Engage with Your Followers Like Big Brands on Twitter
Written by Karl Young
Social media marketing on Twitter has long been recognised as a “must do” for brands and businesses that are serious about engaging with their audiences. Surprisingly to some, it’s not all about having the most followers; it’s about relationships and the maintenance of those relationships through brand engagement.
The low cost, immediacy and viral nature of social media has led to an abundance of daily self-promotional Tweets featuring on the Twitter feeds of every user in Australia through to the United Kingdom
Frank Media reported in April that Twitter-Aus had over two million active users, that’s just over one percent of worldwide usage. In context this might not seem like a large portion but it is enough for popular brands to spend time, resources and money targeting prospective customers.
There are some brands on Twitter that are a shining example of how you should engage with your audience and grow your followers through social online communities. For those that are looking to grow, follow, engage and promote themselves on the media here are some examples of how it should be done >>>
Search, Find and Follow
All users and businesses (Commercial or domestic) want an audience, an audience which shares a common interest in their products, ideas, likes, dislikes, hobbies, music taste, etc… The first thing any brand or business should do is make sure that their profile is physically and visually engaging to users.
To get your profile in order you need to make sure you get the basics in place before you start hitting that follow button >>>
Users trust accounts with professional photos, so it’s important that you not only provide an up-to-date image of your logo but also one that can be seen clearly. Don’t make the rookie mistake of shrinking your logo and messing up the resolution - this appears unprofessional and open to mockery.
You’ve got 160 characters to tell your audience your purpose, so don’t be boring! Be creative and don’t, for heaven’s sake, use the section for a sales pitch. It will only anger users and drive your audience away.
For those brands and businesses operating in foreign markets it’s vital that you differentiate your Twitter profiles to ensure your audience follows the right accounts. A good example of a brand that has done this well is Sony >>>
Multiple accounts can be hard to manage, however with the right strategy in place a business can flourish on Twitter even if they don’t physically live in that territory.
There are a few ways that you can quickly find users that might be interested in your brand; the first way is looking at the Twitter Directories that are freely accessible. These are usually divided up into categories such as fashion, technology, music, etc… Another effortless technique for picking up followers is the leveraging of other user’s twitter lists. Many users create lists to get noticed themselves or have a specific list of users to contact/communicate with should they have a direct message for their interests. These lists are free to use as long as they are made public and you subscribe to them.
Your competitor’s follower profile can be a gold mine for picking up like-minded followers. Your competitors cannot hide their follower list, allowing you to easily click on their followers and start following the ones you deem to be interested in your brand. If your competitor has a large following and they sell a similar product or service to you, you can be pretty certain that they will be interested in your offerings as well.
You can also search for those “influencers” using Twitter search functionality. A more intensive task, but it is an essential technique nonetheless. You can search for mentions of your brand through the Twittersphere, and if someone has mentioned your brand (positivity) then you should be adding them to your follow list!
Engage and Share
Ditch the sale pitch and start tweeting interesting stuff to your audience, it can often be easier said than done and many businesses fail to engage with their audience because they set to many boundaries – ‘don’t mention this’ or ‘don’t interact with this audience’ for example. You need to be commenting on the latest industry events, tweeting the latest products, taking part in throw back Friday, taking part in Q & A’s, using hashtags, running competitions, re-tweeting and favouriting your followers.
Boohoo.com is one of the best examples of a brand on Twitter that has strong engagement with their audience; here are a few examples from their Twitter feed >>>
#onsiewednesday is a competition where all users get the chance to re-tweet boohoo’s tweet to be in with a chance of winning a onsie.
Commenting on events
The brand talks about events directly related to their products, whilst maintaining engagement and drawing interest towards their latest ranges.
Interacting with bloggers, customers and followers
The brand encourages engagement by highlighting mentions of the brand in blogs, tweets and customer testimonials.
The hashtags have been so successful on Twitter that Facebook have incorporated them into their interface. When used on Twitter, a hashtag concerning a topic, idea, message or event can trend worldwide within minutes. The hashtags give all users a way of tracking a topic and enables users not “in the loop” to be brought into the story.
One of the greatest examples of cross marketing on Twitter at the moment is Coke’s #ShareaCoke. Printing bottles of coke with names of people in them with the idea that consumers buy one with their friend’s name on it is utterly genius! Users are logging on and sharing photos of themselves either with a friend’s and their name on a coke bottle or taking a photo of themselves next to a coke bottle with their name.
The success of the campaign can be seen across all social media outlets, but it is on Twitter that the hashtag has generated an immense following for the brand. For those looking for #hashtag ideas look no further than the biggest brands right now. #doingitwell
Social interaction is a contributing factor to how a search engine ranks a website. A website with a “greater” social profile the more likely it is to appear high in the SERP’s. Social integration is essential – not just in all marketing efforts of a brand or businesses. Having social sharing buttons on your blog, website and products is now standard. This enables the visitors to share their findings with the rest of the world instantly.
