This is post #8 in our series about our Twitter project. If you haven’t seen some of the former posts, you can find them here:
As you certainly know by now, we are experimenting with Twitter to see how you can use it as a marketing tool. Until now we have tried to balance the edge and we have been in the gray zoon almost touching the forbidden actions. I fully understand that the Twitter guys need to have a lot of restrictions to control the use of twitter. It’s more than OK that they put the Twitter users experience first, but I don’t really understand their means all the time.
Obviously the number one goal in this is to eliminate aggressive behavior like following and unfollowing thousands of users using automation. Another thing to eliminate is to spam other users with hundreds of automated tweets every day. The word automation appears as you can see in both sentences above. And you are right; the automation has been something ugly in the eyes of the Twitter guys. If you like DELL and others are hiring hundreds of people to do the aggressive work for you it’s OK, but if you use a piece of software to do following, unfollowing and tweeting, not aggressively but gently as if you had done it manually it’s not OK. Is that to favour the big and important customers at the expense of the little guy who wants a little relief with the tidy tasks?
The last slap from Twitter was that our account is filtered out from the search. Our tweets don’t appear in the Twitter search any longer; not even our account appears there. The reason is low quality tweets. Strange enough, our followers like them and re-tweet them a lot. The only reason as we see is that some of them have been automated. We are glad our account still works so we can tweet and receive replies and direct messages. From now on we will keep a very low profile and abbey the roles carefully. We do that for three reasons; Even though we don’t understand why some (Dell and President Obama to mention a few) can do things to make the Twitter usage a little bit easier and receive special treatment, we like Twitter and think it’s a great tool for social contacts and marketing. The other reason is that our account has grown to such a size that it’s very valuable for our branding. The third reason is that we are curious to see if it is possible to recover from this situation through correct behavior and again appear in the searches like under normal conditions. The last is an important part of this project.
To sum up what we have leaned so far in our Twitter project. Don’t use automation; not even very gently as if you do it manually. It is possible to build a descent sized Twitter profile manually but it takes much longer time if you cannot afford to hire people. Your Twitter profile doesn’t have to contain so many followers either. The only positive thing with many followers is to brand your self. It’s very difficult to build a huge Twitter profile with such targeted followers that you can market only by sending out tweets. The right way to market via Twitter is to use the advanced Twitter search to find the highly targeted prospects you want to approach and nicely help them with their problem. They will of course try to find out who you are and in that case a sizable Twitter profile of a couple of thousands followers will help you. You actually don’t need more followers than that to be successful in Twitter marketing. The most important thing is that you keep your Twitter profile in good shape, tweet about interesting things and always are helpful and nice to your audience.