Social networking sites can be a great way to extend you reach to your customers, as long as it isn’t overdone. More contact is great, and can be used to your marketing advantage, but balance it so you don’t seem chatty like high school. You want to reach your customers, but still look professional.
Unless you have been living under a rock the last six months or so, you have all heard about the latest tech craze, Twitter. Twitter is similar to a live chat session with the world. The only limitation to your messages is the length of them (140 characters). This was put in place to cover users who choose to get their feeds from twitter on their cell phones. SMS messages are limited to 168 characters, and they wanted to allow enough room for the username.
OK, But What Good Is It For My Business?
Think of it as a free marketing campaign. A lot of companies are using it to extend and solidify their brand. Even the Dave Ramsey Show uses it to take questions from listeners and to use it to extend their marketing reach. An author recently used it to give his fans a chance to preview and critique a new short story before he released it because he wasn’t sure it worked as it stood, so he let them be his editors and incorporated most of their suggested changes.
Here is another thought. Let’s say that you are considering changes to a product, like adding the shirt in blue as well as the normal red, or moving the handle on another product to make it easier to control. You could twitter those proposed changes to your customers to get their feedback. Maybe they like the changes, or maybe they hate blue but would really like gray. Maybe they think the handle change would be better somewhere else, or maybe they like it where it is. That would be nice to know before you buy a gross of blue shirts or retool your equipment to change the way your tool is built. In the typical way of interacting with customers, you wouldn’t find out that was a bad idea until you are putting those blue shirts on the shelf at a 75% discount to get them out of your back room.
You can also use this tool to solicit information from your customers. Maybe ask them what they would like to see. Is there a product or service they wish you offered? Most people won’t say, “I wish you carried ‘x’,” unless you ask them. Most people also won’t make unsolicited advice on how to improve you products.
Another great use is insider offers. That will really get people interested in checking out the feed. At random intervals, log on and give your users a code to get a special discount on your products, or maybe on a special service or product you don’t normally offer. Used in moderation, this can be a great way to get a good following and bring more customers inside your “virtual office.”
Here at KARTHOST.com, we don’t succeed unless you do. Our goal is always to give you new and innovative ways to expand your customer base, and we are always here for you. Make sure you follow KARTHOST at Twitter, http://twitter.com/karthost
Wishing you all the best in your business endeavors.