Leveraging cross promotional activities can contribute to a stronger and more comprehensive social profile. The more reasons you give for your customers to share, the more likely they will interact with you not only twitter but also on your website or blog. At the end of the day a social profile is there to attract attention towards your brand or business. The more you scream and shout about your activities the better.
I have included some extra resources for those interested in becoming a master of the media >>>
- Twitter Guide Book
- 7 Ways to Attract and Engage Followers on Twitter
- How to Get More Twitter Followers
- Quick Start Guide to Hashtags
Rainmaking + ESG Launch Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator
Rainmaking, one of the world’s leading corporate innovation and venture development firms that create, accelerate and scale new business, has partnered with Enterprise Singapore (ESG), a government agency that champions enterprise development, to launch Singapore’s first ‘Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator’.
The new programme will unite startups and enterprises to boost scalable technology solutions that help fuel supply chain resilience by addressing pain points in transport and logistics.
Over the last 13 years, Rainmaking has launched 30 ventures totalling US$2bn, including Startupbootcamp. Having invested in over 900 startups that have raised more than US$1bn, Startupbootcamp is one of the world’s most active global investors and accelerators.
The new programme looks to help build more resilient supply chains for Singapore’s burgeoning network of startups by leveraging its advantageous position as a global trade and connectivity hub. As part of the Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator programme, no less than 20 startups with high-growth potential will have the opportunity to become a part of Singapore’s vibrant ecosystem of startups.
Calling Supply Chain Solution Startups!
The programme will kick off with an open call for startups who specialise in supply chain solutions for end-to-end visibility, analytics, automation and sustainability.
Applicants will then be shortlisted and receive nurturing from Rainmaking, fostering valuable engagements with corporates to drive scalable pilots with the aim to stimulate investment opportunities.
“Covid-19 exposed the fragility of global trade, and the Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator is our opportunity to spot weak links and build back better. Piloting outside tech can be an incredibly efficient way to test viable solutions to big problems, provided you de-risk and design for scale. Our programme does precisely this by helping corporate decision-makers and startups to work on compelling business opportunities, anticipate operational risks, and ultimately co-create solutions fit for wider industry adoption,” said Angela Noronha, Director for Open Innovation at Rainmaking.
Pilots will run from Singapore, with the objective that relevant organisations may adopt successful solutions globally. To that end, Rainmaking is currently engaging with enterprises specialising in varying industry verticals and have expressed interest in partnering.
“Even as we continue to work with startups and corporations all over the globe, we are so pleased to be anchoring this program out of Singapore. With a perfect storm of tech talent, corporate innovators, and robust institutional support, it’s the ideal launchpad for testing new solutions that have the potential to change entire industries. We look forward to driving the transformation with the ecosystem,” added Angela Noronha.
One of the first selected corporate partners is Cargill, a leader in innovating and decarbonising food supply chains.
"Cargill is constantly exploring ways to improve the way we work and service our customers. Sustainability, smart manufacturing and supply chain optimisation are key areas of focus for us; exploring these from Singapore, where so many key players are already innovating, will help us form valuable partnerships from day one. We look forward to joining Rainmaking and ESG on this journey to work with, support, and grow the startup community by keeping them connected to industry needs,” said Dirk Robers, Cargill Digital Labs.
In order to raise awareness on the importance of building resilience and how technology can be leveraged to mitigate risks of disruption, industry outreach efforts will include fireside chats, discussions and demo days.
In July, Rainmaking will host a virtual insight sharing event for innovation partners as well as a ‘Deal Friday’ session that connects businesses, investors, and selected startups with investment and partnership opportunities.
Programme events will also benefit Institutes of Higher Learning by offering exposure to how advanced practitioners leverage new technologies to transform traditional supply chain management and share real-world case studies and lessons learned, better equipping next-gen supply chain leaders.
“As an advocate of market-oriented open innovation, we welcome programmes like the Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator, which aims to help companies resolve operational pain points, strengthen supply chain resilience and spur growth in a post-pandemic world. With a strong track record in driving open innovation initiatives for the transport and supply chain industry, we believe that Rainmaking’s in-depth knowledge of the ecosystem and network of global partners can complement Singapore’s efforts in accelerating our business community’s adoption of tech-enabled tools, to better manage future disruptions and capture opportunities arising from shifts in global supply chains. This will in turn help to strengthen our local ecosystem and Singapore’s status as a global hub for trade and connectivity,” said Law Chung Ming, Executive Director for Transport and Logistics, Enterprise Singapore.