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Twitter: What is this crap?
Last night was the first session of Social Media Success Summit 2010. Guy Kawasaki was the keynote speaker and gave a great presentation with some of his best tips for using twitter as a power marketing tool. Guy is a columnist for Entrepreneur Magazine Open Forum of American Express, and author of nine books including Reality Check, The Art of the Start, Rules for Revolutionaries, How to Drive Your Competition Crazy, and Selling the Dream. If you ever get a chance to see or hear Guy speak, I highly recommend it. I definitely have a little crush after last nights presentation. Smart, helpful, and cheeky. My kind of Guy.
My cat rolled over
Guy's first reaction to twitter a few years back was, "What is this crap?". Like for many of us when Guy first signed up for a twitter account, it made no sense. It looked like a bunch of inane comments from boring people. 'My cat just rolled over', 'my bike was stolen', 'I just ate a tuna fish sandwich'...Why would any business owner want to spend their precious time on such...well, crap?
But wait...you don't hear old ladies in the supermarket using twitter as a verb for no reason. It must do something other than tell you that my cat rolled over. Dig a little deeper and you find the true beauty behind twitter. Once you see a few examples of how other businesses are using twitter, the lightbulb goes off and you start to see how you can use it for your business.
Guys first tip: Twitter Search
One of the best ways brands and businesses can use twitter is by using it's search and advanced search features. People often tweet about what they are doing, what they like or don't like, and things they are looking for.
If you are a large corporate brand you would do a search for your brand name to see what people are saying about you. But for small businesses, it's not likely that a lot of people are tweeting about you. It's still a good idea to search for your business name, just don't be disappointed when nothing shows up. So how can small businesses use twitter search?
Let's say you are a local wedding photographer. You could do a search for 'wedding photographer', 'getting married', or 'bride' within 25 miles of your zipcode to see what people are saying about those topics. If the results show someone tweeting 'I need a wedding photographer" or "can anyone recommend a good wedding photographer" you can tweet them a message saying "We'd love to photograph your wedding. Check out our website here (link)". Starting to see a lightbulb?
There are a lot of tricks to using twitter's search function to find out juicy bits of conversations that you can be a part of and lead people to your site and services.
Stay tuned for more of my take on twitter tips from Guy Kawasaki, Facebook tips from Mari Smith and ROI for social media tips from Jason Falls. These people really know what they are talking about.
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