There is little doubt that social media can help even the tinniest business. One only has to look towards the mobile food trucks and carts that have attracted a following on such platforms as Facebook and Twitter. "I'm certainly not getting rich, by any stretch of the imagination, but the use of Twitter allows me to have more of an on-demand business," says Curtis Kimball, who is known throughout San Francisco as Creme Brulee Man. (via San Francisco Chronicle).
The one-cart operation has nearly 12,000 followers on Twitter. Where there is doubt - plenty of it - is which platform is better for business. A case can be - and has been - made for both Twitter and Facebook. But asking marketers to pick one to the exclusion of the other is a harder exercise. The companies we queried about this, though, came through. Following are the results of an informal MarketingVox survey that makes the best case for Twitter being the platform of choice for business. Tomorrow we will run the case for Facebook.
More People Use it During Work
It is easier to connect with people during the work day through Twitter, says Bill Corbett, Jr., president of Corbett Public Relations. It is also easier to follow subjects and comment on subjects, industries and connect to thought leaders. "This allows for rapid reaction to topics comments and the ability to re-tweet to not just twitter followers other but other social media stream."
Good for SEO
Because Google has incorporated Twitter, or rather number and quality of Tweets, into its all-powerful search, using Twitter - properly - can help with a company's SEO, says Paul O'Rourke, Director of Public Relations for the Pipitone Group.
Goes Viral Faster
Shel Horowitz, author of eight books, says going viral is much faster on Twitter because you can engage in dialog with the right people. "I found during my most recent book launch (Guerrilla Marketing Goes Green: Winning Strategies to Improve Your Profits and Your Planet), I was able to use Twitter very effectively to reach a far wider audience. I estimate 5 million people were touched by the launch. Linked In and Facebook, not nearly as much."
It is Easy to Recruit Customers
Since most of the data that gets Tweeted is public, says Gary Zukowski, founder, TweetMyJOBS, "there's a huge opportunity for viral marketing campaigns, in which customers can become promoters of your products, bringing them closer to the company as well as a personal touch on the products that you are selling."
It Can Propel You Faster into the Spotlight
Penny C. Sansevieri, Adjunct Professor at NYU and the author of Marketing Experts, says she has gotten media interviews off of Twitter as well as speaking engagements. "The conversion seems much better when we offer a new product or special, the response is also clearly higher."
Stay Tuned for part 2: The Case for Facebook