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Get Social: Your Business May Depend On It

Twitter is the topic of this webinar, recorded live July 14, 2012 when SEO Director Albert Mitchell explains why your business must have an effective social media strategy to survive.

Learn to use social networks as eCommerce tools and to generate leads. With more customers tweeting, learn why Twitter is a great place to provide customer service and manage your online reputation.

Soon mobile searches may outpace desktop searches and your business must be ready. Learn the steps you should take to dominate your local market on Twitter, Facebook and foursquare, and possibly improve your rankings in search engines.

Fresh off his trip to SMX Advanced Seattle, Mitchell discusses:

  • Promotional messaging on Twitter
  • Planning your social media campaign in advance
  • Guidelines for creating awesome content
  • Keyword strategy

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Webinar Transcription

Pat: Greetings, everyone. Thank you for joining us for the webinar today. I’m excited to be back here with Albert Mitchell, a director of SEO at SEO.com. He attended an SMX Advanced conference in Seattle last month. We began a discussion with Albert a few weeks ago about some of his findings from SMX Advanced in Seattle—most of them revolving around the world of social media. Albert brought back so much from the conference that we decided to have a second webinar about SMX Advanced Seattle, and we have Albert with us again today. How are you doing, Albert?

Albert: I’m doing great. It’s good to be back here. One of the things I like about a second time is that it gives me a chance to say things that I didn’t get to say last time. One of the things I forgot to mention last time is my Twitter handle. We’re talking about social media and everything else, and what do I do? I forget to mention my Twitter handle. If you guys are interested in following me, it’s @amjoker. So, it’s pretty much like a morning joker—a DJ guy, I guess, but I haven’t done that yet. You can also find me by Albert Mitchell. I’m also on Google+ and I’m starting to use that a whole lot more.

Pat: Nice. And I think if there’s time at the end of the webinar, you’re going to show us some of your thoughts on the use of Google+, are you not?

Albert: Absolutely.

Pat: Here at the start, though, I’ll let you tee up the discussion, but I think we can expect to hear you discuss Twitter a lot today, and the proper use of Twitter.

Albert: Absolutely.

Pat: Where are we going to begin today, Albert?

Albert: We’re going to talk about using Twitter for lots of different things. You need to know what the purpose of your Twitter efforts is and set up separate accounts for each purpose. We’ll also talk about how you handle Twitter in a large organization to where you have a lot of different people talking about something, and that’s where we’re at right now.

Before we jump into everything, we’ll talk a little about analytics and ways of monitoring it. I don’t have a lot of real-life examples for you yet because it’s so new with some of the things that are going on. They were mentioned at SMX Advanced. Just be aware that I don’t have a lot of examples to share with those, but that will give you some things to anticipate.

Pat: Excellent. Let’s jump right into it. How do you develop a Twitter strategy, Albert?

Albert: Good question. You need to know your Twitter strategy when you start your campaign. You may be doing lead generation. You can have a Twitter account that handles complaints or one that handles your reputation management—those two are very similar. You can have one for promotional messaging. And each account is valuable in its own niche. To give you an example, I was having trouble with my Qwest Internet awhile back, and for being a tech guy like me, it really drives me crazy. Whenever my Internet goes out, I am furious! It wasn’t completely out, but it was pinging at about 1 or 2Mbps. And admittedly we did have two computers running on it, but I was furious.

So what do I do? I tweet out, and I even hashtag Qwest that we got Internet through them. And it took them awhile—it was late at night—but they responded back to me with this “talk to Qwest” that you see right here. And if you look down this—I did a search for this—you find that they have different accounts for different purposes. For example, if you click on this “talk to Qwest”… Well, before we talk about that, this QwestQBPP is just for business partnerships. It’s got a very narrow niche, and it talks about things that are relevant just to the partners. If you know your strategy and your audience, and you’ve got the manpower, it’s better to focus in on just one aspect.

Somebody following Qwest news probably is not interested in the complaints that people are fielding or those types of things—and similar with the Qwest QBPP. So, if we look over here at “talk to Qwest,” you’ll see that everything they have here is saying, “Okay, what’s going on with your Internet. Let’s figure out what’s going on.” So they’re listening.

Now, it took them a little while to do that. They actually got back with me the next morning, but I tweeted it out at 9pm, so I didn’t really expect someone to be on at that time. And it took them a couple of hours in the morning. I think by 10am they had a response for me. That’s one of the big important things: if you have a Twitter account and you’re doing this, you need to stay on top of it. You need to address these concerns because I expected them to respond to me.

Webinar Highlights

  • By having separate Twitter accounts for different audiences, you enable each audience to only follow the things that interest them, which increases their interaction and improves their perception of your business.
  • Through Twitter, you can actually reach potential customers before they decide exactly what they want. For example, you can get travelers looking at your hotel chain before they even know where they want to go.
  • If you talk about something enough, you can show up in Twitter feeds on news pages.
  • To optimize your tweets, pick keywords or phrases to repeat in multiple tweets that will help you to get noticed in all the chatter.
  • Use a custom link shortener to add a greater air of validity to your Twitter chatter. Make your own or look for a big one like Bit.ly or the Google Link Shortener.
  • Don’t link your tweets to the homepage. Instead, link them to the most relevant page to what you’re promoting in your tweets.
  • Use some keywords that are only indirectly related to your product. For example, if you operate a hotel in Costa Rica, use “nature” as a keyword because a lot of visitors to Costa Rica go there to see nature.
  • Always use the same link shortener. If you switch between two, you’ll have a hard time analyzing the results of your efforts.
  • If you are maintaining multiple Twitter accounts, you must have an editorial calendar that indicates what you will be writing about or promoting each day. This helps you to manage your promotions.