“Engaging in the conversation is the single most important function of social media marketing” Dan ZarellaWe have all heard this statement and it’s hard to disagree! We believe this is true for every social media channel, with the exception of Twitter. In fact, when it comes to using Twitter for business, we believe that to automated tweets are far a more effective and efficient use of your time.
Your reaction to the above statement could be one of two things:
The case for automated tweets
Automated tweets – impersonal? Spammy? Broadcast style (AKA the old way of doing things?)
Twitter’s own description of their service INFORMATION NETWORK
Notice that Twitter doesn’t refer to itself as a social network, but rather an information network. Working on this definition, it makes complete sense that the currency of Twitter is information and not engagement. Think about the last time a major news story broke through a news channel – currently news first breaks on Twitter and then is picked up by the news networks, as people start sharing that information in real time.
Exhibit #2So I make these statements based on two things:
- Research conducted by Dan Zarrella a social media scientist who uses data, experimentation and real science to understand how people behave online. I recommend you read his book The Science of Marketing.
- Apexhub’s own experience and data from working with 100+ client Twitter accounts.
Dan Zarrella has analysed millions of Twitter accounts and the summarised version of his results and his subsequent conclusions (if you want the detail of how he came to his conclusions read his book – it is sound) are, he noticed the following trends:
Twitter accounts with the most followers:
- Spend less time engaging
- Tweet more links
- Have higher tweet frequency (tweeted multiple times a day some up to 22 times a day!!)
Idealism vs Reality 99% of the time the reality for a dental practice is their marketing resource can not sustain what a person would need to do (based on exhibit #2) to get a return from their activity – if you did not automate most of this process it would could be a full time role – tweeting up to 20 times a day, gathering and sharing interesting relevant content! And who has time for that?
Which leads us to our 6 tips to tweeting profitably…
Start Automating your tweetsIt is not easy setting up an automated tweeting strategy – there is some work to be done, so be prepared! The good news is that the effort is done once but the benefits are ongoing. We have had some consistently good results often based on work we did 12 months ago!
6 steps to auto tweeting
- Content categories
Choose your categories to sort your content into the automation tool (this will help in future with updating your content based on what is being clicked the most, so you can freshen up your content). Examples of content categories are: brand awareness, meet the team, dental implants, tooth whitening, cosmetic dentistry etc..
- Evergreen content
Gather and compose evergreen content. Evergreen content is content that is perpetually relevant to your target audience. The word evergreen is most often used by editors to describe certain kinds of stories, stories that, because of their topic, are always of interest to readers. The idea behind the evergreen stories is that they’re always fresh. Bonus tip: Add images to all these tweets
- Create tweet depository
Put aside a day and start with your website and blog posts and use these to create tweets. The goal is to create in excess of 300 tweets as this will enable you to tweet 10 times a day for a month before the content is recycled. Like anything, start with 60 in the first month so you have 2-3 tweets a day for a month before content is cycled again. Make a conscious effort to add 50-60 or more a month because the goal is to get up to 10-20+ tweets a day to improve chances of clicks to your website.
- Document all tweets in circulation
Create a spreadsheet that details all the tweets you have created – have a column for a unique identifier of each tweet (eg A1, A2 etc..), actual text in the tweet, image link, character count of each tweet, website link (your trackable link)
- Automation software
Sign up up to a Twitter automation software (Social Oomph, Meet Edgar) to schedule your tweets– these tools will allow you to cycle your content on a regular basis.
- Review & refresh
Monitor once a month and freshen up content by adding to content base
It always comes down to how are you measuring the effectiveness of marketing activities, on Twitter or any other channel (read this blog on the benefits of tracking all your activities) and what you measuring to determine a successful activity. If you view Twitter as a traffic source – measure how much traffic you get from Twitter and the resulting conversions (emails) and enquiries, then automated tweets make complete sense. It’s already been proven you can’t ‘over tweet’ so why not tweet as many times a day to improve the chances of clicks to your website? Using a Twitter automation tool you can just cycle your content on a loop so it is ongoing and never-ending.
Ideally it is best not to automate any form of social media marketing, but in reality sometimes automation is a necessary evil! With Twitter, based on our experience, automating your tweets can get you some pretty good results.