Where are you, @ ?

Ragan’s PR Daily posted a article recently that I found to be surprising and a little scary.  ‘Brands simply aren’t replying on Twitter, study finds’ by Kevin Allen (http://www.prdaily.com/Main/Articles/15963.aspx) discusses that the average company tweets at least 12 times per day (great!), but they are sending out less than one @-reply per day…what?!

One of the great benefits of social media for companies is the ability to engage with your audience – your valued customers.  It’s silly to not use a tool like Twitter to it’s fullest potential.

 I know, from experience, that after I send out a tweet to a company or brand, I absolutely LOVE getting tweeted back.  It’s something magical that without social media, I wouldn’t be able to experience.  As a consumer, when a company engages with me directly and personally through social media it shows that they care and value my business.

 By the way – I LOVE Rent the Runway!

 Katie Howell describes the beauty of social media perfectly in her book Share This: The Social Media Handbook for PR Professionals, “social media are about presenting the human side of your business, engaging with your audience to build trust, understanding and brand loyally” (Howell 18).  Now, I understand that maybe some companies know or appreciate the value that social media can do for them, but if you’re going to implement social media into your business plan, at least use it for all that it’s worth.  “The ideal situation is to firmly align your social media goals with the core drivers of your organization’s success” (Howell 17).

Twitter was founded in 2006, it isn’t new, but I don’t think it’s going anywhere anytime soon.  So there’s no better time than now to understand how Twitter can benefit businesses.  Yes, the article I’m about to tell you about is a little old (2011), but it features ’15 business benefits of Twitter’ (http://www.prdaily.com/Main/Articles/10252.aspx), which is still extremely useful today (2014).  As it states in the article under customer service, “when people “call” your company on Twitter, do you pick up the phone?”

Allen, Kevin. “Brands Simply Aren’t Replying on Twitter, Study Finds.” Ragan’s PR Daily. 24 Jan. 2014. Web. 27 Jan. 2014.

Sanders, Simon. “Kick-start Your Social Media Strategy.” Share This: The Social Media Handbook for PR Professionals. Ed. Stephen Waddington. West Sussex: John Wiley & Sons Ltd, 2012. 15-22. Print.

Schaefer, Mark. “15 Business Benefits of Twitter.” Ragan’s PR Daily. 8 Dec. 2011. Web. 26 Jan. 2014.

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4 thoughts on “Where are you, @ ?

  1. I didn’t realize that this was something that businesses neglected to do and I completely agree with you in that it is a missed opportunity. There is really no excuse for businesses to not reply to their followers’ Tweets. It is like they are only putting forth half the effort required to maintain a virtual relationship. I think that the very last quote you posted really brings out how important replying to Tweets is for a business, because they would never NOT answer their telephone. And by today’s standards, there is no difference between answering the phone and answering a Tweet.

  2. Thank you for pointing this topic out Katie. When we look at developing a social strategy, there are many complexities that make up the final plan. Sanders share 6 points to consider when kick-starting a social strategy. Being able to provide great content in included within, but you must also take the time to understand the strategy for responsiveness. Companies like GE and Dyson are very quick to respond back with a tweet. These instances let their customers know that they are listening as a company and that they care about what their customers are saying. In your opinion, where might this fit into Sanders points? Or does it? We see far too often companies that are quick to jump into using these social media tools without understanding what they want to accomplish. Your article is a great example of why a proper strategy is so important.

    • Ginaluttrellphd, Sanders does give some very useful tips for kick-starting a social media strategy and I feel that in some way Sanders should have mentioned the purpose for kick-starting a social media strategy. Like you state above that companies are quick to jumping into using social media tools with no end result in mind. I would like to think that step 3 in Sanders, start listening, addresses what the main purpose of a social strategy is – connecting with the audience. In order to connect and build a relationship with audiences there needs to be a conversation. Responding to tweets is just as important as answering the phone when it comes to having that conversation, building their relationship and trust.

  3. I really like the article that you found. I can’t believe that brands do not reply enough on Twitter. The statistic about how companies are tweeting 12 times a day but are sending out less than one reply a day really surprised me. I couldn’t imagine brands not engaging on Twitter by replying. I agree with your sentiment that businesses that do that are not using Twitter to its full potential. I know that anytime someone that I know has a brand or company reply to them on Twitter that they are talking about it for weeks after. If company’s are not using this twitter for word of mouth than they are really missing an opportunity.

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