free pizza on Friday by Tweeting – #CrustFreePizzaFriday. The competition is only open to Crust followers which I am sure has had a big impact on the growth of their number of followers which now stands at 2,530. Whilst quantifying the direct impact is difficult, the CEO of Crust is confident that the promotion has impacted their bottom line.
The Telco’s seem to be all over this one proactively seeking out unhappy customers and fielding direct client customer service issues. @VirginMobileAus is a great example of a brand monitoring the Twittersphere for unhappy customers and trying to right wrongs – see below.
eg @undisclosed Hiya, saw ur tweet RE: VM =( Is there anything I can do to sway ur impression? Pls DM, Thanks! =)
Crowdsourcing & Feedback
When Australia’s biggest realestate site re-launched their new platform they dedicated time to reviewing the feedback and actioning issues. And it seems they are not the only ones. Many Australian brands are reaching out to consumers to gauge feedback on websites including @WorldVisionAus @STATravel. However this is one strategy that I believe Australian brands could be using more of. Reaching out to a Twitter network for feedback on new offerings or crowdsourcing new ideas is a significant untapped resource and is a big opportunity for those in the online media / classifieds space as well as those in the fashion / retail space.
Information networks provide helpful alerts, notices and information to help followers avert problems or get up to the minute information. The obvious applications for such profiles include airlines and transport companies however few have taken advantage of this opportunity, however the AFL has. @AFL provides users with quarter by quarter updates on matches and tribunal results. In addition the AFL aggregates other club related information to keep footy fanatics completely up to date.
Marketing to potential new staff through social media provides recruiters with a new way to seek referrals and applications for open positions at a lower cost and can enable brands to really reach out to brand advocates. Amongst other tweets, one of the core strategies for @WorldVisionAus is to do just that. Access their Twitter page and you will see recruitment is one of the core Twitter focuses.
Dedicated & Brand Channels
For some brands with multiple offerings, it is difficult to develop one dedicated profile and it also makes sense to establish exclusive channels or subchannels to share specific information and tap into a niche. @bigpondmovies & @bigpondmusic are examples of sub-brands adopting this kind of strategy. Although both are yet to build a significantly large following the profiles are tapping into niches to provide relevance and interact with users based on interest categories, which is a sensible strategy.
Aggregated Content & Topic Experts
Whilst this is a bit of a combination of Brian’s categories, it is one that has merit. Most organisations leverage Twitter to promote branded content and despite it being targeted and relevant there is a lot of value in aggregating and repackaging content on a particular topic / category of interest. @ABCnews is a good example of doing just this – it has adopted the branded channels strategy and combined it with aggregating content feeds from Twitter profiles to bring together a culmination of different views on the one topic. One good example of this is their @ABCnews/federal-parliament profile which aggregates content from Kevin Rudd, Joe Hockey, Malcolm Turnbull and a host of other MPs.
Supply Chain Relationships
Not only is Twitter providing ways to develop direct relationships with consumers, however it is also providing brands with the opportunity to connect with their distribution channel to ensure they are kept up to date with product updates as well as to motivate distributors and empower them to spread messages through their individual networks. Amway @amwayausnz is one such company doing just that. Mr Coldwell, Head of Operations stated in an article just yesterday that – the use of social media fitted well with the overall philosophy of the Amway group, which saw itself as a community builder as much as a retailer. Their Twitter strategy aims to reach out and recruit new distributors and communicate with existing ones – and with nearly 150 followers and plenty of interaction it seems that it is already making an impact.
If you are about to embark on a Twitter strategy I would highly recommend Brian Solis article – as it definitely provides a lot of avenues to consider before developing a Twitter strategy
Got any other examples you would like to share that fit into the categories above or Brian’s categories? If so please share them below (no doubt I have missed some great Australian organisations using Twitter in unique ways)