Last week, after enjoying a delicious doughnut from a popular local doughnut shop, I sent out a Tweet to advertise my great experience. When I went home that evening, I was pleasantly surprised to have an email in my inbox stating that the doughnut shop was now following me on Twitter! Because I had such a good experience at the shop, I decided to follow them back, and now I receive notifications about special “Twitter only” promotions.
I want to use this example to help explain how companies, large or small, can utilize Twitter (easily, I might add) to boost their brand image and increase customer loyalty.
The Secret: Twitter Advanced Search
Twitter, like Google, has an Advanced Search page which allows you to enter specific information in order to filter through and see tweets in real time. For instance, you can find tweets that include specific words or phrases, are written in a certain language, are coming from users living within 25 miles of your location and have a positive attitude.
Let’s say, for example, that I am a local restaurant in Seattle and would like reach out and find new customers. Here is what I might type in to Twitter Advanced Search in order to find potential customers:
Hopefully, you noticed the “Attitudes” section, where I checked the “asking a question” box. This is a powerful filter that allows you to filter tweets by the general attitude of the tweet, and I decided to check the “question” box because I am hoping to find potential customers asking for a recommendation.
Here is a sample of what I found on the results page:
These are just a few examples from the results page of potential customers within 25 miles of Seattle that were looking for restaurant recommendations. This is exactly what my favorite doughnut shop did to find me and follow me on Twitter. Plus, as if this weren’t enough, you can subscribe to an RSS feed to get real time updates of your advanced search ongoing so that you can reach out to potential customers as they are tweeting!
Use This For Your Business
Now, I know that some readers might not like the idea of companies, large or small, finding them on Twitter. Most of us Twitter users have had random people follow us and it can definitely get annoying. But because I had such a positive experience with the doughnut shop, I decided to follow the shop back, and am now much more likely to visit again soon.
This is certainly a grassroots outreach, and possibly tedious at times, but it worked with me and I believe it could be used successfully by you. At the very least, you should be monitoring your brand name for reputation management purposes. Of course, transparency is key, and there is a fine line between spammy and not spammy, but building followers and showing your customers that you care seems like good business in my book.
What do you think?